New York City-based fine jewelry brand and retailer Reinstein Ross has announced that it’s brought on veteran jewelry designer Ileana Makri as its new creative director.
Makri, who is Greek and is based in Athens, is well-known in the jewelry world for her elegantly eccentric, sophisticated designs that are often rooted in Greek history, design, and mythology. The designer debuted her namesake fine jewelry collection in 1996.
Makri’s first collection for Reinstein Ross, Greek Eye, debuted yesterday online and in the company’s two brick-and-mortar locations in Manhattan. The first of two collections, Greek Eye includes bracelets, rings, necklaces, and earrings fabricated in 18k matte yellow gold and bearing protective eye symbols carved from opaque gems hematite, lapis lazuli, turquoise, and malachite. Prices for styles range from $995 to $4,900.
Next up will be the Makri-designed Intaglio & Cameo Collection—a series of stunning pieces featuring intaglios and cameos set in 18k yellow gold.
The collection features depictions of Greek gods, goddesses, and heroines including Hera, Athena, Aphrodite, Demeter, Hestia, Nike, Ariadne, Eos, Themis, Artemis, the three Graces, and Eros. Mighty and mythical, the female Titan and Olympian deities have been personally meaningful to Makri for decades, she says.
The talismanic themes of both collections fall neatly in step with the current fervor for amulet-style jewels that offer protection (symbolic or literal, depending on your worldview), and jewels that celebrate women’s empowerment and autonomy.
Makri tells JCK, “I’m honored to be working with Reinstein Ross, an exceptional name with an identifiable aesthetic and rich heritage within the jewelry industry.”
She adds that she plans to maintain the brand’s “distinctive style” while “refreshing the overall aesthetic by incorporating new settings and stones of more modern sensibility. It’s exciting to challenge myself creatively, and I’m thrilled at the opportunity to drive the brand to its next stage.”
Top photo: Ileana Makri (all photos courtesy of Reinstein Ross)
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