Colored Stones / Designers / Fashion / Gold / Industry

Jacqueline Pinto’s La Vie en Rose Collection Is a Storytelling Tour de Force


Growing up in Miami, Jacqueline Pinto (pictured) was accustomed to listening to her grandmother recount the stories behind the jewelry she’d smuggled into the U.S. after fleeing communist Cuba in 1960.

“I was always drawn to fine jewelry because it could hold these stories,” Pinto tells JCK.

Jacqueline Pinto

When Pinto was a college student, she majored in biology, “but I always had this artistic side to me,” she says. “Coming from a Cuban heritage, everybody had to study either law or medicine. I ended up getting my degree in psychology, got married, and had my children. I would come home from work and wanted to be creative. Thirteen years ago I started making costume jewelry. I wanted to make it a business because the more I could sell, the more I could create.”

After having her third child, Pinto realized that if she was going to juggle her family obligations, a day job, and a business in jewelry, the side hustle “needed to really count.” That’s when she made the switch to fine jewelry.

Jacqueline Pinto aqua sapphire vine earrings
Vine earrings in 14k white gold with 12.32 cts. t.w. aquamarines, 0.47 ct. t.w. Ceylon sapphires, and 0.63 ct. t.w. diamonds, $11,500

In 2012, Pinto took some sketches of pieces she wanted to have made to a local jeweler, and he offered to help teach her the craft of jewelry-making.

Jacqueline Pinto Gaudi ring
Large Gaudi ring in 14k yellow gold with green amethyst and diamonds, $3,300

“He told me to design my first piece, and to make something simple,” Pinto says. “I got four circles and put them together, and we made a 14k gold clover, which is now my logo. I ended up selling the necklace on the first day it was made, at a fundraising event. I knew I wanted to design, but also to see other women wearing my jewelry because it told their stories.”

In December, Pinto introduced La Vie en Rose, arguably her most personal collection to date. It’s an homage to her maternal grandmother, Rosa.

“I wanted to tell her story and the suffering she went through,” Pinto explains. “That’s why we begin with the tears. She had to sacrifice a lot for her family. The whole point of the collection is that you have to see the world through rose-colored glasses because of the hard things you have to do, and through grace those tears will become flowers.”

Comprising 13 pieces (with two more on the way), the collection is made in 18k yellow and rose gold, with each piece representing as aspect of her grandmother’s journey from Cuba to Miami.

Jacqueline Pinto Puddle ring
Puddle ring in 18k rose gold with 17.7 ct. kunzite, 0.3 ct. t.w. diamonds, and pink opal flowers, $9,000

Take the Puddle ring, which features a 17.7 ct. kunzite framed by carved pink opal flowers.

“It’s about all the tears my grandmother cried,” Pinto says. “She never showed us her pain, she kept it in. That generation, you felt things, but you never showed them.

“Once she was much older and moved in with my parents, I was reading these cards that she wrote to her father and never got to send to him, and saw how much pain she’d endured. That ring represents the wealth of emotion that was never displayed, at least not to me. I wanted to collect all those tears and put them in a ring.”

The flowers on the edge of the ring represent the transformational power of grace, Pinto says.

Tear Puddle earrings
Tear Puddle earrings in 18k rose gold with 6.58 cts. t.w. tourmaline, 8.69 cts. t.w. natural unheated faceted and unfaceted sapphires, 0.4 ct. t.w. pink tourmaline, and 0.9 ct. t.w. diamonds, $9,000

With tear-shape tourmalines at their centers, the Tear Puddle earrings continue the story by capturing “that moment when the tear is falling,” she says.

Surrounded by raw and faceted sapphires in tones of pink and purple and a scattering of diamonds, the button earrings pair well with the collection’s Cameo With Three Flowers necklace, which marks “a turning point where the tears turn into flowers,” says Pinto.

Jacqueline Pinto cameo necklace
Cameo With Three Flowers necklace in 18k yellow gold with cameo, 0.40 ct. t.w. tourmaline, and pink opal flowers, $6,500

Now a full-time designer with her own custom jewelry atelier in Miami’s Pinecrest neighborhood, Pinto still has a lot of juggling to do. “I have six children—the oldest is 17, and the youngest is 3,” she says.

“There is a passion inside of me to make something special,” she adds. “Jewelry is how I’m able to tell my story to the world, and it’s how I can help tell other people’s stories. We always have to remember how important it is to invest in quality goods—because we want to leave these stories for future generations.”

Top: Large Tear earrings in 18k yellow gold with pink opal cabochons and sapphires, $5,000

Follow JCK on Instagram: @jckmagazine
Follow JCK on Twitter: @jckmagazine
Follow JCK on Facebook: @jckmagazine

By: Victoria Gomelsky

Log Out

Are you sure you want to log out?

CancelLog out