When Manya Tessler and Roumen Vragov debuted Manya & Roumen in 2009, accolades quickly accumulated. But after five years of winning honors, including the 2009 Mort Abelson New Designer of the Year award and first prize in the 2012 Palm Beach Fine Craft Show, they are trading in wholesale accounts for a retail store in Cold Spring, N.Y.
Exhausted from a grueling show schedule and wanting to put down some roots with their fur kids—two dogs and a cat—the pair recently opened the Open Concept Gallery at 125 Main St. (The duo had a soft launch in July, and a grand-opening affair in September.) They first visited Cold Spring 10 years ago, but never forgot its charm and historical roots. “Cannons were made nearby during the Civil War,” explains Vragov, who oversees the business side of the shop.
To date, they carry the works of eight jewelry artists including Tessler’s animal-inspired handiworks in silver and karat gold, as well as accessories like scarves and hats. The couple have ceased all wholesale operations in order to dedicate themselves full time to the 600-square-foot store, which is located about 90 minutes north of New York City along the Hudson River. In line with their love of animals, they donate 5 percent of sales from their own line to local animal charities.