The Prize Winner
Gregoré Morin of Gregoré Joailliers has won so many Spectrum Awards from the American Gem Trade Association that it’s hard to keep track of them all. There were two Best of Show wins, four first-place accolades, and a smattering of second- and third-place nods—all before the most recent 2013 competition, where he earned four awards.
After this year’s competition ended, the Santa Barbara, Calif.–based artist found a photo of his Ume earrings—18k gold, diamond, and pink opal Japanese plum blossoms—on the AGTA fan page on Facebook, but didn’t realize they had taken First Place in the Business/Day Wear category. When the group called him to deliver the good news, the real shock occurred: Morin learned he’d won three more Spectrum Awards. (“I didn’t expect to win anything,” he concedes.)
Morin’s third-place–winning Lady Leaf earrings in 18k white gold with 53 cts. t.w. jade leaf drops, 5.5 cts. t.w. opal, 0.45 ct. t.w. black diamond–accented ladybugs, and 0.36 ct. t.w. colorless diamonds; $19,000
In fact, his jewels had taken all three spots in Business/Day Wear. His fourth win came in the Objects of Art category: A Japanese Kokeshi sculpture earned him first-place honors there.
As soon as his treasures returned from the AGTA, he and wife Jennifer Rabe Morin—also a jewelry designer—delivered the Ume earrings to a private buyer in Pasadena, Calif.; a pair of ladybug-motif earrings and an opal ring (both in gold) and the sculpture have not yet been sold.
Another one-of-a-kind piece is in the works for the American Jewelry Design Council’s annual project. Morin can’t reveal the theme just yet, but he will say that the design “has a long strip of rock crystal that’s an inch wide…with diamond pavé and opal-body water bugs, and where their feet touch the surface, there will be ripples in the rock quartz.”
Morin’s signature style—whimsical, one-off pieces with gemstones he cuts himself—is as complex as the creations themselves, so you won’t find him at any trade show. But do ring him when collectors come calling!
Floating Flower ring in 18k gold has 0.05 ct. t.w. diamonds; $2,000; Gumuchian, NYC; 212-593-9888; gumuchian.com
Additions to the Gumuchian line this spring feature six Floating Flower rings, some with daisy and lotus motifs. “They fit between two fingers and the flowers fan out over two fingers, but it’s just one band,” says designer Patricia Gumuchian of the New York City–based firm. Geared toward entry-level shoppers, the 18k white, yellow, or rose gold pieces start at $2,000 retail. The styles will join the firm’s existing G Boutique collection, which debuted at the start of the economic downturn. “No one wants to flaunt big jewelry in difficult times,” she adds.