These Heirloom Jewellery Manufacturers Are Making Fashionable Household Keepsakes

You’ll be able to hear Meleana Estes and Noël Shaw getting into a room earlier than you see them. Not as a result of the lifelong buddies and Hawaiian natives converse at a very excessive octave or dwell in loud stilettos, however fairly as a result of their wrists are awash with conventional gold Hawaiian bracelets. Inscribed with household names, cultural designs, and nostalgic phrases, their bangles are a mixture of heirloom jewellery handed down from technology to technology, and bracelets bought for them by family members throughout pivotal moments of their lives. The jingle they make is melodic and distinct, and if you happen to spend sufficient time on the islands, you’ll begin to hear it all over the place.

“Noel and I grew up noticing the bracelets worn by the ladies in our households, and coveting sure ones belonging to our aunts, tūtūs (grandmothers), and moms,” says Estes. “I appeared ahead to my sixteenth birthday realizing that I might be gifted the bracelet my tūtū had made for my mother with my title on it after I was born.” The bangle is one among a number of that Estes hardly ever takes off, equally to Shaw, who has solely eliminated the classic piece as soon as belonging to her great-great-great grandmother a handful of instances since receiving it shortly after her school commencement. “It has turn into a little bit of a great luck attraction,” she says.

Originated by Hawaii’s final monarch, Queen Liliʻuokalani, the custom of crafting and handing down gold bangles is one Estes and Shaw are perpetuating with the launch of their model, HIE Heirlooms of Hawaai’i. The road is amongst a number of which have just lately emerged within the effective jewellery area, providing customizable fashionable heirlooms.

“I believe what individuals discover so fascinating about heirlooms is the historical past that comes together with them,” says Elana Zajdman, who based made-to-order jewellery model Estelle Galerie in 2022. “Whether or not the piece has been handed down in a household for generations or bought from a flea market, there’s an unimaginable thriller to them.” The potential for a bit to sooner or later maintain that very same attraction and mystique, she says, is drawing an increasing number of individuals in direction of memento items. “They’re timeless and can thus be an awesome funding to have endlessly.”

Forward, a more in-depth have a look at HIE, Estelle Galerie, and three different rising manufacturers whose work is imbued with particular which means.

“We had our youngsters the identical 12 months,” Shaw says of herself and Estes beginning their households, “and once they have been turning eight, we realized that neither of us had bought or got heirloom bracelets of their honor.” As the 2 started dreaming up designs, pulling references from bracelets worn by the ladies of their households, and researching potential artisans, they discovered the method daunting; few avenues led to the precise look they have been aiming for. “Historically, households tended to have one maker or one store that they at all times bought from,” Estes says, including that native jewelers usually had a signature font or design parts that they have been recognized for. “Most of the artisans who made my household’s bracelets have since handed, and it was exhausting to search out related types.” So, Estes and Shaw determined to design their very own as an alternative — a enterprise that finally advanced into HIE.

“Our assortment is comprised of fashion parts that have been handed onto us,” says Shaw, referencing the ten bracelets HIE has launched with. Amongst them are the Amelia Ana, which options an etched design and black enamel engraving; the diamond-bedecked Aloha Nui; and the HIE Signature Bangle, engraved with Queen Liliʻuokalani’s beloved pua kalaunu (the crown flower) and the nationwide flower of England, the Tudor rose. The customizable bracelets can be found in strong 14K, 18K or rose gold, and could be shopped on-line or at Ron Herman in Waikiki.

After a decade working as a jewellery and equipment editor at high vogue magazines, Elana Zajdman drew upon her expertise to launch Estelle Galerie. Specializing in a mixture of classic finds and bespoke items made in restricted portions, the model is called after Zajdman’s grandmother (a longtime jewellery collector) and produced in New York Metropolis by a small, family-owned bench jeweler.

“I am going to flea markets everywhere in the world, largely in Europe, the place I discover most of my classic treasures,” Zajdman says. “Nearly all of the items we design in-house are strong brass and plated in 18k gold, but when a shopper needs to do a strong gold or silver model of a bit we provide — or a wholly customized design — we are able to completely create one thing particular for them.” Estelle Galerie was just lately commissioned to create customized marriage ceremony bands for a bride and groom, which Zajdman is crafting alongside a group that features a hand-carved lapis ring and a mechanical pencil pendant in 18K gold. “It’s much less about having this really feel like a enterprise and extra about creating one thing as particular and distinctive for the one who’s carrying it,” Zajdman says of her method. “I see jewellery as a murals.”

