JCK Asks…Coomi



On her circuitous path to 20 karat success

It’s not surprising to learn that Coomi Bhasin once worked as a textile designer. Her jewelry—all waves, coils, beadwork, and tactile shapes—begs to be touched. Her past career as a landscape designer explains such nature-inspired collections as Trinity (recalling a pebble-strewn riverbank) and ­Serenity (evoking desert sand and cactus flowers). Her time as an architect undoubtedly contributed to her sharp sense of space and proportion—her ­diamond and gemstone pieces are substantial, yet never overwhelm the wearer. Since 2002, Bhasin has been creating jewels for her Coomi brand—organic, hand-crafted designs in high-karat gold. Her metal of choice: 20k gold. “The purer the gold, the better the physical effect of the metal against the skin,” she says. Here’s more about the ­multifaceted artist.

Coomi’s sons Sahil and Akash

Age: I am reborn every morning.

Number of years in the biz: 10

Number of employees you oversee: 11

Family and pets: Precious

Describe your personal style: It’s what makes me happy. It’s not about the latest trend, or what everyone will think.

Coomi’s dog, Dhara Singh

First piece you ever designed: My mom’s ­necklace. Took most of my mom’s precious jewelry when I was 6 and broke them into pieces and stuck them on a piece of fabric. To me it was the most beautiful ­jeweled collage, but I doubt if my mom has forgiven me. Till today, when we disagree, it always comes up.

The single piece of jewelry you’re most proud of: The Antiquity boat pendant. It is truly a wearable piece of art.

Best piece of advice you ever received: Live every day like it’s your last. My father always said this to us.

First job ever: Designing screen prints for T-shirts

How did you get started designing jewelry? As far back as I can remember, I have always designed jewelry—since I was a child.

If you weren’t designing jewelry, what would you be doing? I would be a chef, as I love to cook.

Antiquity 20k bracelet with three-strip paisley cuff Antiquity 20k ring with carved ruby and diamonds

Jewelry you’re wearing right now: Always my engagement ring. Have not taken it off for over 40 years.

Antiquity boat pendant

Favorite gemstone: Spinel

Five items on your desk right now: Family picture, sketchbook, jar filled with precious and semiprecious stones, eye loupe, music

What did becoming a member of the CFDA mean to you? I still think I am dreaming and will wake up. It is the biggest honor anyone in fashion can receive.

Exercise regimen: Yoga every morning and ­breathing exercise after. A bath.

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What did you have for breakfast? Oatmeal with nuts, black sesame seeds, and fruit. No milk or sugar.

Guilty pleasure: Sleeping late

Drink (daytime/evening): Mango juice (day), red wine (night)

First website you check every day (not your own!): Kitco

Scent: Essence of night jasmine

How do you unwind? Cooking, gardening, or reading


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Mango juice…great with Indian food!

Favorite thing to do when you’re back in India: Eat, eat, and eat.

Superstitious? If your feet touch someone else’s feet, you shake hands. I find myself doing
this all day.

Book you’re reading: Steve Jobs biography

Book you’ve been meaning to get to: At least 100. I am a compulsive reader.

Preferred news source: The Wall Street Journal


Everett Collection
Ben Hur

Main means of transportation: Driving

Favorite movie: Ben Hur. It has great childhood memories.

Who would play you in your life story? Julia Roberts

Personal motto: Just live for now.

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+ JCK Asks…Melissa Joy Manning