Mimi So Supports AAPI Heritage Month by Painting Her Signature Ring Red


The color red symbolizes strength and elegance, says jewelry designer Mimi So, and when her collaborator Daniel Martin suggested adding a blaze of red to So’s signature paintbrush ring to raise funds during Asian American Pacific Islander Heritage Month, she knew it was the right choice.

“I totally stripped it bare,” So says of the Parsons brush ring, and made it new and different with the bold color. Martin, a noted makeup artist, selected the shade of red from a lipstick he once used on classical pianist Chloe Flower.

So says this ring became a perfect jewelry collab she is proud to represent. She, Martin, and Flower will donate 15% of the proceeds from sales of the ring—released in May, which is AAPI Heritage Month—to Apex for Youth, a nonprofit organization that empowers unprivileged Asian and immigrant youth in New York City.

Chloe Mimi Daniel
Mimi So (left), Daniel Martin, and Chloe Flower worked together to create a fundraising ring in honor of Asian American Pacific Islander Heritage Month.

The collaboration was exciting because all three partners are at their creative peak, So says. Her jewelry clients include Oscar-winning actor Michelle Yeoh and music superstar Beyoncé. She met Martin when they worked on Yeoh’s look for the 2022 Met Gala. Flower rose to fame when she performed with rapper Cardi B at the Grammys.

“This originated from a very genuine place of coming together, joining forces, and seeking a way to support APPI Heritage Month,” So says.

Details are what make the ring a must-own piece, she says. Inspired by a paintbrush she used as a student in fine art at Parsons School of Design, it includes all of the elements So recalls, from the shape of the brush handle to its metal ferrule. The ring is hand-painted by New York jewelry artisans so the bristles look as if the wearer had dipped them in paint, she says. It also features the inscription “paint your dreams” on the shank to remind owners they have endless possibilities when it comes to their own creativity, So says.

Mimi So AAPI ring
The unisex 18k yellow gold ring with red enamel comes in three sizes, retailing at $1,480 for small, $2,780 medium, and $3,980 for large.

“Sometimes you need a little reminder to stay on your path and keep living. Don’t give up, don’t surrender your dream,” So says. “I hope when people look at this ring it reminds them that they are empowered.”

Designing a ring with her friend Martin was the start of something: So says she soon will introduce a line of enameled paintbrush rings in a variety of colors. With each new release—whether it is her bow rings, the Wonderland collection, or her well-known opal bunny ring—she is growing as an artist, she says.

“To me, a beautiful piece is when a form can stand alone,” So says. “When you close your eyes, an hour later you can still remember what it looks like and you can describe the work of the artist.”

Top: Mimi So’s signature Parsons brush ring got some bold red enamel for its limited edition that will raise money for charity during AAPI Heritage Month. (Photos courtesy of Mimi So)

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Karen Dybis

By: Karen Dybis

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