Fall Jewelry Showcase at Pratt Institute

A couple of weeks ago I attended an evening lecture and jewelry showcase at Pratt Institute — two exciting and thought-provoking events! The first was a talk and book signing with Damian Skinner, the editor of Contemporary Jewelry in Perspective, a newly released book in collaboration with the Art Jewelry Forum. His information about contemporary jewelry along with the discussion that followed with the audience was fascinating. It is a solid book with a lot of topics to consider. Keep an eye out for my review of it in the coming months!

Contemp Jewelry signed insta copyThe second part of the evening was a jewelry showcase that featured work created by faculty, alumni, and current students. It was wonderful to see these pieces all exhibited together. A level (dis)playing field of sorts! Here were some of my favorites:

Lauren Curry, class of 2014, “My 1st Time Using Chopsticks”, 2013. Brass, purple heart wood, garnets, emeralds, crushed chicken bones.

Lauren Curry chopsticks insta copy

You might remember Lauren’s name from my previous post about the Pratt Junior Jewelry Exhibition — she was the winner of the Tiffany & Co Foundation Jewelry Design Scholarship! Although these chopsticks are more art object than jewelry, I loved them for a number of reasons. It’s hard to tell their scale from the photo but these are actually very oversized chopsticks, which adds to the memory of everyone’s first time with chopsticks. Didn’t they feel enormous and gawky in your hand? Lauren also set a garnet and emerald at the top ends of the sticks, which made them feel very regal and important. I couldn’t help but love that they are made of purple heart wood. Makes it sound like she was going into first battle with a plate full of food, armed only with these courageous chopsticks! And last but not least is the metal chicken head that they rest on. A casualty of the food war?

William Yang, class of 2014, “Black Oyster Necklace”, 2013. Sterling silver, brass, fossilized oyster, green amethyst, champagne quartz, smokey quartz, peridot, black pearl, coffee grounds.

William Yang oyster necklace insta copy

I love how futuristic this necklace is! I can just imagine some distant time when we all wear necklaces like these as a source of power. Energy is drawn from the “fossil fuel” of the oyster shell in the center of the necklace, and using gemstone buttons and cogs it is filtered in pathways upwards. This necklace would have fit in perfectly with the recent LOOT exhibit at MAD!

Alexia Cohen, technician and faculty, “Wrist Expansion 17”, 2007. Gold-plated brass frame, white elastic cord.

Alexia Cohen bracelet insta copy

Alexia actually had a different version of this bracelet on display, with rhodium-plated brass and black elastic cord, but I loved this lighter gold version that she was wearing so much that I took a photo of it instead. She let me try it on and it was lighter and softer than you might imagine. Fantastically flexible and comfy. It made me feel a bit like a superhero (perhaps it’s all that webbing?) because of the concept that I could extend the size of my wrist into a huge gold outline. For when I need to be extra powerful!

Shuoyuan Bai, class of 2014, “Untitled Necklace”, 2013. Copper, transparent enamel, silver leaf.

Ryan Bai necklace insta copy

Yet another piece that totally could have been at LOOT! I love how each round on this necklace looks like a gorgeous piece of stained glass. The blues and green are so vibrant. Definitely a statement piece!

Taylor Kumiko Hermes, class of 2012, “Letting Go: Anger”, 2012. Cross body brooch. Brass, handmade Japanese paper, fishing line.

taylorhermes3Taylor’s body brooch has so many layers to it. I love that it goes across the body (it has pin mechanisms at the top and bottom to hold it in place) in a completely unique and interesting way. The little pieces of paper are feather thin and go from light to dark as they travel down the body. There is so much movement in this — the pieces of paper are literally flying off of you. But the symbolism is what really gets me on this one. To think that this piece of jewelry could symbolize the act of letting go of anger — of taking all those little dark negative pieces that accumulated over time into anger and bursting them apart. It is powerful and artistic and just fascinating. How therapeutic it must be to wear this piece!

Which is your favorite? Would you love to try on that webbed expansion bracelet? Or perhaps the stained glass necklace against a little black dress? Maybe a little catharsis from wearing the body brooch? They’re all so cool. Until next time!

P.S. Although I mention Pratt a million times in this blog post, I was not paid or perked to write about this exhibition. I am simply a lover of gorgeous jewelry created by awesome designers!

