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Jewelry Navigator

Gems & Unique Jewelry for Shoppers Who Want to Stand Out Beyond Trends

Julie Lamb is a fun and highly experienced jewelry designer in New York City.

She’s been making jewelry since childhood. After attending an art magnet school in the city, she began her jewelry career and journey working as project manager and marketing specialist for big name companies.

Her jewelry company, Julie Lamb Fine Jewelry, contains a versatile selection of collections.  From whimsical lamb themed jewelry (a play on her last name with the “Be Ewe” collection), to her Metropolis and City collections, her jewelry is refreshingly unique.

Julie won second place in the MJSA Vision Award for designers in the 1-3 Years in Business category for her “Entrepreneur” ring, which reflects her sophisticated designs in her Limited Edition and Elements Collections.

Julie was a joy to talk to, and I was honored that she took time with me to share her story.

You can find Julie Lamb Fine Jewelry at julielambny.com, and on instagram, @julielambny.

 

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The Not So Scary Truth About Opals

 

Anne of Geierstein, also known as The Maiden of the Mist is a novel written by Sir Walter Scott, in 1829, and cast an unlucky shadow onto opal.

 

The story told of a young princess who wore an opal pin in her hair.

 

When she was happy, the opal radiated with its signature flashes of colors. When she was mad or sad, the opal faded in light and color.

 

Convinced she was evil or bewitched, holy water was sprinkled onto the opal to break the jewel’s spell, and at once, the princess fainted and collapsed.

 

The next morning, there was only a heap of gray ashes where she had been laid.

 

From that point on, opal was believed to be bad luck, and it suffered in popularity.

 

It regained attention and jewelry status to be pushed again by the jealous diamond industry, so it is speculated.

 

Today, opal is enjoyed by many for its fiery display and wide variety.

 

The most recent variety uncovered is a transparent, jelly variety, called Ethiopian opal.

 

A listener of the podcast reached out to me about a few Ethiopian opal stones she has that have discolored to a duller orangey - yellow color, and asked if I could explain the change of appearance.

 

I reached out to a few gemologists and specialists, MD Maya Gems, Diana Jarrett, G.G., and Matt Hopkins of Hopkins Opal.

 

Matt spent some time with me on a phone conversation and explained why the opal changed color, and also clarified the controversial advice to either oil or keep your opals in water.

 

Be sure to visit the website for the accompanying blog post that will feature links to the research, photos of opals and opal jewelry by Thesis Gems, Russell Trusso, and more!

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I met Emily Kuvin at the Jewelers of America Jewelry show in New York this past summer.

She was featured as one of a select few designers in the New Designer Gallery, curated and selected by Liz Kantner.

She’s been featured on Gem Gossip’s site with her Stella jewelry, and now I’m so excited to have her as today’s guest on the podcast.

What I find so interesting about Emily is how she balances the business and design side of her jewelry with the skills and background from her education and prior careers.

With a degree in history and English, she continued into the field of journalism, and was a news broadcast journalist.

She returned to school for a law degree, and practiced law before deciding to pursue a long lasting interest of jewelry design.

Her career experience and research skills as a journalist and in her law profession serve her well in her jewelry business.

She seamlessly balances a mix of aesthetic understanding with business practicality.

Currently, her two collections grow from classical influence, yet offer an elegant and whimsical style.

The Stella (the latin root of the word, star) collection consists of various sizes of organically formed stars with nine arms.

Using an organic star motif, one can interpret her Stella collection to express an appreciation for stars and a respect for the vast universe, or as a resemblance to the “kapow” super hero comic strip graphic as a way to recognize internal strength in a fun and whimsical way.

The largest design, Stella and a medium size, Stellina are featured as necklaces and earrings.

In the center of each Stella and Stellina piece is an oval gemstone surrounded by six small diamonds sprinkled around the center stone and in the middle of the stars’ arms.

Gems like morganite, tourmaline, amethyst, and turquoise are just a few of the gems she uses in all her designs.

The Classical Collection is the second line of jewelry featured in Emily Kuvin Jewelry Design.

