Brooklyn, New York
Yasuko Azuma’s collection focuses on earthly delights such as the changing of the seasons. Each of her creations is hand-carved and hand-finished. She describes her “diamond dust” texture as “trying to capture the moment on an icy cold day in winter when the motion in the air sparkles when it freezes.” Yasuko replicates this feeling with light hammering which creates a subtle glimmer through the matte finish.
TAP by Todd Pownell
The jewelry designs behind TAP by Todd Pownell are the pique of craftsmanship and creativity—a unified result of the talents and experiences of Todd Pownell, Debra Rosen and their small team working out of Cleveland, Ohio. TAP’s root aesthetic is a romantic, sophisticated celebration of natural elements. The routinely elegant designs are enhanced by the prioritization of moral practices. As responsible jewelers, they exercise social and environmental responsibility by exclusively using ethically-mined stones and metals, maintaining a healthy work environment and managing their studio operations with green practices.
TAP evolved from the varied combined experiences of its founders, Todd and Debra. Todd is a technically trained goldsmith and graduate gemologist with fine jewelry historical knowledge. Debra’s experience is rooted in the European studio atelier practice and its jewelry fine art traditions. Together as a couple they merged their complementary perceptions to the romantic aesthetic that identifies the TAP jewelry design sophistication.
Todd’s signature design is the “upside-down” or reverse set diamond. This method reveals an alternative way the diamond can capture and reflect light at unexpected, oblique angles. The materiality of light and dark is a key concept in the designs, as Todd experiments with the relationship between the two. Another key element in the work is the rugged versus the refined; a juxtaposition that creates an inherent balance within a piece. Distinguished metals and gemstones are beautiful not only because of sheen or lustrous color but in their ultimate molecular structure, an evocation of mystery, and the fast-changing yet eternal conditions of the natural world.
Throughout her career, Monica Rossi’s designs have been informed by a deep love for displaying precious gems in the softest and most elegant of lights. Established in 1987, her brand, Anaconda, has evolved from a small accessories and clothing boutique into an extraordinary line of delicate, but powerful jewelry.
Monica specifically specializes in tracery, a technique that builds intricate designs within her work through the interlocking of thin gold or silver ribs. The motifs ultimately echo a marriage between Baroque and Gothic architecture and Victorian and Rococo masterpieces with looping floral and leaf carvings and dainty cut-outs. The delicacy in her pieces is balanced by a subtle harmony in the geometric inclusions.