Google+ The Daily Jewel: 10/27/13 - 11/3/13


Friday, November 1, 2013

#DailyJewel - One Last Nod To Halloween from Wendy Yue

Wendy Yue is known for her over the top - one of a kind - Fantasy Jewelry.
    ...based in nature - but pushed to the jeweled limits ;)


Via the Wendy Yue Website:   "The Wendy Yue philosophy is simple: boundless, fantastical, and ever-evolving beauty. From a sapphire studded frog sprawling on aquamarine and jade swamps to a floral cameo entangled by diamond-set serpents, Wendy Yue has established itself as an avant-garde of haute couture jewelry with its elegant yet exotic designs, gaining international recognition from dignitaries and collectors around the world.

Wendy Yue pieces are one-of-a-kind, meticulously crafted, and in limited edition, carried by the finest boutiques across Europe and the United States."

Thursday, October 31, 2013

Happy Halloween #DailyJewel - Baby Bat from Dana Schneider Jewelry


From the #DailyJewel with an assist from Dana Schneider Jewelry!

Dana Schneider is the go-to jeweler for films with edge...I first found her when she did the Rune jewelry for my favorite YA Series - The Mortal Instruments by Cassandra Clare.

"I love this little guy. I used a fruit bat as my model. He's cast of solid sterling silver."

I am the jeweler that made the Mockingjay pin for the Hunger Games movie. I have made jewelry for over 50 movies at this point. This year I will have 11 movies coming out that I made jewelry for. Wolverine 2 , The Mortal Instruments: City Of Bones, G.I. Joe 2, Wolves, and Catching Fire are among them. This year also I have made jewelry for GLEE, Nashville, Go On, Californication and Ray Donovan which will air June 30th on Showtime.

My first job after graduating from Rhode Island School of Design with a BFA in Sculpture ( not jewelry ), was working in the jewelry repair department of Tiffany & Co. in New York City. Many of the things I learned there I still apply to my designs today. After about 2 years at Tiffany's, I decided to start my own business and have been making jewelry ever since. Before moving to L.A. in 1999, I did do trade shows, sell through showrooms and sold to stores including Barney's in New York City. My jewelry has been on the covers of Elle, Harpers Bazaar , Mademoiselle, and many others. I found though, that it wasn't that fulfilling for me. I just felt something was missing. I was sitting in a movie theater in upstate New York in December of 1998 when I saw the movie trailer for " The Matrix ". It was then and there that I decided to move to L.A. and try to break into making jewelry for movies. 
When I moved to LA and it was almost a year before I worked on my first movie there. I didn't know anyone who could help me and it was just sheer determination that got me through. If you look on my website in the " books " section, all of that work had been made before I moved to LA so I had a lot to show costume designers and directors when I did finally meet them. 

On my website, you can see a big portfolio of my film work. I make everything myself. From carving all my own original wax models to the final finishing. I do not have an assistant, ( nor do I want one ) so I periodically have to close my ETSY shop to focus on my film work which will always take top priority for me. I rarely ever take a " vacation " .

...and from her Etsy Shop:

Wednesday, October 30, 2013

#WordlessWednesday - EFFY has a Collection to meet your Holiday Needs!

With the addition of their new Bridal Collection, 
EFFY has the goods to fill any holes in your inventory coming into the Holiday Season!

Photos - Robyn Hawk @aflyonthewall at JCK Las Vegas


Monday, October 28, 2013

Today's #DailyJewel - Honors Edith Head's Birthday

Edith Head's signature necklace can be seen in so many photos of the famed Costume Designer, was a commissioned piece that Head wore almost daily.  Edith Head's Charm Necklace - a collection of ivory Opera Tokens from 19th Century theatres in London...

Bequeathed to Elizabeth Taylor in Head's will,  It was recently auctioned in the Collection of Taylor's Jewels at Christies.

Christies reported: " The first showstopper was The Edith Head Necklace which realized $314,500 (£201,280/€242,165). This one-of-a-kind gold necklace with ivory opera passes, circa 18th and 19th centuries, captivated the imagination of clients around the globe and attracted fierce competition. Having been bequeathed to Elizabeth Taylor by her dear friend, the renowned Hollywood costume designer, Edith Head - whom she often described as being like a second mother to her – it was one of Miss Taylor’s most cherished possessions."

Google Doodle honoring Edith Heads 116th Birthday observation...