Inspired by the iconic pyriamids of ancient Egypt, for which she had an affinity for studying as a young girl, Emily grew her Classical collection based on triangular forms and gems.

Emily combines the triangualr form that three small, bezel set gems with trillion shaped gems as the basis for her Classic Collection.

Both her collections are unique and offer a distinguished celebration to stand out with elegance that transitions between casual to formal wear.

I love how Emily Kuvin’s designs pack a sparkling punch to remind us who we are and to stand up for the super stars we are!

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What started out as a concrete jewelry for an architectural thesis project for her graduate program turned into a line of jewelry created by Emily Minton.

Now, Emily is a full time practicing partner at an archticecture firm in Baltimore, where at night and on weekends, you can find her designing and managing the manufacturing of her jewelry from NYC. 

Recnetly, her jewlery was featured on the models for Flying Solo's late summer fashion show.

I was surprised to learn that Emily is both the model and photographer for all her photo shoots for her jewelry.

From scenes that look like a moonscape, to the contrast of straight and curved lines set in the cornfields of Nebraska, Emily's photos on her site and Instagram feed are inspiring and make shoppers intrigued to know more about her jewelry.

You can find Minton online www.shopminton.com, and follow her on Instagram and Facebook.

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Episode 24 Making Smart Choices for Jewelry That Lasts

 

Busy people need to make smart choices for jewelry that lasts.

 

In this episode, I share tips and features to make jewelry selections that will save you from costly repairs, and ensure a lifetime of wear and enjoyment.

 

Thanks so much for joining me, and enjoy the episode!

About Brenna, the Jewelry Navigator
A Graduate Gemologist with a degree in geology, Brenna has worked in the retail sector of jewlery for nearly 15 years.

With a heart for the small business owner and independent designers, Brenna fills the gap between trade show and shopper looking for unique jewelry to define life and experience.

By sharing the missions, stories and creations of artisan and independent jewelers, Jewelry Navigator brings jewelry to the shopping public that may otherwise go undiscovered.

Visit jewelrynavigator.com for more, and follow on Instagram @jewelrynavigator

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AP Gemology & Jewelry With Thesis Gems

 

Last week’s episode was all about alternative jewelry to the class ring.

I shared so many other ring options that would be worn and not destined for the jewelry graveyards of forgotten jewelry box drawers.

 

 

This week, we continue with the school theme with a Thesis.

 

According to the Oxford dictionary, and Thesis is

 

“A statement or theory that is put forward as a premise to be maintained or proved.”

 

I vehemently stand by the thesis that jewelry is worth more than the money we pay for it.

 

Jewelry speaks the words we don’t have to tell someone how special they are to us.

 

Jewelry is like wearing a mini monument that continuously celebrates our most important life events.

 

Cate Claus is the creator and designer behind Thesis gems, and  brings more validation to my theory

 

 

Cate thoughtfully and throughly sources the materials used to create her jewelry, using only the finest gems recovered in the most earth friendly practices while yielding the most return to the local and regional communities and environments.

 

 

As stated on her website, her Motto for Thesis Gems is:

 

“We believe that people and the environment are more valuable than any gem. That’s why Thesis seeks sources that are committed to ethical treatment of workers and the land.  And we donate 1% of our gross sales to organizations fighting to conserve and defend our planet. That's our thesis. Guaranteed forever.”

 

I feel Cate does a great job proving and supporting her thesis, and she does it all while maintaining a full time practice as a pediatrician in the San Francisco area.

 

I’m so happy to share her story today!

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Episode 22: No Ring Left Behind - Alternatives to Class Rings

Do you still have your class ring? Has it been abandoned in a drawer or jewelry box?

Class rings aren't as popular as they were in the height of their popularity, say in the 1950's through the 1980's.

For decades, graduating from high school and college had been celebrated with a coveted class ring.

West Point Military Academy began the tradition in 1835, and from there, other schools adopted the concept with their own rings.

The first class rings were all metal, or set with gemstones like onyx and carnelian.

