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Entries in couture show (11)

Vegas Prep: Interview with Randi & Meaghan of For Future Reference

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We've got double the fun today, as our Vegas Jewelry Week interviews continue--we're talking with Randi Molofsky & Meaghan Flynn Petropoulos (can't wait to ask you to pronounce this for me in Vegas). The duo behind For Future Reference has a lot going on right now, including their first ever booth at Couture (shoutout booth 601), new clients, and a new brick-and-mortar studio located in NYC. Their places in the jewelry industry have evolved over time, but one thing is for certain, both have an intense love for gold, diamonds, gems and the people involved. Also tequila, sequins and vintage...and calling me Poodle. So glad Randi & Meaghan took the time out of their Couture prep schedule to answer our questions:


Randi's Answers

How many times have you attended Vegas jewelry week?

My first year was 2001, when the show took place at the Phoenician hotel in Scottsdale, AZ. Back then, everyone went to JCK AND Couture because they didn’t overlap. So if you think it’s exhausting now, it’s nothing compared to the two week slog it used to be! 


Biggest tip for Vegas jewelry week you’d give your rookie self on the eve of your first time going to Vegas?

Wear flats during the day. Took me about 15 years to let go of my vanity and figure this out. 


Name five things you ALWAYS bring to Vegas Jewelry Week.

Vitamin B tincture, sequins, business cards, Excedrin Migraine, Kloraine dry shampoo. 


One big difference from last year to this year?

We have our own booth! 


Favorite things about Vegas Jewelry Week.

Dinner at the SW Steakhouse is definitely up there. But mostly it’s getting to reconnect with everyone in the industry. After doing this for more than 15 years, I can say without question that it’s like a great big family reunion (that you actually want to attend). 


Biggest pet peeve about Vegas Jewelry Week.

Not being able to make it to the Antique show because we’re too busy. It’s devastating!


Weirdest thing to happen to you during Vegas Jewelry Week in the past.

I legitimately would not know where to begin, I could probably write a book on this very subject. But maybe it was a private dinner with Steve Wynn, followed by walking around the Vegas strip with him while he told us stories about all the hotels he built. Otherwise, being pregnant with my daughter Goldie and not far along enough to tell people. I carried the same half-full cocktail around all night to avoid suspicion! 


Meaghans Answers
How many times have you attended Vegas jewelry week?

THIS IS MY 6TH SHOW
 

Biggest tip for Vegas jewelry week you’d give your rookie self on the eve of your first time going to Vegas?

DON'T STRESS THE DETAILS. REGARDLESS OF YOUR PREPARATIONS, SETUP DAY WILL BE THE WORST DAY OF YOUR LIFE.  


Name five things you ALWAYS bring to Vegas Jewelry Week.

1) BLING GUARDS 2) CHANGES OF CLOTHES. I DON'T BELIEVE IN DAY TO NIGHT OUTFITS. 3) HYDRATING TONER 4) A FLASK OF TEQUILA, JK, BUT SERIOUSLY I ALWAYS HAVE A WATER BOTTLE AND COFFEE QUITE CLOSE. 5) ARGAN OIL
 

One big difference from last year to this year?

WE HAVE OUR OWN BOOTH! 
 

Favorite things about Vegas Jewelry Week.

CATCHING UP WITH PEOPLE WE ONLY SEE ONCE A YEAR 


Biggest pet peeve about Vegas Jewelry Week.

WHEN I MEET PEOPLE WHO CALL WHITE GOLD, 'SILVER.'
 

Weirdest thing to happen to you during Vegas Jewelry Week in the past.

SOMETHING WEIRD HAPPENS EVERY 14 SECONDS OR SO IN VEGAS, SO THERE'S TOO MANY TO LIST. ALSO, I DON'T WANT TO GET SUED.