Hing Wa Lee Celebrates With Week Long Opening of San Gabriel Flagship Store Opening


 The weekend-long event focused on luxury brands 
...and a performance by world-renowned pianist, Lang Lang 

Over 100 VIP guests attended the opening celebration of Hing Wa Lee’s new San Gabriel flagship store on Friday. The evening began with an official ribbon cutting by San Gabriel’s mayor, Juli Costanzo, followed by a ceremonial Chinese Lion Dance. Guests were then invited inside to view the grand 15,000 square-foot expanses, followed by a performance by world-renowned pianist, Lang Lang, and a 10-course Chinese feast.

The festivities continued on Saturday and Sunday, at which time the public was invited to experience the grandeur of the new flagship for the first time.

In addition to VIP clients, top industry executives were on-hand to celebrate their brand’s partnerships with Hing Wa Lee. Hughes De Pinis, President of North America for Vacheron Constantin and Jan-Patrick Schmitz, President and CEO of Mont Blanc North America, among others, were in attendance for the historic opening. Adam Bossi, Brand Manager for Blancpain, displayed the Villeret, the world’s first Traditional Chinese Calendar timepiece, a one of a kind item brought in exclusively for HIng Wa Lee’s opening.

Audemars Piguet CEO, Xavier Nolot, commented, “We are amazed and very impressed by what David Lee has achieved with this new flagship. We are certain that our brand, and continued partnership, will be successful in this environment.”

“This is, by far, the most spectacular jewelry and watch store I’ve seen,” shared Ahmad Shariar, of Ulysse Nardin. “Each brand has it’s own identity but the overall effect is so harmonious. It’s evident that David Lee put his heart and soul into this project, fulfilling the dream of his late father.”

The European-inspired space features collections from over 60 brands, including Rolex, Franck Muller, and Richard Mille, Dior. In addition, the new location (the second flagship for the Hing Wa Lee Group) features a collection by Cartier—the store’s inaugural offering of the iconic luxury brand. Tudor, Hublot and Rado are also available for the first time at Hing Wa Lee.

David Lee, Chairman and CEO of Hing Wa Lee Group, noted, “The San Gabriel location was a project my father started 8 years ago. While he is not here to see his dream to come to fruition, we dedicate it in his memory.”

The new Hing Wa Lee store is located at 1635 S. Del Mar Avenue in San Gabriel, CA. It is open daily from 11am to 8pm Monday through Friday, with extended hours until 8:30pm on Saturdays and Sundays.

About Hing Wa Lee: The Hing Wa Lee story began in Hong Kong in 1965, where the company’s namesake started manufacturing of gemstone carvings and fine jewelry. Over the past 5 decades, the company has established a strong retail presence, becoming a major destination for luxury goods in Southern California. Hing Wa Lee’s stores offer a wide range of luxury products including fine jewelry, timepieces, crystal, art sculptures, leather goods, accessories, pens, luggage and high-end cellular phones. With Hing Wa Lee’s son, David, now at the helm to lead the company into the next generation, the company is poised for continued growth.

The opening of the company’s new San Gabriel location continues to fulfill Hing Wa Lee’s mission: providing great value for a vast variety of quality merchandise and excellent service to a culturally diverse clientele in a luxury setting. For more information, visit

Sunday, October 27, 2013

Today's #DailyJewel - God is in the #details! 'Ethereal Rhapsody' by Reena Ahluwalia

Today's Daily Jewel features one of my favorite designers and one of the sweetest women you will ever meet...Reena Ahluwalia.

Most know Reena as the design inspiration behind Royal Asscher's Stars of Africa Collection but she is probably one of the winning-est designers around. Between her winning contest entries and the collections she has been invited to contribute to, her accolades abound! The ‘Ethereal Rhapsody’ Necklace by Reena Ahluwalia was the Winner of the Tahitian Pearl Trophy 2007 - 2008...

God is in the #details! 'Ethereal Rhapsody' necklace by Reena Ahluwalia. Tahitian pearls, black and white diamonds, set in 18K white gold. More:

My inspiration for ‘Ethereal Rhapsody’ came from the Pleiades star clusters also know as Seven Sisters in the Greek mythology. The interplay of light, shadow and colour became imperative for me to accentuate the neckpiece's rhythmic, interconnected shapes, which serves to contrast them against the negative space that is always visible within and around the piece. It was a constant negotiation of form, movement, and space, something which I hoped will be evident when viewing this piece from different viewing angles. The neckpiece uses sophisticated internal spring-loaded mechanisms, which open and close this piece comfortably. The necklace is hinged for flexibility and follows the body contours elegantly. -Reena Ahluwalia

"Jewels of the Connoisseur" at the #Bowers Museum

I usually cover reviews of shows, books and exhibitions on my Views & Reviews blog, but this exhibit was exquisite and I wanted to do a little bragging about the fabulous museum we have here locally in Orange County.

