Like many people, Katia Rudnick felt like life was passing by too quickly as she traveled from her birthplace in Soviet Russia to the United States, eventually settling into a quiet life as a wife, mother, and employee in the health and beauty industry.
That last job at a medical spa in southern Florida, and then starting a serious yoga practice became the turning point, Rudnick says. She felt restless and without a mission, focusing only on the exterior rather than her interior life.
It was at a yoga class during a downward facing dog where Rudnick first saw how jewelry might change the way she was living. A fellow yoga student was wearing a bracelet that entranced Rudnick, a shock in an of itself. Prior to this, she says she wasn’t much into jewelry, but that piece intrigued her. Rudnick asked the woman where it came from and the brand, but Rudnick failed to track it down online or in any store.
“That is when the idea downloaded into my head: I would make it myself,” Rudnick says. “I looked up jewelry classes in my area, and it turned out there was a local art school five or 10 minutes from my house. I walked in for the first time, and I knew this was it.”
That “it” feeling took her back to her childhood, a time when her creativity ran rampant. Rudnick says she always worked well with her hands, making everything from artwork to woodworks to crocheted pieces. She had forgotten in the rush and push of everyday life how much art and design truly meant to her—and jewelry was the way back.
“A lot of what I live by is in the messages that are on my jewelry. I believe that you do create your own reality. It’s important because you can only receive what you are projecting. It’s impossible to be unhappy and expect happy things to come. It doesn’t work that way,” Rudnick says.
Katia Designs is about empowerment, she says. That is one reason why Rudnick says her business made it through the coronavirus pandemic and why she believes the jewelry industry is moving into a powerful 2022. Jewelry isn’t just an accessory, she says. It’s something that can change your day and help you to live a better overall life.
Rudnick says she styles her line of handmade jewelry after that original bracelet she saw, creating a bohemian aesthetic. Each piece, whether it is a bracelet, chocker, or pendant, comes with an “empowerment reminder,” Rudnick says, reminding the wearer that they are strong, fearless, and able to achieve what they desire.
“It’s really about getting yourself into a better mind space,” Rudnick says.
That mindset is what helped her innovate within her own work as well. Katia Designs has a patent for a double-sided magnetic clasp that allows people to wear their necklaces in a variety of ways.
That’s also how she lives her daily life now as a jewelry designer. Rudnick says she gets up, works out, and then meditates. Her goal is to set herself up for a positive day where even if something blows up, she can move through it. Then, she goes into her studio and creates with the vision of how her work can improve someone else’s day.
“We all have the ability to achieve what we set our mind to, but sometimes we forget that,” Rudnick says. “My line of jewelry helps people remember how powerful and worth it they really are. This year, make it happen, but take the steps that will help you get there.”
Top: Growing up in Soviet Russia, Katia Rudnick says her first life’s passion was art and design. It was only after a long period of doing other jobs and feeling dissatisfied that she found her way back to making things, including her own jewelry (all photos courtesy of Katia Rudnick).Follow JCK on Instagram: @jckmagazine
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