A pair of my favorites: Bouquet rings (swoon, the moonstone!)
Meet Ana Cavalheiro. As her pieces precisely advertise, the jewelry designer is seriously, effortlessly cool. Don’t you love when it all comes together like that? When you fall in love with a line of jewelry, and the person behind that jewelry is equally as awesome? Me, too—and that was just one of the highlights from our al fresco meetup late last week. So, since I Instagram my way through life now, I wanted to share some of the highlights from our jewel-filled lunch.
Ana is refreshingly honest and unapologetically so. In our chat that ranged from jewelry, to travel, to wine (because, of course), and back to jewelry again, Ana admitted that she would rather have a customer spend less money on a pair of earrings than pay her thousands of dollars to create a custom piece they’ll end up hating. She’s frank with her clients and makes no apologies for getting to the (jewel-tipped) point. And ya know what? That honesty pays off. Long-term clients continue to come back, more likely to spend the money in the long run on a design they’ll love forever, not just for now. The best advice for jewelry retailers is to take that lesson to heart. It feels great to make that big sale, but the most important thing is to make sure that your customers are going to be really, truly happy with it. Earn that trust through gentle honesty, and you’ll have a customer (and in many cases a friend) for life.
Many brands have played the logo game and won big. Ana’s doing it, too. Her new logo, in my opinion, is the designer and brand in a fashionable nutshell. The initials are there, literally, in black and white, along with a girl’s favorite motif, the diamond, and…a skull? My original interpretation: It represents the edgy designer mystique of her pieces. And while that may fit, she just really, really likes skulls. Her Charlottesville, Va., studio is positively filled with them, something I must at some point see myself. But don’t for a moment think this is some sort of gothic, morbid abode. Akin to the skeletal decor visible at any Dia de Los Muertos celebration, Cavalheiro sees the motif as a celebration of life, a thing of beauty.
I adore the blackened metals, moonstone (obviously), and lesser-used gemstones (kunzite! She used kunzite!) in many (er, all) of the designs. If you have clients on the hunt for statement looks with no shortage of detail, consider Ana your gal. But she’s done some stackables, too, that have proven to be hot sellers. (Not surprising. How many stacking rings are you wearing today? Probably at least one).
And one last image, my favorite one. The camera-shy designer probably won’t love that I’m sharing this (Ana, I told you I’d use it!). But seriously, this pic is the perfect showcase for her rings: a pearl for an engagement ring (that has managed to stay intact), and a selection of her own designs—check out the armor piece! By the way, that was made years ago. Today, it’s perfectly on-trend. Score!
So thank you, Ana, for taking the time! Retailers, visit Ana Cavalheiro on JCK Marketplace for images better than my Instagram skills can provide, and be sure to touch base with the designer for your holiday showcases!