 

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Q&A with Debi Griffin of Illustrative Moments

Last week I had the pleasure of speaking with Debi Griffin, the amazingly talented artist and owner of Illustrative Moments. She creates custom bridal illustrations and has over ten years of experience in luxury bridal design. Her renderings are created in a high fashion design, and are an amazing keepsake for the modern bride. Through photos of the dress and bride, Debi is able to capture this chic and glamorous moment in a completely new and exciting way. As a fellow artist I was more than excited to talk to her about the business and her designs!

Image courtesy of Illustrative Moments

Image courtesy of Illustrative Moments

Molly: Tell me a little about how you decided to start the business. 

Debi: When I was seven years old I got Brides magazine and that’s how I learned how to draw. I would draw the brides and they were like my paper dolls. I ended up going to school for fashion and that’s when Vera Wang was really hot and I ended up getting this amazing job there. A few years later I got a call from Amsale, and from fall of 1999 until this January I have been with them. I was the Senior Designer, so I did all that plus I was sketching for everybody, for private clients, for celebrities, for the magazines. My friends would see the sketches when I would bring them home from work and they would say “oh my god I want that, can you do my wedding dress?” Before I knew it I was doing sketches for their aunts and cousins. When I got married my friend who’s a graphic designer suggested I draw a fashion sketch to put on the invite and I thought, that’s an amazing idea!

When I found out I was pregnant over a year ago I decided I would need something to keep me going when I’m home. We live on Long Island and the fashion industry is not exactly child friendly, and my husband is a cop so we decided I was going to stay at home. This business was the perfect option because I could still be involved in the industry.

Image courtesy of Illustrative Moments

Image courtesy of Illustrative Moments

In December of 2011 I started a small Etsy shop with just a few sketches, and I was still just throwing the idea around. I had to take that first step, and within a day I had someone asking if I could sketch their girlfriend in her favorite going out dress. It didn’t take long for the press, and it’s been amazing. I wish I had a lot more time to do it and really throw myself into it. I’ve had some very amazing experiences. I just had a bride who for all ten of her bridemaids she gave each of them a sketch as part of their gift bag. She sent me the video of all of them opening it up, which was really cool.

When I was a student I would love looking at fashion sketches in Harper’s Bazaar and Vogue, and I would always say I would love to have one of those. There’s something about a fashion sketch versus someone drawing, it’s the proportions and everything. A blogger told me it’s a very coveted item coming from somebody in the fashion industry, to have that person do a sketch of the bride. At Amsale it’s a high caliber of brides, and now I’m able to sketch brides from every economic standing. It’s just amazing to be able to offer it to everyone now.

It must feel great to be able to make everyone feel special. They don’t have to own a million dollar dress in order to have a beautiful fashion sketch!

These days people don’t hold onto their dresses, they rent them, they give them away. My wedding dress I let one of my good friends wear to Vegas, everything down to the earrings I had on my ears. I enjoyed it for my time, now it’s going somewhere else. A couple can only saturate their walls with so many photos, and this is a new option. And it can be handed down. I’ve done generational sketches – there was a woman who had me do a sketch of her grandmother, her mother, and her wedding dress all framed in a tryptic that she put up on her guest room wall.

Image courtesy of Illustrative Moments

Image courtesy of Illustrative Moments

What a lovely keepsake! Going back a little, for college you went to Pratt?

I loved my experience at Pratt; I thought it was great. I still mentor, and I’ve been the senior critic for their bridal department for several years. It’s great to give back and work with kids and be able to say I’ve been in your position, I know exactly what you’re going through. Sometimes these kids have no idea what they’re about to get into in the industry, they think it’s all Project Runway and I’m like no, it’s isn’t, it’s not that way. I would love to teach there one day, in the next couple years. We’ll see what happens!

I am a huge fan of colored pencils for my own art. You use colored pencils as well as ink for your sketches?

I use Prismacolor pencils, permanent stylist pens, Prismacolor markers, I accent with metallic pens, and sometimes some white paint in it to give it some texture. I like to use a lot of mediums because once it’s finished it has a lot of texture. I always send clients the scans of the work before I mail them, and I’m like please don’t think this is what you’re getting, this is just a flat scan on a computer, when you get it it’s layers and layers of color. I love working with multi-medium, it’s a great way to bring life to your artwork.

Image courtesy of Illustrative Moments

Image courtesy of Illustrative Moments

All that sketching must take its toll. Does your hand hurt a lot?

Last night I was up pretty late working on a lace dress and I was like, I’m going to have some major arthritis soon! But I’m so finicky about details, I’ve seen where people sketch things and for lace they will just make squiggle lines, but I try and really mimic the lace and the beadwork and the directions they go in. I’m really detail oriented on that aspect.

