October brings sweater weather, fall foliage and most importantly tourmaline, one of my favorite gemstones. October’s birthstone claims my attention because of its vibrant hues, its variety and its powerful metaphysical properties.
The cascades of colorful leaves and warm breezes of Colorado got me in the mood to bask in the glow of my favorite season. The fall season is a transitional time of year, the changes in weather are obvious, but some changes are more subtle.
I want to get cozy and buckle down for the inevitable transformation to winter, and of course to enjoy the outdoors in all of its colorful glory.
It also reminds me to get started on large projects and tackle everything on my bucket list. One thing I know for sure, autumn comes and goes so fast, I want to savor every delicious moment.
“Most of us returned from our last vacation with a suitcase crammed with souvenirs of questionable quality; Nina Nguyen, on the other hand, brought back inspiration for her latest collection. Her travels to Bali were the seed of the Zen collection. It consists of colorful Druzy and turquoise stones cut into geometric shapes and set in sterling silver with a 22K gold overlay.”
– INSTORE Magazine
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.”
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.”
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.
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.”
Founded in 1941, Couch’s Jewelers has been located in downtown Anniston on the same street for over 72 years. Authenticity is the core of who they are and everything they do. At Couch’s Jewelers they embrace change, forward thinking and provide their customers with exceptional service that always exceeds their expectations. Couch’s Jewelers is not just a business they are a family.
Couch’s likes to stay current with all trends. At the moment they love all the colors available in colored stones and natural stones. They say “There are so many choices and they all pair so nicely with every outfit in your closet”.
We asked Couch’s Jewelers what they had to say about us and their response is, “Nina’s unique designs are so fashion forward, which appeals to every age group. Couch’s has always brought unique lines to the Anniston area, and Nina Nguyen may just be the most unique one yet”.
Join Couch’s Jewelers for a Nina Nguyen Designs launch event on Saturday, December 7, from 12pm – 7pm. Show your support for local Anniston non-profit organization, the Knox Concert Series , and see Nina’s beautiful collection of jewelry. Couch’s Jewelers, along with Nina Nguyen Designs has selected the The Nutcracker Ballet project – performance and educational outreach, as the beneficiary of a generous contribution from Couch’s Jewelers and Internationally renowned designer Nina Nguyen. The contribution will come from money raised through sales of a limited number of tickets, good for a chance to win a special piece of designer jewelry donated by Nina Nguyen, and available only on Saturday, December 7, 2013 from 12pm – 7pm at Couch’s Jewelers.
Call Couch’s at (256) 237-4628 and confirm your attendance to the event and to meet Nina!
Known for their artistic drive, owners Erik Carroll and Toni Gelman have brought to St. Petersburg culture, fashion and art in the form of contemporary fine jewelry. Inspired by New York Boutiques, Erik and Toni launched Baubles and Bubbles to bring fashion to the beautiful quaint downtown St. Pete Community.
Located on Beach Dr. you can browse high end jewelry in a comfortable laid back environment while the enjoying great company of the Baubles and Bubbles staff. At Baubles and Bubbles there are no rules when it comes to art and fashion! The fashionista owners encourage mixing and matching- stack and layer it all on to show off your personality. Here you can find anything to fit your mood from stackable rings, bracelets, and bold statement necklaces.
Adoring this year’s haute couture fashion runway trends – Oscar De La Renta’s use of Turquoise necklaces, the chain inspired collection of Karl’s Chanel, Celine mineral inspired accessories – it’s no wonder Baubles and Bubbles fell head over heels with Nina Nguyen. With our big, bold and versatile designs, St. Pete shoppers will have the ultimate mix and match day-to-night accessories.
We asked Baubles what they had to say about us and their response is as charming as their store;
“Nina’s line is a perfect fit for us as it has an urban chic feel that matches the style of our store. And, the store’s tranquil environment looks and feels as though it were designed with the line in mind. From our Buddha’s, which are found throughout, to the cork accessories, and more, it’s almost as though we designed our space for her before we found her and the line and so the meeting was pure kismet.”
With its vibrant hues couples with delicate whites and earthy greens, the Wisteria Collection manages to capture the romance and whimsy of its namesake’s flowers.
Nina first experienced Wisteria’s allure as a tourist, traveling through Tokyo by bicycle. Pedaling through a path completely surrounded with Wisteria, Nina was immediately fascinated with the graceful purple blossoms cascading into view. In her Spring 2014 collection, Nina celebrates Wisteria’s enduring beauty and charm.
Inspired by the flower, Nina crafted a timeless hybrid between a necklace and a bracelet – called a Necklette – that can be worn to match the wearer’s style and mood. Nina’s Necklette is incredibly versatile, whether worn as one long strand, double wrapped as a necklace, or wound around the wrist as a bracelet. The beads in the strands are made of variety of natural stones, including Amethyst, Moonstone, Green Agate, Blue Lapis and Chrysoprase.
Like Wisteria vine, Nina’s Necklettes can be wound and woven for a formal look or casually draped for a completely different feel. In addition to the wistful climbing ‘vine’ Necklettes, Nina’s spectacular Druzy Enhancers drape like wisteria’s vivid blossoms.
The druzy stones used in Nina’s Enhancers are formed naturally, over millions of years, as quartz crystals inside or on top of other stones. Complimenting the varied colors of Wisteria, the Enhancers come in 4 shades with fun names like Kyoto Blush and Tokyo at Midnight. The Enhancers are designed to be paired with a Necklette, whether worn as a necklace or a bracelet.
The result is a collection that is timeless in its appeal, with pieces that can be worn season after season, and evolve to remain always fashion-forward.