 

 

 

xoxoGemGossip

WANT MORE? Check out my coverage from last year 

You can follow For Future Reference ---> @for_future_reference

Vegas Prep: Interview with Marion Fasel of The Adventurine

Marion Fasel -- The Adventurine Marion Fasel | Gem Gossip Marion Fasel | Gem Gossip Marion Fasel | Gem Gossip Marion Fasel | Gem Gossip Marion Fasel | Gem Gossip Marion Fasel | Gem Gossip Marion Fasel | Gem Gossip Marion Fasel | Gem Gossip Marion Fasel | Gem Gossip Marion Fasel | Gem Gossip

We are excited to kick off a fun series this week on Gem Gossip -- these next five blog features will get you excited and prepped for Vegas Jewelry Week, which is quickly approaching!  I've asked five people--a mix of designers, editors, and industry insiders--to contribute their insights from this epic event that happens once a year. I'm asking for advice, tips, favorite parts, and much more!  Whether it will be your first time attending or you are a professional (and can pack with your eyes closed), these interviews will pique your curiousity and you'll definitely learn a thing or two!  One thing is for sure, we all are SO EXCITED for Vegas.

We are starting the week out with Marion Fasel who is celebrating a big milestone in a few weeks--her online magazine The Adventurine turns one year old at the end of the month. She strategically launched the same day Vegas Jewelry Week began last year and has been covering all kinds of jewelry topics since then (many of which are pictured above). But don't let the small digit fool you, Marion has been in the jewelry industry for over 25 years. Most notably, she was InStyle's Contributing Editor of Fine Jewelry & Watches for nearly two decades, has written eight books, and has helped curate several museum exhibitions. It's no secret I am her number one fan and have been continually cheering her on since I discovered her flipping through the pages of InStyle magazine.  Let's find out more:

How many times have you attended Vegas jewelry week?

I have been 12 times.  I haven’t missed a jewelry week in Vegas since the Couture show relocated from the Phoenician in Scottsdale to the Wynn in 2005. 


Biggest tip for Vegas jewelry week you’d give your rookie self on the eve of your first time going to Vegas?

I’d give my rookie self a fun tip and a few practical tips.  

My fun tip is about gambling.  I’d tell myself to gamble.  You are in Vegas—some fun must be had. Then I would say, skip the slots.  Go in the early evening to the Encore where it can be quiet and find a Black Jack dealer with an empty table.  There are usually several.  Tell the dealer, you don’t know much about the game but would like to learn.  The dealers are incredibly knowledgeable and thrilled to share their tips.  If you allow them to guide you about what “the book” says for your hand, you will win. Trust me on this.  Just let them tell you how to play.

One practical tip, don’t let the bellhop take your luggage when you check in.  Just take it to your room yourself.  If you don’t, you have to wait for it.  They won’t leave it in your room unless you are there.  Sometimes they are fast, but sometimes they take a while which keeps you waiting in your room before hitting the trade show floor or doing anything your heart desires.  

Drink lots of water.  It’s the desert and you will get dehydrated even indoors.

Oh, and have a clear strategy for who you want to see.  There are a lot of great jewelry designers there and you won’t be able to see everyone, so do a careful edit on your agenda and leave breathing room to explore.  The time to explore is key.

 

Name five things you ALWAYS bring to Vegas Jewelry Week.

I wear heels so I bring Band-Aids.  I bring my gambling budget, usually around $200.  I bring loads of jewelry, because it’s a jewelry crowd and its Vegas so it’s fun to get decked out.  Beyond that it’s pretty standard phone charger, camera, computer.  I don’t travel light.  

 

One big difference from last year to this year?

Well, last year I launched my online magazine TheAdventurine.com one day before the Couture show started.  The timing was not a coincidence.  It’s really the beginning of the formal jewelry season.  You see how the trends and designers are shaping up at Couture.  I wanted my website anniversary to coincide with the Couture show.  I guess the biggest difference is now The Adventurine is humming away.  

 

Favorite things about Vegas Jewelry Week.

Winning at Black Jack.  I am kidding.  Meeting a talented new designer or just seeing a great new collection from an established designer are my favorite things.  

 

Biggest pet peeve about Vegas Jewelry Week.

It is a bit odd being indoors for a week.  During the course of the show, it’s not usual for some people to never step outside for more than a few minutes on the terrace off the trade show floor or to walk to the taxi stand to go out to dinner.  I try to make my way to La Cave as often as possible to sit in the outdoor café there for lunch, dinner or drinks.  

 

Weirdest thing to happen to you during Vegas Jewelry Week in the past.

I won a Vespa at the Couture Awards.  It’s probably one of the most wonderful and weird things that has ever happened to me anywhere.  I actually like public speaking but when I went on stage to accept the scooter, I was so shocked and happy, I was virtually speechless.  