So is lace the hardest detail of a sketch?   

Yes, lace is the most labor intensive. You’re going from a life-sized dress to drawing it on a small scale and trying to get the same characteristic across on a 9×12” piece of paper. No matter how many hours I spend on it, in the end it’s just so beautiful, all the work is worth it.

Image courtesy of Illustrative Moments

Image courtesy of Illustrative Moments

And what do you do if you make a mistake?

I start over.

I knew that was going to be your answer!

One time I almost got all the way through, I was finishing it up and something happened, my hand just went out of the line. I could have put flowers there, sometimes people ask for a bouquet, but I was like no, I have to start all over. My husband was like, you’re crazy! But I had to do it, I couldn’t send out something I wasn’t proud of. It’s quite grueling, once you get so far into it and to make a mistake. I try so hard not to let that happen but it does happen. I never let my clients know about it, but there are some people who have had their sketch done several times!

Image courtesy of Illustrative Moments

Image courtesy of Illustrative Moments

How long does it take you to complete a sketch? 

Once I have the photos, if I’m not working on several at one time, from laying it out in pencil, and then inking it and coloring it and then doing the texture and my whole matting process, it takes about four to five hours, and that’s uninterrupted which is rare. Some brides I’m really inspired by and I’m feeling it and it goes smoothly and quickly, but sometimes I pencil it in one night and then just let myself breathe. If you do too much at once that’s when you make mistakes or it doesn’t turn out how you wanted it. Or sometimes I’ll just do it all at once and it’s a really natural process.

Are there some dresses that are more fun to draw than others?

I love the brides that are really high fashion. I had a bride who wore three gowns in her wedding. She got married on New Year’s Eve and she had an amazing gown that was a Carolina Herrera customized ball gown. But then she also had a really fun Vera Wang gown and it had a black sash, big charcoal crusted beads, and it was a fit and flare but the neckline was all twisted and wrinkled, and she had this amazing black fascinator with black netting over her face. To this day that was probably one of my favorite sketches. It was so much detail and it was very chic, the whole feeling of it. When you have pops of color like that, or brides now who have all this texture in the skirts that looks like it’s torn up fabric, that’s when you can really let loose and it’s not such a tight hand. I just kind of go with it and make it look almost like fantasy.

Image courtesy of Illustrative Moments

Image courtesy of Illustrative Moments

Do you wish you could use more color in your sketches? 

I would love to get into some more color. I’ve thought about offering the option to do prom and sweet sixteen. I had a photographer who does lots of red carpet photography ask if I would illustrate her favorite Oscar gown. That would be awesome, I would love to get into that area. After drawing lots of white and ivory gowns you have to make the rest of it more important and stand out. You don’t know how many white Prismacolor pencils I have down to half and inch!

Image courtesy of Illustrative Moments

Image courtesy of Illustrative Moments

So you illustrated your own dress?

I illustrated my own gown, and I custom-made my wedding album through a book binder, so the opening page of my wedding album is my fashion sketch. All the dresses were custom-made for the wedding, I even have my niece and all my bridesmaids dresses sketched, and then also I photographed the whole process of the dresses getting cut at work. It’s pretty cool, it’s like a diary of the gowns getting made. I still want to make my own piece and have it framed for the wall one day after I get done with everyone else’s.

It sounds like you’re so busy you’ll never get around to it!

My husband thinks I’m crazy, I’m always like I have to do work and he says, you don’t have to do this right now! I just love the creative aspect of it. I don’t sleep, I start working after my son goes to bed at night, and at nine o’clock I pull everything out and I’ll work until two in the morning. I love to draw brides. It’s been with me for thirty years now, since I was seven years old, this “drawing of the brides”. It’s very relaxing to me, and I love looking at everyone’s wedding photos. It becomes this personal thing where we’re emailing back and forth, I love it, it’s so much fun to be part of people’s special day.

What’s your next step?

I would love to get into paper goods and stationary. Ceci Johnson of Ceci New York, that amazing wedding invitation line, just had me do a sketch of her amazing Oscar de la Renta gown for her anniversary issue. I would love to collaborate one day with her, or any paper company. I would love to have my own line where the thank you notes could be of the wedding gown, or even their bridal shower invites. There are so many amazing things you can do with paper. And it doesn’t even have to be bridal, it would be nice to just keep doing some sort of fashion sketches.

