Gina Love has always worn jewelry—her designer mother pierced her ears when she was a baby—and she has always been creating, learning how to knit when she was 6 years old. Love also is a photographer and designs fine leather handbags on the side.
But her day job? For years, the cofounder of Auvere didn’t focus on jewelry or working as a designer. She was a real estate attorney. It makes perfect sense when you find out that her mom is the creative one and her father is an engineer and businessman. In some ways, being an attorney was playing to her dad’s side of the equation.
“I struggled a bit because I am both creative and analytical. Law made sense to me at the time because I wanted a career that was both intellectual and pragmatic,” Love says. “I chose real estate law because, ultimately, a building is created or used as a result of that work.”
Another key part of Love’s identity is her heritage—she was born in Jamaica, where she learned to love jewelry and high-karat gold in particular. Her family moved to the United States when she was a child, but those early lessons about jewelry stayed with her, through law school and beyond.
“My dad went to college and graduate school in the U.S. and worked for an American company in Jamaica,” Love says. “One promotion after another led to a coveted management position in the U.S. He told himself and us that the move was for a few years and that we would eventually return to Jamaica. But he was promoted again and we stayed.”
Law was her day job—but jewelry was her hobby until it turned into more, Love says. Part of the reason for her transition from practicing law to full-time jewelry design came about when she got married and her spouse, Steven Feldman, saw her passion for the industry. Love says she was ready for the change and had the chops from her life experience and training—she was going to Parsons School of Design at night to learn the art of handbag design.
“Before I launched Auvere with my husband, I used to travel to places like Greece and Turkey to obtain high-karat gold pieces. When I met my husband, he encouraged me to expand into jewelry design using high-karat gold,” Love says.
Jamaica is home to many different cultures and communities, including an Indian community, Love says, which has influenced Jamaican culture, including giving Jamaicans an appreciation for high-karat gold. Her hoop earrings and gold chains in particular have gained fans across the globe.
“My vision is based on my love of minimalism, abstract art, sculpture, and architecture. My natural inclination is to make big pieces, but I have learned to love delicate jewelry as well,” Love says. “When we started Auvere in the fall of 2017, we focused on making pieces from investment-grade 22- and 24-karat gold. Since then, we’ve added gemstones to many of our high-karat gold pieces and plan to launch a silver collection sometime this year.”
The brand’s name helps tell that story, Love says. Auvere (pronounced oh-vair) derives from the Italian word avere, which means “to have, to own, to hold, to wear, and to receive.” The name also combines Au, the symbol for gold, with the Latin word vere, which means true.
Love says she is thrilled with the reception of her brand, gaining fast buzz in the industry and among clients. But, as they say, you can take the lawyer out the courtroom, but you cannot take away her love of law or real estate.
“I learned a tremendous amount as an attorney, from problem-solving to how to become highly disciplined, efficient, and focused. I eventually learned that I didn’t want to do it anymore,” Love says. “I no longer do any legal work, but I definitely surf [New York City real estate website] StreetEasy. My husband and I bought an apartment in New York in the middle of the pandemic, so looking at apartments was a fun thing to do during a tough time.”
Top: Designer and company cofounder Gina Love says some of Auvere’s best-known pieces are its Big Love Diamond hoops, which just the thing to express your devotion to all things gold (photos courtesy of Auvere).@jckmagazine
Follow JCK on Twitter: @jckmagazine
Follow JCK on Facebook: @jckmagazine