Jewelry is about storytelling. Think of the special pieces of jewelry you own and chances are there’s a personal story behind each and every one: the ring your grandmother left you; the pearls your husband gave you on your first anniversary; or the gold charm you bought to commemorate your trip to Paris.
Jewelry designers and retailers have long known the significance and sentimentality of personalized lockets and charms, and pieces with monograms and birthstones. Today, more and more designers are pushing the boundaries of customization and personalization to help customers participate in the making of their own heirlooms. Let’s take a look.
Monica Rich Kosann
Monica Rich Kosann is the undisputed queen of the modern-day locket. An accomplished portrait photographer, Kosann began her jewelry business by scouring antique shops and flea markets for vintage lockets, cigarette cases and powder compacts – anything that could hold a photograph. As demand for these collectibles grew, she developed her own line of locket-based jewelry and home accessories.
Kosann’s mission is to integrate her clients’ most cherished memories and possessions into their daily lives and to tell their personal stories in original customized ways. By doing so she creates “new heirlooms” her customers are proud to pass on to their daughters.
This successful brand was founded in 2013 on a simple premise: Instead of hiding the traditional photo inside a locket, London Loquet customers can choose from a wide selection of charms that float behind a clear crystal casing. In other words, they can customize their own lockets with a unique combination of meaningful charms.
Designers Sheherazade Goldsmith and Laura Bailey told National Jeweler: “By allowing people to create they become emotionally connected with a piece, imbuing meaning and sentiment into something that is truly their own.”
Fortune & Frame
New York designer Gretel Going launched an entire jewelry line around a fortune cookie fortune. Looking for a place to save a particular fortune she was fond of, she designed a way to wear it tucked inside a gold-tone locket.
Today, Fortune & Frame allows customers to send in their fortunes to make their own personalized lockets. Demand has been so high that Going is going to the next level: engraveable fortune cookie pendants with, you guessed it, the customer’s own secret message.
Sources: NationalJeweler.com; MonicaRichKosann.com; LondonLoquet.com