Image courtesy of Ceci New York

Image courtesy of Ceci New York

My nieces would love when I would Xerox my sketches before I would color them in, and every time I would see them they would say “did you bring bride sketches?” and that was their coloring books. Their mother was like you have to make some wedding coloring books, these girls love that stuff! And all I could think was oh no, another thing for me to stay up all night thinking about!

Why is it that in your fashion sketches there is only one eye, and the other side of the face has nothing?

In the industry, at Badgley Mischka their sketches look like aliens, and Isaac Mizrahi sketches are very scribbly, you almost can’t tell what the gown looks like. For illustrators you want to have your own identity, where people will say that was a “Debi” sketch. The one eye came up because when I would illustrate when I was younger I would always get one eye perfect and then the other eye would almost be like Shannen Doherty from 90210, where the one eye would be a little higher than the other. It was my style, the one eye. People for the most part think it’s cool, but sometimes mothers will order a piece and say “I really want my daughter to have two eyes”, and I say that’s ok I can do it, it’s just my little take on it. You don’t know how many times I have to answer that question!

Image courtesy of Illustrative Moments

Image courtesy of Illustrative Moments

On a somewhat serious note, I know that you and your family had a hard time during Hurricane Sandy last year.

We lost our house. We lived right on the water in Long Island, and we got to our house after the storm and there was four feet of water in it. We had just remodeled and bought all new furniture seven months before the storm. In March of 2012 we had refurnished the entire house, the closets, the baby’s room, a brand new kitchen, everything. Since October 29th we have been living with my sister-in-law. On Monday we will hopefully get the keys to our new house, which is far away from the water! I just can’t go through it again. I lost everything. I lost portfolios of artwork, all of my stuff for the business, our wedding albums were gone. It’s very sad. When the storm hit we had a mandatory evacuation the night before, and the fire department was coming around with bullhorns saying we had to leave. I had two clients with sketches that were due the next week, so I brought my big drawing board and all my folders and my colored pencils, so the major things came with me. I was somehow still able with Sandy to fulfill the orders.

That is some serious dedication to your clients! Was there any bright side to all of the sadness?

All we had was our overnight bags, that’s what we were left with. When we came home we had to throw everything out on the curb. But once I got past all of that I realized that I was lucky. I was lucky that we had someone to take us in. My sister-in-law had a room for us, but we could have easily been in a shelter, or we could have been hurt. I keep trying to tell myself every time I get sad about it, every day I remember oh my god, that was in that drawer, something that you can never buy back. I hope it never happens again but now you just have to think that it could, that it’s always a possibility.

I’m so glad to hear that you’re getting to move into a new place. And hopefully you will get to have your new space soon so you can sketch even more amazing pieces for your clients! 

 

A huge thanks to Debi for the wonderful conversation! If you would like to know more about her business, Illustrative Moments, you can check out her website, Facebook, Instagram, and Twitter!

UPDATE: Check out the amazing bridal illustration that Debi did for me of my wedding dress! The sheen of the metallic pens in person for the veil and shoes is awesome. I couldn’t be happier. Thanks so much Debi!

mollyillustrativemoments

 

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Pratt Institute’s 2013 Senior Show

Three weeks ago I attended Pratt’s Junior Jewelry Exhibition on its Brooklyn campus, which featured the amazing work of twelve talented juniors. Monday night I had the pleasure of attending the annual Pratt Senior Show, a huge exhibition of work by hundreds of seniors with various majors, in the Hammerstein at the Manhattan Center in NYC.

Image courtesy of Pratt Institute

Image courtesy of Pratt Institute

The night I attended the exhibition included a champagne reception for industry professionals, and all the students had resumes and business cards at the ready next to their work. It was a bit like a reverse job fair, with professionals seeking out students to talk about potential jobs. Since it was a special reception, we also received some very cool swag:

Action Journal Pratt

Can you think of any better promotional gift at an art college exhibition than a sketchbook? As a bonus, this Action Journal (made by Behance in collaboration with New Leaf Paper) has a section on the right side of each page for listing the action steps needed to make your ideas come to life. Very excited to try it out!