Today, many students are choosing to forego class rings.
Some reasons may be cost, lack of interest, or opting for other gifts, like electronics or cash.

Whether you or your student decides to show school pride and celebrate academic merits, graduating from high school and college is a big deal, and worthy to be celebrated with jewelry.

In this podcast, I share alternative rings that will hold interest and have style versatility beyond the year of graduation, so you don't make a purchase only to be abandoned in a drawer or jewelry box a few months or years later.

The jewelers and designers featured in this episode are:

  • California Girl Jewelry
  • Jill Kathleen Designs
  • R. Simantov
  • Emily Kuvin Jewelry Design
  • DRU. Jewelry
  • Hugo Kohl Jewelry
  • Rita Jewels
  • Thesis Gems
  • May Came Home
  • Crash Jewelry
  • Minton - Premium Architectural Jewelry

For links, photo features of the jewelry mentioned in the episode, please visit the blog post on www.jewelrynavigator.com 

Follow Jewelry Navigator on Instagram @jewelrynavigator

Thank you for choosing Jewelry Navigator for your unique jewelry selections, and enjoy the episode!

About Brenna, the Jewelry Navigator
A Graduate Gemologist with a degree in geology, Brenna has worked in the retail sector of jewelry for nearly 15 years.

With a heart for the small business owner and independent designers, Brenna fills the gap between trade show and shopper looking for unique jewelry to define life and experience.

By sharing the missions, stories and creations of artisan and independent jewelers, Jewelry Navigator brings jewelry to the shopping public that may otherwise go undiscovered

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Episode 21 And the Winners are…!!!  Juler's Row Giveaway, & A Look Back

 

As promised, today, I’ll be announcing the winners of the Julers Row Giveaway.

If you missed it, last week, in the Jewelry Navigator Boarding Lounge, Julie Bishop of Juler’s Row and Katherine and Josephine shared her story of how she successfully runs two jewelry businesses, IN

 

Episode 20 Back to School Jewels With Juler’s Row Home Decor Jewelry Art

 

 

We ran a giveaway contest for one of two of her jewelry theme decor items, of either a cushion cut diamond tote bag, or an Opal watercolor rendering canvas print, both with a retail value of $145, and both items are perfect for  back to school = the tote bag with its big, beautiful cushion cut diamond, and the opal watercolor print to brighten up and add sparkle to any dorm or apartment wall!

 

In the contest on Instagram, instructions were to like the posts, follow both me and Julie at Juler’s Row, and tag 3 friends to enter.

 

All of her jewelry and home decor items are made in the U.S., with the exception of the katherine and josephine satin straps, and

the artwork prints used for her Juler’s Row home decor items are all designed by Julie, and hand painted by her mother, Amy, also a designer.

 

Before I announce the winners, I want to thank everyone for listening and supporting Jewelry Navigator Podcast.

 

I’ve really enjoyed visiting with and sharing the jewelry and the designer’s stories with you.

 

I look forward to bringing more stories and helpful tips in upcoming episodes.

 

If you haven’t heard all the episodes, in today’s I re-cap a few of them so you can enjoy a quick synopsis, or created mental notes to go back and hear episodes you missed.

 

For the remainder of August, and possibly into the first week of September, I’ll be taking a hiatus, but will return with new episodes.

 

I’m taking time to assess where I can add and create valuable service to you as shoppers and listeners, as well as to the artists and designers I feature.

 

For now, let’s congratulate the winners of the Juler’s Row diamond tote bag and opal watercolor rendering canvas print

 

The Cushion Cut Diamond tote bag goes to  Lori Cooper @lcooperfabulous

 

and the Opal Print goes to Julie Bergstein Romenanko who is @justjulesllc on Instagram.

 

Congratulations to both Lori and Julie for winning Juler’s Row wonderful creations! I’m so happy for both of you, and thank you for following and supporting me and Julie on Instagram!

 

The format for the podcast has mostly been visits with guest designers and jewelers.

 

A few have been solo episodes where I’ve shared information that is probably not common knowledge for shoppers, and I hope has been helpful.

