When I met Victor Velyan at the Couture show, I knew that I was meeting one interesting and talented guy. Full of stories of his “second” home in Africa, I know he could keep anyone entertained for hours! (In fact during the show, I heard a couple designers affectionately refer to him as “African Vic.”) But sooner or later, I had to get to exploring his incredible line, the likes of which I haven’t seen before.
Based in Los Angeles, Victor has been in the jewelry business for 30 years. But about 5 years ago, he really got the urge to create something extremely new and edgy that no one had seen before, so this particular line was born. It’s all completely hand made with NO electric tools! He only uses old-school tools such as chisels and hammers. The first thing that really struck me about his line was the amazing patina on some of his pieces, which he described to me as, “copper trying to come back to life.” Take a look at this exquisite cuff, and the detail of the carefully carved crocodile pattern. The patina process took him 5 years to develop, but I think the hard work was worth it!
He also has a white patina on some pieces, which are made using a pure acid bath. The result is extremely unique! This white patina is beautiful on these drop earrings, accented with pink sapphires and sea blue onyx. And a fabulous feature about these earrings is that you can take off the drops, and add others. Great versatility!
I also think these tourmaline and sapphire earrings are quite spectacular, with the color harmony of the stones — fab combo!
Victor also loves pearls. This necklace of pink tourmaline, diamonds and South Sea white pearls is worthy of a princess! And the back of the pendant is just as beautiful as the front.
While I was admiring his collection, I happened to meet Soraya Cayen, who has a fine jewelry store, Cayen Collection, in Carmel, CA. Small world! She carries his line, and is a collector of his work herself. Since Carmel is definitely one of my favorite places to visit, I’ll be sure to stop by next time I’m in town!