Last year during the LUXURY show, I distinctly remember how Jerry Kiladjian, owner and head designer at Supreme Jewelry, based in Los Angeles, played the role of proud papa. As he and daughter Taleen Kiladjian, the firm’s vice president of merchandising—she joined the family business three years ago, armed with a graduate gemology degree from the GIA—showed me new pieces, he brimmed with pride about how his daughter was adding more colored stones to his primarily diamond line. Fast forward to today, and that respect continues to grow, particularly in light of Taleen’s latest accomplishment, a one-of-a-kind watermelon tourmaline and diamond necklace set in 18k gold.
Upon Taleen’s arrival to her pop’s 30-year-old design business, she began collecting gorgeous rough-cut tourmalines from a couple of her favorite vendors. By last spring (two and half years later), she was certain she had just the right mix of seven unique statement stones. She and her dad and an in-house bench jeweler designed and created the stunning necklace below.
“When I saw those tourmalines, they almost sang to me because of their character and personality,” she says. “Clarity-wise they are not perfect stones, but with the flaws and odd shapes I noticed it enhanced the individuality and beauty of each stone. My father and I wanted to create a fun and bold statement necklace, yet still elegant and true to our classic design aesthetic.”
The family entered it into the 2013 JCK Jewelers’ Choice Awards, and also created a bevy of complementary pieces as well as smaller interpretations, which have been selling well. A case in point: A few pairs of earrings sold to a store in Oklahoma before the holidays. And during another pre-holiday event, a matching bracelet sold, but earrings and the necklace remain. A ring is in the works.
Both Kiladjians think the necklace’s final destination may be in the home of a well-to-do Floridian or Californian because of its playful color scheme.
“Tourmaline is one of my favorite stones,” Taleen says. “And for a big piece that I designed, it’s so cool to see how people have reacted to it. I love it!”
One-of-a-kind necklace in 18k white gold and blackened rhodium with 100 cts. t.w. rough-cut tourmaline, 4.67 cts. t.w. colorless melee, and 0.67 ct. t.w. rose-cut diamonds; $50,000