We have been SO blessed in the Orange County to house a Museum that honors the art value of Jewelry. The Bowers Museum in Santa Ana has played host to the Van Pelts, Faberge and even the jewelry of the Headhunter.   

The Jewels of the Connoisseur ran in the Pimco Foundation Gallery from July 27, 2013 through October 6, 2013 showcasing jewelry created from gems so rare that only true connoisseurs even know they exist. 

FYI - Photos can all be enlarged by clicking on the photo

The Pimco Foundation Gallery is a small but really well lit space (a very important factor that I didn't understand until a recent visit to the de Young Museum in San Francisco) that was literally chock FULL of 50 pieces of Jewelry designed to hold the rarest and most unusual gems. 
Sphene Butterfly Photo Credit: Robert Weldon 

There were full suites of sphene (one in the brown and one in the green body jewels) in Riviere Style Neckpieces - that were true to the term - a river of faceted sphene graduating to the center focal.

There was an assortment of the collectors' famous Butterfly Brooch Collection (it didn't seem to be the entire collection, but it could have been).  The Sphene Butterfly pictured seemed to me to be a new addition to the collection as the Sphene Butterfly I remember featured a large green Sphene.

Demantoid Garnet complete with eye visible horsetail inclusions - Rainbow Moonstone (not rare but so uncommon to see in faceted gems) - Hauyne (a vivid blue gem discovered in Vesuvian lavas and named for the French Crystallographer René Just Haüy) - Natural Baja Pearls and not just one as a focal but strands!  

Quoting from the exhibit PR:  "Every gemstone is created in a unique geological environment that shapes its quality, color and appearance. While some places are associated with common gems, emeralds from Colombia, rubies from Burma (Myanmar), or diamonds from South Africa for example, the world's rarest gems come from little known locations and are found in very small quantities. Often named after the person who discovered them or the location where they were discovered, gems like benitoite or kunzite are found in very small quantities and only a fraction of those found have the ability to be cut or faceted for use in jewelry. In fact, such jewels are so rare that few outside of the most avid gem collectors know that they exist."

Smithsonian Collection 448.64 carats faceted by Buzz Gray
Photo: Kenneth Larsen
A highlight of the exhibit is the largest, gem quality cut morganite in the world to the best of the collectors' knowledge.  A morganite from the same pocket as this one was obtained from the lenders in 2011 and is on display at the Smithsonian Institution.  The stone at the Smithsonian (pictured) weighs 448.64 carats while this stone weighs 1,377 carats. Morganite, or pink beryl, gets its delicate peachy pink hue from trace quantities of manganese. Discovered in 1911, renowned gemologist George F. Kunz (at the time employed by Tiffany & Co.) named the find after his patron, financier J. P. Morgan. Madagascar is famous for its deep pink morganite gems, but many fine stones are found in Brazil, Afghanistan, and California. 

The stone in the collection of The National Museum of Natural History was faceted by Elvis “Buzz” Gray in a modified cushion cut. It is from Brazil and is the finest and largest morganite in the National Gem Collection to date. - See more at:

"Jewels of the Connoisseur is a presentation of some of the world's most uncommon gemstones. This collection has been assembled over decades by Buzz Gray and Bernadine Johnston who have played many roles in the world of gems and jewelry, including miner, gem dealer, gem cutter and jewelry designer. Their passion for collecting has always been driven by the opportunity to source the rarest of gems and their collection has grown over the years allowing for the creation of jewelry and art pieces."


The Bowers Museum has earned an international reputation through its world-class exhibitions, including Warriors, Tombs and Temples: China’s Enduring Legacy, Terra Cotta Warriors: Guardians of China’s First Emperor, Secrets of the Silk Road, and Mummies Death and the Afterlife: Treasures from the British Museum, as well as its own extensive art 
collections from throughout the Americas and the South Pacific. In addition, the Bowers’ Kidseum, located one block south of the main museum, engages children through extensive activities designed to encourage creativity and inspire imagination. 

You can also enjoy a leisurely luncheon at award-winning Tangata. Outdoor seating is also available, overlooking the Bowers historic mission-style courtyard from 11 a.m. to 3 p.m. Browse the rare and exotic at the Bowers Museum Gallery Store. It’s more than just a shopping trip—it’s a cultural experience. 

BOWERS MUSEUM, in Santa Ana, is centrally located in the heart of Southern California. 
Address: 2002 North Main Street, Santa Ana, CA 92706 
Tickets and Information/ 714.567.3600


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