For me, Spring is a celebration of the rebirth of nature and I love watching all the trees and plants come to life and explode from the earth. It is the perfect time to break out the pastel jewel tones. I love the mottling colors and imperfections of the stones I am drawn to at this time of year.
The stones that I love to work with also have the properties and feel good factor that we all need as we move into this fresh new season. Opals bring love and peace; Chalcedony brings vitality and energy; Chrysoprase brings joy and abundance; Turquoise brings wisdom and balance & Coral is a beautiful organic gift from the ocean.
My early training and apprenticeship installed a love and respect for intricate design and workmanship, during my 20s I lived in London and began travelling the world and spending lots of time in museums soaking up as much history and culture as I could. During this time, I fell in love with the Ottoman Empire.
The Ottoman Empire was a 600-year state that controlled much of Southeastern Europe, Western Asia and Northern Africa between the 14th and 20th centuries, They were known for their achievements in art, science and medicine. Istanbul and other major cities throughout the empire were recognized as artistic hubs, especially during the reign of Suleiman the Magnificent. This produced beautiful and intricate architecture, the domed mosques are magnificent. They were also renowned for their jewelry making and carpet weaving.
When I finally went to Istanbul, I was struck by the beauty everywhere and inspired by their use of beautiful shapes in their architecture and incredible workmanship and structure.
I fell in love with Top Kapi Palace and it continues to inspire my work to this day.
I picked out some of my favorite pieces that were inspired by the Ottoman Empire.
18k Yellow Gold crownwork® pendant with pave diamond
18k Yellow Gold crownwork® domed disc pendant with pave sapphire center
18k Yellow Gold crownwork® pendant with pave orange sapphire and diamonds
18k Yellow Gold crownwork® egg earrings with pave tsavorite and tourmaline center stones
18k Yellow Gold crownwork® hand painted enamel earrings with pave diamond
18k Yellow Gold crownwork® red enamel earrings
18k Yellow Gold crownwork® rings with pave pink sapphire & color change garnet
18k Yellow Gold crownwork® multi sapphire one of a kind ring
Charm Bracelets really are the “choose your own adventure” of the jewelry world.
Charms date back to the prehistoric period when they were formed out of shells, clay and animal bones, then continued to develop into gems, rocks, metal and wood. Throughout all periods of history charms and talismans have been used as symbols of faith, luck, prosperity and to mark and celebrate achievements and occasions in life.
A beautiful link bracelet is a solid base for a charm bracelet, you want the bracelet to have some substance so it will support the charms as your collection grows and so it can still have some roll on your wrist. Crownwork® lends itself beautifully to large link bracelets as it keeps them nice and light on the wrist but weighty on the eye. Click here to see all of the fabulous bracelets that work perfectly with charms.
There are so many ways to start a collection of charms, you can choose those that have meaning to you (birthstones/anniversary stones), those that have a design that you fall in love with, those that are made with your favorite gemstones. We have pearl charms, tassel charms, coin charms, gold ball charms; the possibilities are endless. The most important thing to keep in mind is to balance the weight and style of the charms around your bracelet so they lie nicely around the wrist and feel comfortable.
Its impossible to pick favorites, click here to see our current collection of charms.
All of our charms are made with a hinged bale on the top so they are easy to interchange and play with (this also allows them to serve double duty as pendants on your favorite necklaces)
LOVE this all pearl charm bracelet we put together for a client a couple of years ago, so timeless and chic.
Working one on one with clients on their charm bracelet project is always so much fun, its like telling stories of events and travels throughout their lives through jewelry. Ray has been working with a client for a few years on her bracelet, every few months they add a new charm. The latest one is a green enamel “train track” he made to represent a train journey she went on through Ireland.
Repurposing old jewelry into charms is also a great way to breathe new life into pieces you no longer wear but have great sentimental value. Drop us a line if you have a fun project for us to work on together or would like to build out your perfect charm bracelet. We can book an appointment with Ray in the studio or over Zoom.
“Jewelry is something that takes a long time to get right. Integrating technical skills into one’s own sense of style and design occurs over time. Jewelry isn’t seasonal, it’s evolutionary.”— Ray Griffiths
This error message is only visible to WordPress admins
There has been a problem with your Instagram Feed.
In the rarified realm of design-driven, luxury jewelry, Australian-born; New York City-based designer/goldsmith Ray Griffiths is legendary for visionary design, superb quality gem materials and intrepid, master artisanship. At the end of the 20th century, Griffiths drew a winning number in the U.S. Green Card lottery made his new home in New York. While 2021 marks the 20th anniversary of the founding of Ray Griffiths Fine Jewelry, having trademarked the distinctive, chic and airy 18-karat gold jewelry genre of Crownwork® in 2014, Griffiths has long distinguished himself from other designers.
Having apprenticed in a high-end jewelry restoration house in his native Australia, Griffiths became fluent in the language of gold and precious metals as a teenager. “The more you learn about what can be done with gold to shape and form it, the easier it is to use your imagination to design with it and create beautiful jewels,” he reflects. His masterful grasp of gold’s unique characteristics and deep understanding of its myriad technical and artistic potentials distinguish Griffiths from mere jewelry designers, and many jewelers, for that matter.
Griffiths designs and fabricates everything from earrings to pendant necklaces, oversized yet lightweight link bracelets, wedding ring sets and high jewelry glittering with important diamonds or colored gemstones.
Situated in a sunlit studio on a lovely stretch of New York’s Fifth Avenue, Griffiths dreams up collections that are influenced by adornments from Regency and Edwardian eras as well as Moorish aesthetics and masterpieces from Roman and Greek antiquity. It’s also worth noting that Griffiths loves to create bespoke engagement and wedding jewelry, in addition to offering classic engagement rings and wedding bands.
Owing to his unparalleled restoration skills, Griffiths is renowned as a “jewelry whisperer” who takes weathered jewelry and restores it to its youthful structure, sensuality and shine.
The atelier of Ray Griffiths is a sunlit space that sits high above New York’s Fifth Avenue. Here, gold is worked and made into precious pieces stamped with the mark of Ray Griffiths Fine Jewelry. Likewise, this is also where Griffiths lovingly restores vintage and antique jewels. To some of his clients, Griffiths is a “jewelry whisperer” who takes weathered or damaged jewelry and restores it to its original shape, sensuality, sparkle and shine. “I like the time-traveling element of doing fine jewelry restoration,” Griffiths says. “It’s fun to imagine who these pieces may have belonged to previously, and where they might have traveled,” he says. “If only some of those jewels could talk to us!”
As gold has often been described by poets and alchemists as sunlight made solid, it is perfectly fitting that the picture-windowed space where Griffiths creates and restores golden jewels is bathed in golden light. Housing two jewelry benches, (one for Griffiths and one for the jeweler who assists him), the studio also contains a safe, the contents of which rival Aladdin’s Cave in terms of treasure. In addition to packets of diamonds, sapphires and other colored gemstones, there are of course 18-karat gold Crownwork® jewels, along with strands of pearls, turquoise and myriad of other gems. “It’s a privilege to be able to work with gemstones and make gold jewelry for people who appreciate the beauty of what I produce,” Griffiths says. “Gold came to our planet from meteorites that crash landed here one hundred million years ago, and gemstones are also precious pieces of eternity. Creating jewelry more than a career, it’s also an emotional process. I love seeing my clients light up when they wear my designs.”