 

 

xoxoGemGossip

WANT MORE? Check out my coverage from last year 

You can follow Marion --> @marionfasel & @theadventurine

Best of the Couture Show 2016

Couture | Gem Gossip Couture | Gem Gossip Couture | Gem Gossip Couture | Gem Gossip

Jacquie Aiche drew in buyers and press with window displays rich in colors, jewels and crystals from Tucson Gem Show. Inside, displays were already styled in layers and layers (the way her jewels are meant to be worn) making it easy for merchandisers to choose what to buy!

Couture | Gem Gossip

Stopped by Suzy Landa Jewelry to get a dose of COLOR--her juicy gemstones always brighten my day and so does the designer herself! So awesome!

Couture | Gem Gossip Untitled Untitled

Ilias Lalaounis' tradition of bold gold pieces is wonderfully carried out through his four daughters who now are continuing his legacy. Every year I enjoy seeing his designs, as they immediately transport me to Greece and his heyday of accessorizing stars. I couldn't pick a favorite!

Couture | Gem Gossip Couture | Gem Gossip Couture | Gem Gossip

Neha Dani wowed and inspired--I felt like I was back at the MET looking at the JAR exhibit for a second. The technicolored gold, hand-set diamonds, intricate work, where each mechanism, each stone, each design is precisely thought-out. Loved all!

Couture | Gem Gossip

Loved all the shapes, patterns and colors seen at Kavant & Sharart! This young husband and wife duo have really been cultivating their styles and merging them flawlessly. I want so many pieces from their line!

Couture | Gem Gossip Couture | Gem Gossip

Pamela Love tapped into every night sky watcher's dreams with the creation of this Lapis & diamond moon phase collar necklace. It feels so good in person too! I love her rings--the opal arrowhead was killer and the play-of-color on it was just right. And bet you didn't realize the ring on my pointer finger flips!

Couture | Gem Gossip

Jordan Alexander Jewelry first grabbed my attention at the Nashville Fashion Show. Now a year later, they've put their focus from pearls to diamonds and other gemstones. And I love all the use of gold!

Couture | Gem Gossip

I believe this is Anthony Lent's third year exhibiting and although I have a rule to see new designers every year, he is the only one to break this rule! Seen three years in a row and will never not be captivated by his designs.

Couture | Gem Gossip

Eva Fehren's geometric designs were amazing to see for the first time in person. Loved her display as well, as seen above.

"Danielle, please call you grandmother. She's worried about you. And did you make it to Vegas? You never even told us." I immediately deleted the voicemail from my iPhone, which was hot to the touch because of all the charging and photo-downloading it incurred while at the jewelry shows in Vegas. Something about Vegas every year I find it liberating to block out everything going on in my personal life and back home, and truly immerse myself in the four-day jewel fest called Couture.  Excuse me, five-day jewel fest--I just had to look it up, and wow, really?  Five days? A little excessive? NOPE. Never. In fact, this year I spent the most time I've ever spent at Couture and still felt like I needed more time. 

Couture 2016: Venni Vetti Vecci. And the best year yet. Remember that time I forgot my business cards? Ah, yes rookie mistake, but not this year. Remember that time I spent only six hours at Couture? Massively stupid mistake, but no, not this year.  I came prepared, I packed my bags efficiently, and made a handful of appointments (enough I could count on both hands--not too many where I felt like I had planned way too much in such short of time). This year was all about enjoying my time, having fun and learning. Sometimes events like these can be stressful and far too often taken way too seriously. What is the fun in that? 

This year, Couture was upbeat--the designers, the buyers, the atmosphere--even all my "whoops, I'm sorry I didn't make an appointment" appointments. I loved seeing people whom I haven't seen in forever and reconnecting with those who I sometimes talk to on a daily basis. 

Some highlights for me are shown above.  One of them being finally meeting Jacquie Aiche and experiencing her alluring booth full of layer heaven. I can easily see how and why people like Rihanna are die-hard fans of her jewelry--it is a lifestyle, not just a jewelry line. For a second year in a row, I clamored over Ilias Lalaounis' designs as if I were in Greece and happened to stumble upon his boutique.  It reminds me of my life goal of going to Greece and visiting both the Lalaounis museum and stores. Someday.

