Lyndsay Caleo, the name behind the 2-year-old Caleo Fine Jewelry, has talent and interests to spare. A passion for and hobby in sculpting led her to start making smaller-scale versions of designs in 18k yellow, rose, and white gold and sterling silver, while a master’s degree in goldsmithing from the Rhode Island School of Design gives her the technical know-how to bring pieces to life. Meanwhile, an outlet for still another pursuit—architecture and interior design—exists in Brooklyn Home Co., a real estate development, contracting, and design consulting business.
The winner of the World Gold Council’s emerging talent award in 2009 and 2010, Caleo says she designs for comfort, with confident women in mind, and works with a variety of colored stones, including labradorite, moonstone, pink opal, and more, most with diamond accents. “My work begins with thinking about the structure of a piece and how it wears and makes the wearer feel,” she explains.
Lyndsay Caleo of Caleo Designs
JCK: Describe your signature style.
Lyndsay Caleo: Clean lines and simple structures with a refined sense of color; I strive to make work that is pure and uncomplicated. I am most inspired by primitive art, minimalist Scandinavian design, and the perfect, organic forms found in nature. I also take design cues from my experience as a sculptor and the architectural design work I do. I am constantly thinking about how a piece of sculpture can make sense worn on one’s body.
JCK: Tell me about your design process.
LC: I have a bench at my house where I work on all the first models and drafts, and I always have a sketchbook with me. I need to physically work an idea with my hands in order to understand and develop it fully; I believe that the front, side, and back of a piece should be just as considered as the front. I then work with workshops in Brooklyn and New York City to bring my designs to fruition.
JCK: Do you make all your own findings and components such as chain and clasps?
LC: We make all of our own clasps as well as many of our chains. I think a lot about creating systems within my work and creating new chains is like developing a delicate, intimate little puzzle.
JCK: What is your jewelry training?
LC: I received my master’s degree in goldsmithing from the Rhode Island School of Design. I also have work experience as a jeweler, creating one-of-a-kind, hand-carved pieces for private clients, galleries, and museums.
JCK: Is your jewelry cast or fabricated?
LC: Depending on the design, my jewelry is both cast and fabricated. The lost wax casting process remains one of my most favorite ways to work.
JCK: How many accounts do you currently have?
LC: We have 17 U.S. accounts and three international.
JCK: What jewelry shows do you exhibit in?
LC: We just debuted in our first jewelry show at Couture in Las Vegas. We were overwhelmed with the amazing support and response and are really excited for what is ahead!
JCK: What is your starting retail price for each metal you work in?
LC: Our starting retail price in silver is $150 and is $425 in 18 karat gold.