 

I’ve thoroughly enjoyed getting to know the jewelers and designers, and sharing their jewelry and stories with you.

 

The following are clips from six of the episodes - there are fourteen others waiting to be heard and enjoyed.

 

 

I met Samantha Jackson at a show in New York in February.

I was so excited to find her, and you can hear the rest of her story, but here’s a quick clip from Episode 14 The Virtues of Heavenly Vices Fine Jewelry With Samantha Jackson

 

 

Many of the designers I feature are women, but there’s one who captured my attention with her innovative concept of using the parts from late luxury and sports cars, like ferraris, maseratis, and prosches that sustained minor damages, from her husband’s auto body shop,

Christi Schimpke from the third episode, Q & A With Crash Jewelry Founder Christi Schimpke

 

It’s important to me to help shoppers understand the proper terminology and common misconceptions with jewelry terminology and concepts.

One of my pet peeves is referring to diamonds as chips, and the misnomer of using semi in combination with the word precious when describing gemstones.

 

Here’s a clip from

Episode 11 Chips are for Lunch, Not Diamonds and Other Helpful Jewelry Tips

 

 

Marc knobloch generously shared so much information on diamonds that i had to make two episodes!

Marc is a third generation diamond specialist in NY’s diamond district.

 

Marc and I spoke during the late afternoon while he was on his way home, so there are sounds of the city’s busy commute

 

He helped clarify a few of the complex concepts when shopping for a diamond, from

Part 1 and 2 of Diamonds Demystified with Diamond Industry Insider, Marc Knobloch

 

 

 

I love all jewelry, but have  a special place in my heart for colored gemstones, and when they’re big, rare, unusual and beautiful, I really take notice, like the jewelry made by CGJ by an exceptional mother - daughter team in San francisco.

 

 

Episode 10: Champagne, Rare Gemstones, and Jewelry With Denise Forbes of California Girl Jewelry

 

 

 

Capturing the essence and revealing the stories and meanings behind the styles and designs reflected by the significant cultural changes experienced during the Industrial Age in America is the gift Hugo Kohl offers through his exclusive vintage and antique style jewelry.

 

I was lucky to catch Hugo kohl of Hugo kohl jewelry  in the summer when things were a little slower, so was treated to a tour of his factory, workshop, boutique and museum

in Harrisonburg, VA.

 

He’s made a career from researching and discovering the tools and methods used to make the first jewelry created by the early methods and tools of the industrial era from the 1800’s.

 

The tour was recorded as the audio for the podcast, so you can hear the sounds of the machines, along with ambient music played at the work stations and in the museum which you can visit and tour

 

Episode 16 America’s Vintage Jewelry Legacy with Hugo Kohl of Hugo Kohl Jewelry

 

Thank you for joining me in these first few months of the podcast.

 

If you’ve enjoyed listening and learning about the jewelry and the designers, I’d so appreciate if you would leave a review, and be sure to visit their websites and instragram feeds and say hello, inquire about a gift design you have in mind, or just tell them how wonderful they are!

 

Until I return in September, reach out and say hello, tag me, message me - I’d love to hear from you!

 

And always remember - fasten you jewelry first before helping others with theirs!

 

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Welcome to the 20th episode of the jewelry navigator podcast!

Today’s guest is Julie Bishop, creator and designer behind not just one designer jewelry business, but TWO - Juler’s Row, and Katherine and Josephine.

To help celebrate the 20th episode, and bring some extra sparkle to back to school, I have a very special back to school jewel giveaway, collaborating with my guest, Julie Bishop, and her Juler’s Row home decor items.

Juler’s Row started as a blog, and a way to explore multiple areas of jewelry design.

With bench, metal smithing and design experience, Julie understands the processes from concept to jewelry.

As her career’s evolved, she’s gained more hands on experience from behind the scenes as well as from the boutique counter, assisting clients with custom designs.

Using the concept of the variety one finds in a jewelry district, along with her name,  Juler’s Row is a line of jewelry art - both wearable and decorative - for yourself and your home!

