Blogs: On Your Market / Colored Stones / Designers

Britt’s Pick: Brenda Smith’s Whimsy Necklace


Las Vegas is on the horizon, and I’m starting to get really excited about my visits on the show floor. There’s a whole list of favorites I plan to flock to, to check out their new creations, and there’s a lot of new-to-me (and maybe you?) brands in store, too.

One of the favorites is Brenda Smith. The Atlanta-based designer will leave your mouth agape with her offerings on display, and she has plenty to share about them. A visit with Brenda—abundant with creativity and expertise—is an exciting (and educational) experience. I can’t wait to see what she’s showing this year.

One piece I’m longing to try on is this lavender Laguna agate necklace, like a winged fairy floating on 18k gold. It’s pure art, and its purple gem fixture is spellbinding.

“I commissioned Glenn Lehrer to do the body carving,” Brenda tells JCK. “He sent photos of several stone options. Ultimately I decided on this—you can see the mapping marks to take the most advantage of striations and markings in the mineral, which is lavender Laguna agate from Mexico.

“Since I enjoy working with pearls,” she continues, “I have a nice selection from which to choose, and this natural metallic-colored pearl was the perfect solution to coordinate with the rich 18k yellow gold setting and the lavender agate. VVS diamonds encompass the image, enhancing the figure and protecting the agate. The reverse side features a flower filigree motif in gold, accented with diamonds, to support and protect the overall piece.

“Finally, the whimsical figure was given life by the application of the red tourmaline heart set in platinum and attached to the filigree on the reverse side,” Brenda says. “The inspiration came from the final laguna agate carving that just wanted to be a fairy, a whimsical figure.”

Whimsy was an entry in the American Gemstone Trade Association’s (AGTA) 2022 Spectrum Awards (Brenda’s designs won and placed second in two other categories). I hope to get my hands on this in Vegas!

Top: Special Stones collection pendant in 18k yellow gold with 61.59 ct. lavender Laguna agate, freshwater cultured pearl, 0.3 ct. tourmaline heart cabochon, and 1.5 cts. t.w. diamonds, $39,660; Brenda Smith

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By: Brittany Siminitz

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