After powering through the intense crowd huddled around the crackers, cheese, and vegetable platters (college students are like my cat; they act as if they’ve never eaten before!) I made my way through the works from various departments on display. I wish I could tell you about all the amazing work I saw — one of my favorite project themes was a rebranding and reimagining of current mainstream brands — but this is a blog post about the jewelry department. I will tell you that this cut out of Tom Selleck, part of Michael J. Silber’s thesis “Digital Humor Theory”, made me very happy:

Tom Selleck Pratt

Now for the really fun stuff, the jewelry! Eleven seniors showcased their thesis jewelry collections, and each had a very clear vision. Let’s start with Sara Cochran, who is greatly inspired by insects, and her beautiful Tarsus bangles in silver:

Image courtesy of Sara Cochran

Image courtesy of Sara Cochran. Photo credit: Andreana Bitsis

I really loved these bracelets from the moment I saw them. They are immediately recognizable as bug legs. But because they are created in silver with a patina that gives them a gold sheen, it elevates the look and makes it sleek and wearable. You could wear these with an edgy jacket or a summery dress. So versatile!

The next piece is by Simonne Feeney from her collection “Atomica”. This necklace is a take on the traditional 1950’s pearl necklace:

Image courtesy of Simonne Feeney. Photo credit: Andreana Bitsis

Image courtesy of Simonne Feeney. Photo credit: Andreana Bitsis

The necklace is hand crafted using brass wire that is then powder coated. It gives it a white wicker effect and felt very much like a piece you would wear in the springtime. Simonne created the necklace to show an Atomic Era take on the jewelry status symbol of that time. I am guessing she did not necessarily set out to design it as the fun and playful necklace I see, but I can’t help it! I bet it looks especially great on the neck, since the open spaces in the rounds would show your skin underneath. Very pretty and cool!

Kelly DeKenipp, whose collection was titled “Adornment and Torment”, created this “Splitter Bracelet”, a spikey-cool silver bracelet with gold leaf:

Spikey bracelet PrattThe gold leaf is in the inner edges of the spikes and gives them great dimension. Plus Kelly filed down the tips of the triangles, so when you wear the bracelet it doesn’t scratch at all. I love how this bracelet can be interpreted in so many ways. It could be a monster’s mouth with the top and bottom teeth bared… or perhaps it is more structural, like a bridge turned inside on itself? No matter what you see in it, it’s sure to get compliments!

Next up was Lia Branning-Chen and her collection “Scales on Scales”. I fell in love with this trio of copper and powder-coated bracelets:

Image courtesy of Lia Branning-Chen

Image courtesy of Lia Branning-Chen

These bracelets are inspired by scales and the Chinese dragon, but I actually fell in love with them because they reminded me of beautiful lace doilies, especially the center one. Can you see it? The powder coating gives them this really nice soft and smooth finish. So delicate and feminine!

To finish off this jewelry love-fest is the “Porous Gold | Precious Ruins” collection by Jenna Pierson, and her fantastic necklace:

Golden Bottle Necklace

Image courtesy of Jenna Pierson

I purposely didn’t tell you the official name of this piece, or what it is composed of. Can you guess what those crinkly rosettes are made from? Bottle caps! This Golden Bottle Necklace is handmade from bottle caps, 23 karat gold, and silver. Isn’t that so cool! It is so beautiful in person and such a great use of an otherwise discarded material. Who knew bottle caps could be so chic?

One of my favorite things about the work that I have seen from Pratt’s jewelry design students over the past few weeks is that it truly reflects the students’ creativity and tenacity. Patricia Madeja, a Professor and the Fine Arts Jewelry Coordinator at Pratt Institute (who is an incredible studio jeweler as well) encourages these qualities in the students, which I really appreciate. There is plenty of time for these students to create commercial jewelry in their future jobs. For now they get to have artistic freedom. What’s better than that?

Which is your favorite of the bunch? I’m not sure I can really pick a favorite — I made sure to show you all the ones I adored! If you want to see these in person, the Pratt Senior Show runs through Thursday May 8th here in NYC and is open to the public. Go check out these and all the other fabulous pieces I didn’t have room to cover here!

P.S. Although I mention Pratt a million times in this blog post, I was not paid or perked to write about this exhibition. I am simply a lover of gorgeous jewelry created by awesome designers!

 

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Pratt Institute’s 2013 Junior Jewelry Exhibition – Round 2

After spending the first half of my Monday at the sparkly and decadent Sotheby’s and Christie’s Magnificent Jewels auction viewings, I made my way to Brooklyn for the opening night reception of the Pratt Institute Junior Jewelry Exhibition. This was round two for the students who are competing for The Tiffany & Co. Foundation Jewelry Design Scholarship, which provides one winning student with $25,000 of financial assistance in their senior year. A very exciting and prestigious prize!