Other highlights include seeing the guys of Anthony Lent Jewelry who continually put the enchantment back into jewelry, as most designs have lost that aspect over time, especially all that is made now in factories or mass produced items. I love that everything he makes, he creates himself in his studio in Pennsylvania. Neha Dani was also a great highlight--such stunningly beautiful designs that easily wow. Huge fan of the technicolor gold she uses as well. Pamela Love had such a great line-up at her booth, of course the pièce de résistance for me was the lapis and diamond moon phase collar necklace that we took outside to photograph. Once posted on Instagram, it got 6,500+ likes--the most I've ever gotten in my 4+ year Instagram lifetime. 

Loved seeing everyone at Couture this year--if I didn't get a chance to swing by your booth, I'm SO sorry. Time was short but I will make a valiant effort next time around. Can you believe that I am totally stoked for next year already?! I am. 

Can't get enough of Couture? Read what I had to say from the years past: 2013, 2014, 2015

 

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Arik Kastan Launches New Designs at Couture

Arik Kastan | Gem Gossip Arik Kastan | Gem Gossip Arik Kastan | Gem Gossip Arik Kastan | Gem Gossip Arik Kastan | Gem Gossip

Arik Kastan has been busy debuting some new designs and collections out in Vegas earlier this month! The team was so excited to show off new pieces in front of thousands of buyers, press and journalists.

Take a look at the photos here, taken at the tradeshow...can you spot the new designs?  New favorites?!

>> Didn't attend the event, no worries--here's some things you missed! 

Vegas Favorites

Arik Kastan | Gem Gossip

A padlock on a thin chain is all you need for a night out in Vegas! And this particular piece has a surprise--one side is moonstone, the other is labradorite. Hey, there's your day to night change-up right there! ;)

Double-sided padlock, Price: $2,398

Arik Kastan | Gem Gossip

We've added lapis to our lineup and have never looked back! Completely obsessed with how this deep, opaque blue looks with all that is trending in fashion right now. Don't forget to stack for full potential.

Signature Three-Stone ring in Lapis, Price: $990

Arik Kastan | Gem Gossip

We've got the case of the blues, in the best way possible--we've introduced a whole lineup of aquamarine beauties while in Vegas! As you can see, this one is gorgeous on its own or stacks nicely.

Oval Eternity band in aquamarine, Price: $1,240

Arik Kastan | Gem Gossip

Feeling the summer heat over here in Vegas, which goes perfectly with our Blossom Stud earrings. We opted for the gemstone combo shown here, onyx and aquamarine--a little edgy, a little flirty. Definitely our kind of Vegas vibes.

Blossom Stud earrings, Price: $1,334

Arik Kastan | Gem Gossip

If we could have one wish out here in Vegas, it would be to spend some time by the pool! This ring will help with that--one glance leaves you feeling cooled off and in a tranquil state. Thanks turquoise and emeralds!

Pebble Stone ring, Price: $1,725

Arik Kastan | Gem Gossip

Last but not least, we couldn't help but add a little spice to our repertoire with these earrings! Bold and beautiful, set with garnets in a floral motif. Turn heads with these babies on!

Stained Glass Drop earrings, Price: $1,496

Arik Kastan | Gem Gossip

The latest favorite TRIO, with two brand new designs--the MOSAIC band on the very top and COMPASS ring right below. Look out for them to hit the website soon! Can't wait? Email info@arikkastan.com

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Rock Vault Amazes at Couture 2016

Rachel Boston Jewellery

Incredibly unique designs by Rachel Boston Jewellery, including some alternative bridal

Completed Works 3

The fluid, free-flowing designs of Completedworks are done in 18k yellow gold and are mesmerizing

Imogen Belfield

Newly crowned "Best in Gold" Couture Design Award Winner, Imogen Belfield, known for her "rockesque" designs

Jacqueline Cullen

Extremely cool Jacqueline Cullen Jewels are all done using Whitby Jet, yes just like the Victorian Jet jewelry from the late 1800s

Lily Kamper 2

These rings by Lily Kamper made me say, "WOW!" They are set with specially carved agates

Lily Kamper

And here are her signature necklaces done in Perspex and Marble set with end caps of 18k gold and gemstones, by Lily Kamper

RUIFIER

Was so excited to get to see RUIFIER's designs in person! The colors and geometric shapes are everything!