The jewelry of Juler’s Row is sterling silver and yellow gold vermeil over sterling silver, accented with linear and geometric black and white enamel detail, set with rose cut white topaz gemstones, black onyx and fresh water pearls.

Juler’s Row home decor line grew out of an innovative solution to Julie’s desire to have jewelry wall art, and decorative accessories.

 Unable to find just what she wanted, she created a line of wall art and home decor items created and designed between she and her mother, Amy.

The two collaborate on designs, then Amy hand sketches and accents the details with watercolors the antique jewelry, tiaras and gemstones featured on Juler’s Row decor items.

The artwork is then transferred to canvas wall art, tote bags, accent pillows, wallpaper, and paper prints.

Julie’s other line, Katherine and Josephine, is a line of vintage inspired jewelry designs, which connects antique style with a relevant update for today and for years to come.

Katherine and Josephine offers a variety of styles, from minimalistic tube cuffs, set with diamonds on the ends, to jewelry set with French cut stones.

Julie’s fine jewelry line of Katherine and Josephine creates jewelry that’s charming and classical using accents like milgraining and bright cut stones.

 

GIVEAWAY!!!

 

As a special treat for back to school, and to help you carry your jewels to school, and deck out a dorm or study room with jewelry, Julie and I are doing and Juler’s Row Giveaway for not one, but TWO Juler’s Row items.

 

The first one is a Double sided heavy cotton twill tote bag with belting straps, with a Cushion Cut Diamond, Sketched in pencil, painted in watercolor, printed on cotton material, allowing you to sparkle as you return to school, or wherever you go!

 

The Bag measures 16.25"X15.”, and the diamond was painted by Julie’s mother, Amy, and has a retail value of $145!

 

The second giveaway and back to school jewel, is a Canvas Print of an

 

Opal Layout Rendering sketched in pencil, painted in watercolor on 140 lb. paper and transferred to canvas.

 

The Opal Layout was designed by Julie, and painted by Julie’s mom, Amy.  

The wrapped canvas is 12X12 inches, and 3/4 inch deep, with hanging wire.

Retail Value: $145

 

I originally had the giveaway scheduled for today, but wanted to give you all more time and chances to win - so, to enter to win either the Cushion Cut Diamond Tote or the Opal Layout Rendering Canvas print, you’ll want to follow both Jewelry Navigator and Juler’s Row on instagram or Facebook, @jewlerynavigator or @julersrow and tag three friends, and include the hashtag, #julersrowgiveaway.

 

So, you and your friends have a chance to win either the Diamond Tote bag or a jeweled opal canvas print - both perfect for a stylish return to school or to add more sparkle to any office or study area!

 

I’ll announce the winner on next week’s podcast, and you have until Sunday, August 12, to enter!

 

I’m so excited to be sharing Julies’s story and her unique jewelry home decor items and jewelry with you, and am grateful for her generous participation in my very first give away!

 

Good luck!

 

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May came home is a fresh and colorful jewelry line designed by the versatile and talented jeweler and designer, Deborah Halperin.

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Inspired by the e.e. cummings poem, “maggie, millie, molly and may,” Debbie brings the joy of discovering the beauty around us through colorfully graphic jewelry designs of enamel jewelry created in both sterling silver and 14kt yellow gold.

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Lucky clovers, tiny bunnies, suns, moons, and doves are just a few of the whimsical themes within her colorful jewelry.

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Episode 19 shares how Debbie’s journey and second degree in graphic design has delivered her to where she is in her jewelry career today.

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I met Debbie and her jewelry at the JA Show in New York recently, and am so glad I did!

 

I was drawn to her exhibit because of the variety of brightly colored enamel jewelry she makes.

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But what’s especially unique about her colorful and graphically pleasing designs, is that many of them are reversible, with one side of the enamel colors as one color theme, and the other side, a mirror image, or complimentary design.

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All May Came Home Jewelry is made in the USA, in New York City.

#artisanjewelry #madeinamerica #womenjewelers #poetry

#colorful #happyjewelry

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