If you don’t know Pratt, it is a private art college in the Fort Greene section of Brooklyn, NY. It also happens to be the college my Dad graduated from many years ago, so it has an inherent fondness for me! Take the G train into Brooklyn, and when you exit the subway car the platform greets you with a work of art:

clinton washington

At the auctions earlier in the day there were lush bouquets of cherry blossoms and tulips, brought in just for the events. Here at Pratt, the trees were also in full bloom:

tree blossoms

The jewelry exhibition took place at Steuben Hall. You can’t miss it:

steuben!

The room was packed to the gills with college students checking out the work and noshing on the free food. The students showcasing their work were at each table to discuss their pieces. An especially thrifty student brought in some daffodils and gave one to each of the presenters, so we could all tell who the artists were. Very helpful!

There were similar subjects in each student’s presentations, since the jewelry and art pieces were culled from assignments given throughout the school year, as well as from when they were sophmores. Student Odette Channell presented this lovely trio of silver flatware:

Odette's silverware

I absolutely love how post-apocolyptic they look. And the fact that the outside has a smooth satin finish while the inside is more textured gives them incredible depth. Odette also showcased this trio of silver rings that were given a patina treatment to achieve the yellow and orange hues:

Odette's rings

The reference to flames (and perhaps branches) really comes across, and although each ring would be cool on it’s own, I love the story they tell when shown together.

Two tables away was student Eden Daniell, who captured my heart with this root bracelet:

Eden's root bracelet

This piece is so evocative of ginger root, one of my absolute favorite things to eat. This bracelet was cast in bronze, and the detail is just incredible. Almost good enough to eat! She also had a white resin necklace up on the wall:

Eden's white necklace

Couldn’t you imagine this necklace on the slim neck of a fashion model on the runway? The resin gives a claymation effect, and the texture could be translated as feathers or even the curves of a pinecone. The brass points that hit the indent of your clavicle round out the horned-animal feel of this piece.

In the soft afternoon light by the window, student Lauren Pineda had prime real estate to show off her stunning copper and enamel winged piece:

Lauren upright

I loved everything about this. The femininity of the draped chains, the spritely fairy wing, the shoulder piece that has the strength of armor. She also placed a pin on the front and back of the piece, so you can pin it to your clothes for an even sturdier fit. This photo doesn’t show it well, but the top of the shoulder has colorful enamel work. I could imagine someone wearing this with a white tank top and jeans, or an edgy business suit in a creative workplace, or even nothing at all for a strong and sexy effect!

As you may have noticed by now the jewelry shown at this exhibition, by the young and bright designers of tomorrow, was completely different from the million dollar luxury pieces I viewed earlier in the day at the auctions. I purposely made a point to visit all three in the same day so I could really feel the contrast. These designers are passionate about drawing their inspiration from the organic world around them — there was a plethora of jewelry that referenced sticks, stones, bones, teeth, bodies, fur, animals, and bugs. Each student translated that in their own way. Look out world, there is some untraditional and amazing jewelry coming your way with the next generation of designers!

In a somewhat softer translation of the botanical world around us, student Young-Sun Song created this resin, acrylic, and brass necklace with embedded flowers:

Young-Sun necklace

You can see the delicate detail of the flowers:

Young-Sun close up

I love how she varied the size of the acrylic pieces, and how the brass has a satiny gold look. Wearing this would attract plenty of people to approach you to see the fine detail of the flowers. I think it would look especially pretty with a strapless floral summer dress!

And last, but most certainly not least, was student Shuoyuan Bai‘s winged ring:

Shuoyuan winged ring

In silver with a synthetic alexandrite in the center, this ring has a cool, tattooed vibe. But put the ring on your finger and you will find out the real magic of this ring. Shuoyuan put a mechanism in this ring attached to a second band — press the bottom of the ring, and the wings flap on your finger. I wish I had video to show you of it. The effect is awesome! So clever and fun.

Which are your favorite pieces? As you can tell, I am in love with the root bracelet and shoulder wing piece, but they really are all amazing. Yesterday was the final judging and announcement of the scholarship winner, who was Lauren Curry. Congrats Lauren! In addition to the scholarship from Tiffany & Co. there were three more prizes for students from various jewelry designers and jewelry supply stores. First place was a tie between Lauren Curry and Odette Channell for $1,500 from designer Kara Ross, second place went to Shuoyuan Bai from jewelry supplier Myron Toback, and third place went to Eden Daniell. Congrats to everyone!

P.S. Although I mention Pratt a million times in this blog post, I was not paid or perked to write about this exhibition. I am simply a lover of gorgeous jewelry created by awesome designers!

All photos were taken by me, but feature the work of incredible artists!

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