Shimell & Madden

Shimell & Madden also blew me away--extremely modern, with lines and curves making up the collection. Love the matte finish and the multiple shanks.

Jordan Askill Completed Works 2

Photo on the left, Jordan Askill's necklace made of rock crystal with a 3D panther carved out of white cacholong set on top. The photo on the right features more rings from Completedworks.

If you've ever wanted to sneak off, away from all the hustle and bustle of Couture, and be instantly amazed, refreshed and wishing you spoke with a British accent, I highly suggest checking out Stephen Webster's jewelry initiative called Rock Vault. This mini-ballroom hosts eight highly talented British designers, all whom are bringing their insanely gifted skills to the US. As I strolled along to each designer and spoke with them about their creations and inspirations, it became clear as to why Stephen Webster started Rock Vault in the first place!

"Rock Vault is a jewellery initiative to support, showcase and promote Britain’s most innovative, fine jewellery talent. Curated by Stephen Webster, this unique showcasing initiative has been developed by the BFC to nurture the creative fine jewellery talent based in London. It gives these designers the opportunity to further develop their businesses, as well as exposure amongst both UK and international media and retailers."

I felt positive vibes from every designer featured in Rock Vault--an overall sense of excitement and gratitude, radiating with pride for not only their work but to be showcased in Las Vegas at the Couture show. Above you'll find some photos I snapped, at least one from each designer featured in Rock Vault. Here's a little more about each designer:

Rachel Boston Jewellery: a young, talented designer born and based in London with a wild imagination. Nominated for numerous awards, including New Designer of the Year at the UK Jewellery Awards. I'm completely obsessed with her Anceps ring done in 18k yellow gold from her latest collection called CONTRA. Fun fact: Rachel got married in Vegas after the show! Congrats to her!!

Completedworks: Flowing lines, bold architecture, fluid shapes...Completedworks was on my list of "must-sees" for Couture since I began planning. Artistic Director Anna Jewsbury has a unique background in Mathematics and Philosophy, which truly defines the line. The Pillar collection is inspired by architectural ruins, like the classical columns, and they are done in white and black marble, jade set in 18k yellow gold.

Imogen Belfield: with a background in Fine Arts and Sculpture, one look at Imogen's designs and you can see how that path has influenced her creations. Her fine line just recently launched, with each piece being carvings all hand-done, which take on the form of rocks. The gemstones she uses are quite unique as well--I was taken back by the hot pink stone in one of her designs--so cool! It is actually an extreme heat-treated onyx (you can see the neon pink color in the photo I took above). She also just won the Couture Design Award for "best in gold" category!

Jacqueline Cullen: precious Whitby jet--a prehistoric fossil which dates back 180 million years which is most well-known in jewelry form from Victorian mourning jewelry. Jacqueline creates contemporary pieces of jewelry using this now very rare organic material. Her designs are innovative and have graced the pages of magazines and celebrities alike. 

Lily Kamper: her love for unusual material combinations and modern luxury define Lily's aesthetic. Her iconic pendant necklaces made of marble and perspex are all hand cut. She also has a bridal line just as unique as her other designs and her newest collection features hardstone jewels set in 18k yellow gold.

RUIFIER: I've been following this brand for a few years now and so excited to finally see their collection in person! RUIFIER knows how to push boundaries and create really unique pieces. They also have a knack for choosing great color combinations and gemstones for each design. 

Shimell & Madden: created by duo Luke Shimell and Emma Madden, this London-based jewelry line fuses high-quality craftsmanship with scientific design and universal concepts. Each piece looks as though it belongs in a museum, while at the same time, extremely wearable. I was instantly wowed by this jewelry line.

Jordan Askill: last but not least, this jewelry line is evocative, nature-inspired and jaw-dropping. From the gemstones used to the designs themselves, each part of the overall design is planned out with utmost precision. Jordan's background working for Alexander McQueen and throughout the fashion industry helps embellish his journey as a jewelry designer. His work and accolades extend far and wide for such a young designer, I can't wait to see what is next for him!

 

xoxoGemGossip