I grew up being fascinated by jewelry, even though I was totally intimidated by the prospect of shopping for or let alone owning real jewels of my own one day.

Hidden Gems

When it comes to jewelry, I always felt like I had my nose pressed up against the glass at the proverbial Tiffany window. That is, until I met my husband and he opened my eyes to the wonders and mysteries of fine jewelry“Jeweler” is the latest book my husband has sent my way. Written by our family friend, Stellene Volandes, the totally down to earth editor in chief of Town and Country magazine, this lady knows her jewelry like a mother knows her baby.

rainbow warrior earrings

Lydia Courteille: Rainbow Warrior Earrings; sapphires, turquoise, amethyst and tsovarites.

The Insiders Insider

“Jeweler” is an intimate romp through the cloistered studios and private showrooms of the “masters and mavericks of modern [jewelry] design.”  On these pages, that read like a fun travel log, we get to journey into the creative process behind the exquisitely skilled hands and through the wildest imaginings of the world’s greatest living jewelers. By providing VIP access, with an eye that’s never jaded or all-knowing, “Jeweler” fascinates, but never intimidates, while revealing the language of jewelry.

Who knew that there were Mississippi River pearls worked into some of the finest jewelry on earth? Or that some of the best jewelry is the jewelry which you will probably never hear about. Why? Because it does not always come from the legendary retailers like Harry Winston, Tiffany’s or Cartier, but sometimes from an international cadre of artists who sell by invitation only twice a year from private suites of the most prestigious hotels on the globe. Well, you’ll find out here. This is the ultimate insiders book on how the rarest jewels are hunted down from the four corners of the earth by the most passionate artists and how they coax those silent precious stones into works of art that tell stories that endure for centuries to come.

Excerpt  from “Jeweler” by Stellene Vollandes

“The day comes but twice a year: the private viewing of Hemmerle pieces at the Hôtel Plaza Athénée, New York. The fourth-generation jeweler has only one store, near Munich, but to satisfy intensely devoted clients abroad a suite is booked, champagne is served and jewels are on display. I go each season. My heart drops when I see a piece missing from the vitrine. The absence means a woman had likely acquired a Hemmerle, and there is a special kind of envy reserved for that blessed breed. Hemmerle pieces are all one of a kind, all handmade, all immediately identifiable by the privileged circle of collectors and admirers who have come to appreciate that a rare diamond is more spectacular when it is set in brass iron copper or aluminum.”

black bangle

Hermele Harmony Bangle; ebony, diamonds, white gold, and blackened silver.