Nina Nguyen Featured in INDESIGN April/March 2014

INSTORE Cover

GOLDEN BEGINNINGS: “I used to help my mother trade gold in our hometown of Pleiku, Vietnam. Every Sunday, my mother would set up her little table, and workers from the nearby river who’d panned for gold would line up to sell my mother the gold they had found. My uncle used to make the beautiful sparkly gold dust into rings. My job was to bike to the market to deliver the gold. The gold rings were fastened on a chain for me to easily disguise under my clothes. This was to evade the communists’ eyes and ears on my parents. Being able to work with my family is a major part of my jewelry designing process today.”

FAVORITE STONES: “Anything that is unique, mineral, fossilized and can’t be found in a traditional jewelry store. Right now, I am obsessed with druzy and geodes.” 

                         Maharani Wisdom Cuff

THE GREATER GOOD: “I think all products should be made in a manner that benefits everyone involved. I would love for my jewelry to help bring this message: That people should always be concerned with where the things they purchase come from, who made them, where the materials came from, how long will it last, and what will become of it when its life is over.”

DESIGN INSPIRATION: “I first experienced wisteria’s allure as a tourist traveling through Tokyo by bicycle. Pedaling a bicycle path completely surrounded by wisteria, I was immediately fascinated by the graceful purple blossoms cascading into view. Wisteria’s enduring beauty and charm will be represented in my spring 2014 collection.”

Wisteria Melody Necklette

Wisteria Melody Necklette

CELEBRITY CONNECTION:  “In 2013, Miranda Lambert wore our Audrey earrings in black druzy to the season premiere of THE VOICE. That was such a pleasant surprise! Her stylist contacted my PR firm, so I guess my unique design is being mentioned in the celeb stylist circle.”

STYLE EVOLUTION: “I think my work has evolved as my personal preferences evolved. The styling of my design has changed from having a more modern and minimal look to having a somewhat classic, heirloom look while retaining the composition of a modern material”

STANDING ON PRINCIPLE: “In 2009, my line was represented by a New York showroom. I was dealing with the constant pressure from department stores and buyers to produce cheaper products. I don’t know how I did it, but I walked away from some very large purchase orders to focus on bettering my designs. The biggest achievement of my career was when I learned to stay focused on what I do, who I am, who my audience is and what my brand represents.


Q & A  / Getting Personal with Nina Nguyen

WHAT IS ON YOUR MIND WHEN YOU ARE NOT DESIGNING? “Children of Vietnam project. I plan to bring my experience to assist with raising more funds and bringing awareness to the organization.”
WHAT CAN’T YOU RESIST BUYING WHEN OUT SHOPPING? “Is there a hotline for Shoeaholics Anonymous?”
WHAT IS YOUR FAVORITE VACATION SPOT AND WHY? “I moved to Boulder, Colorado a year ago. There is so much to do and it is always nice to wake up in my own bed since I am on the road so much.”
IF YOU COULD HAVE ANY OTHER CAREER. WHAT WOULD IT BE? “Eco-handbag or eco-apparel designer. Have you tried to look for eco-clothes? I could see myself taking an interest in this industry.”

Inside Spread

by INDESIGN Magazine 

 

Diamonds with a Conscience: Todd Reed

For most people the value of diamonds lies in their clarity, weight, cut and color. Designer Todd Reed, however, finds greater beauty in raw, uncut diamonds and recycled metals. To Reed, “the most perfect cut is still an uncut.”

Todd Reed gold ring with raw diamond cubes

His natural inspirations, which are abundant given his Boulder, CO location, come through seamlessly in the strategically placed textures. He contrasts unfinished diamonds with those that are cut and polished in wonderfully balanced ways. And, despite the darker metals he often employs, there remains a lightness and elegance that are simultaneously cutting-edge and timeless.

In addition to providing all of us with extraordinary pieces, Todd Reed has also made it his mission to craft his products responsibly. Every stone that enters his studio is one that was mined in ethical conditions. Recycled metals are the other component of his artwork, making Reed’s breath-taking designs some of the most guilt-free accessories to own.

(1) TRDN840: gold, sterling silver, patina necklace with white brilliant cut diamonds and raw diamond cube
(2) TRDR679: white gold, white princess cut diamonds
(3) TRDN480: gold, gray fancy cut diamond, white brilliant cut diamonds, raw diamond cube
(4) TRDE720-PD: palladium with fancy cut diamonds, white brilliant cut diamonds, raw diamonds
(5) TRDR481-PD-SQ-17: palladium with black fancy cut diamond and white brilliant cut diamonds
 

To learn more about Todd Reed, his masterpieces, and his practice, visit his website.

 If you would like to learn more about the issues surrounding unethically mined diamonds, click here.

Nina Nguyen Move to Boulder, CO Almost Complete!

We would like to thank all our fans for your patience on our silence the last few weeks. As we have mentioned a few times, after 6 years in Naples, FL we have decided to move our business (and family!) from Southwest Florida to Boulder, Colorado! It has been a whirlwind couple of weeks, and while we still have a few things to finish up, we are just about done with the transition.

While we will miss the place where it all started, we are very excited to see what the change in scenery will bring, and how the new landscape might influence new pieces of jewelry!