Steel so polished you need to use it as a mirror; near-flawless diamonds lower to perfection; items with essentially the most very best quantity of heft — all three of these items are amongst hallmarks of Valery Brinda, coined after its founder and designed in collaboration with Kia Schwaninger. Veterans of the posh jewellery business who met whereas working at Harry Winston (Brinda as director of manufacturing improvement and Schwaninger as director of design) the 2 started collaborating on their very own designs in 2020, having left their full-time company positions to pursue private tasks and spend extra time at dwelling with their younger kids.

“Our Chapter XII Bracelet in 18K yellow gold and diamonds began all of it,” says Brinda of the gathering’s hero piece, which is modeled after the ID bracelets moms and their newborns are given to put on within the hospital. Marked by an oblong plaque and cascading mesh chain, the bracelet could be engraved with a reputation or customized message. Extra choices embrace the Argyle Assortment, impressed by the arches of the Brooklyn Bridge, and the Lyric Diamond Observe Bracelet, which could be personalized in order that diamonds are organized to replicate the notes of a tune. “Our eye is on in the present day as a lot because it’s on the long run,” Brinda says of the model’s method. “In order that 100 years from now our items will nonetheless look traditional and be as fascinating as they really feel now.”

The story behind Kinn’s inception shouldn’t be a contented one. In 2015 Jennie Yoon’s mother and father have been robbed of their household’s heirloom jewellery, together with all of her grandmother’s vintage items, when their dwelling was damaged into. Yoon, who began her profession in human assets and later helped construct Casetify, wished to recreate a few of what was stolen, and started exploring the Jewellery District in downtown L.A. Her seek for moderately priced effective jewellery with heirloom potential yielded little or no — and so Kinn was born.

Immediately, the model is thought for items such because the Solis Ribbed Ring I — a nod to an analogous pleated type Yoon’s mom wore whereas immigrating from South Korea to the U.S. — engravable lockets, and the Expensive Kaia Nameplate Necklace III, out there in Korean, Chinese language, and Japanese characters. “So lots of our items have been impressed by photos of my and my buddies’ grandparents or mother and father carrying traditional items of bijou,” Yoon says. “We’ve taken the aesthetic of the ‘previous’ and integrated fashionable parts by way of texture, stone cuts, and colours.” Moreover, Kinn works with shoppers to repurpose heirloom jewellery they already personal. “Customers these days would a lot fairly spend money on a bit that may final them a lifetime than buy a low-priced and low-quality piece that may flip colour, irritate their pores and skin, and/or break,” Yoon says, including that “repurposing heirloom jewellery is a extra inexpensive option to recreate a bit into one thing fashionable. And on the identical time, it’s a option to reclaim worth into the piece.”

With a design resume that features roles at Alexander McQueen, Lorraine Schwartz, and Marina Bulgari, Central Saint Martins and gemological Institute of America alum Sarah Ysabel Narici is now expressing her curiosity within the pressure between historical past and the long run with Dyne. “I care rather a lot about silhouettes, and I like clear traces that work devoid of any element,” she says of minimal maximalist aesthetic. “As soon as that’s achieved, I then add particulars, corresponding to stone setting or carvings.” That is all evident in Dyne’s extremely customizable LOVERGLYPH© rings. Each options a mixture of historic and up to date symbols which might be significant to the wearer, and both etched into the ring or usual with gems.

“It’s a real collaboration with the shopper,” Narici says of her one-of-a-kind items, that are priced on a case by case foundation. “The symbols are private to every shopper; they inform me tales about their lives, and my job is to interpret them into graphic types. No person’s two items can ever be the identical — we’re creating private time capsules.” Typically that includes Colombian emeralds, Paraiba tourmalines, spinels and garnets, the heirlooms, Narici says, replicate everlasting which means. Each treasured object ought to have that common magnificence, shared among the many generations,” she provides. “After which it wants that shiny futuristic ingredient, an thrilling glimpse of what’s but to come back.”