One of the beautiful things about being a boutique jewelry designer is that I have great flexibility in the work I do, and what I choose to create. I started my career designing men’s jewelry by chance: a good friend commissioned me to design a pair of cuff links for him. As my brand has grown over the years to include a myriad of permanent collections, I love to take on occasional commissioned pieces for my discerning patrons. Bringing a commissioned piece of jewelry to life is a tailor-made process. Whereas I’m usually designing purely based on my own vision, thoughts, feelings, and moods, with commissioned pieces I’m designing for someone directly. Even before it exists this piece has an owner, which is vastly different from designing a piece for an unknown future wearer. There is already history and personality to a commissioned piece, and my job is to reinterpret its story. For the most part, bespoke jewelry begins with a stone. Maybe it came from a family heirloom, perhaps it was purchased as a gift but the setting never quite suited the wearer’s aesthetic. After being introduced to the stone, my creative process begins. I draw out an initial design, just a simple hand-drawn sketch, and show it to the client. If there are any requested changes, I’ll revise the sketch, and then once we’ve gotten approval, my skilled team of artisans go to work. Repurposing it in a new setting and pairing it with my signature materials, I give it a new life.They become unique pieces of art, yet unassumingly discreet, that are wholly unique and effortlessly wearable. Something you never take off. Whether it’s the woman who wants to free a certain cherished stone from the depths of her jewelry safe, or a husband seeking the perfect gift for his wife, creating bespoke pieces are a joy for me. This work fuels me and inspires me and I get such delicious pleasure out of creating these one of a kind designs for my patrons. When I see a smile on their face, I know they will wear it for a long time...and think of me each time they do.   xo Catherine

The Journal

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