Heirloom Quality, The Conference (Being Held This Week)

It’s no mystery why some scrap with relatives over Grandma’s diamond ring (hello $), but if you’ve ever wondered why others fuss about vintage clothes or other less-obvious heirlooms, then the answers you want will be available a conference taking place this week in New York. Heirloom: Style, Materials, And Sustainability, a conference organized by Initiatives in Art and Culture, New York, December 4-5, will consider “the link between sustainability and stewardship as embodied in the broad concept of ‘heirloom’,” and “what makes one generation’s creations valued by those that follow,” according to literature about the event. Additionally addressed are Fair Trade practices, eco-friendly principles, and “notions of provenance, sustainability, the secondary market, and new concepts of green luxury” for objects like jewelry “but also on the materials used to create them.”

Me&Ro ring

The conference is the 11th Annual New York Fashion and Design Conference organized by Initiatives in Art and Culture, and opens with an exhibition of works from fashion photographer Lillian Bassman at the Staley-Wise Gallery on the evening of December 3. Then on December 4, the speakers dig in; with more than 20 in total, they will need every minute of days allotted. From jewelry and watches, attendees will listen to Keith Spodek of retailer Birks & Mayors, Robin Renzi of Me&Ro, and Chris Del Gatto of CIRCA, speak to their expertise, in addition to eight others. Plus, Nanette Lepore and seven other fashion-world cognoscenti will discuss the collectability of couture, while five souls with green ambitions dish on sustainability.

One of the world’s largest natural pearls, several centuries old and measuring two inches high, from a private collection. Photo courtesy of the Gemmological Association of Great Britain.

Being held at the Graduate Center of The City University of New York, the fee to attend is $350 or $100 for full-time students with identification. Check out the group’s web site for more information about this conference or others, or click here to register online.

Patek Philippe Calatrava watch

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