Q&A: Sybil Yurman on the Enduring Popularity of David Yurman

On Thursday night, I attended David Yurman’s annual shopping-with-cocktails event to benefit the Leukemia & Lymphoma Society (LLS) at the brand’s elegant Tyson’s Corner, Va., boutique. And as usual, it was jam-packed with devotees of the iconic fine jewelry firm.

The big lure for me, beyond supporting LLS, was the prospect of meeting brand cofounders (and real-life couple) David and Sybil Yurman—who personally attend the event every year.

David was, unfortunately, feeling under the weather, so didn’t attend. But I was lucky enough to chat with the vivacious Sybil, who cofounded the company in 1980 with her husband—and personally painted all the artwork hanging in the store around us (for the uninitiated, Sybil is a painter and David is a sculptor, and together they created the famous David Yurman aesthetic).

 Here are a few excerpts from our interview:

JCK: How is supporting LLS personally meaningful to you and David?

Sybil Yurman: I have a brother who died of a blood disorder…it’s always been a very important [cause] for David and I. We’re in our seventh year doing this event, and we’re happy to be doing it with such passionate, fantastic hosts.

Inside the David Yurman event for LLS April 30

JCK: How do you keep the David Yurman brand feeling exciting after so many years in the business?

Yurman: For us, it’s easy. It’s always about passion and following our interests. We’re inspired by travel, architecture, the great museums in D.C. We are always following our interests together…We’ve been together 48 years!

JCK: I saw you talking to a woman who had a huge armload of David Yurman bracelets on. People really are fanatical about your brand.

Yurman: That woman was wonderful—she has even more bracelets at home. We call women like her, who are great fans of the brand, “The Sisterhood!”

JCK: What is the secret of your brand’s success? Why do you think people connect with it so fervently?

Yurman: I don’t think it’s something I can identify. We make things that are imbued with feeling, and I think that comes through in the product…someone once told me that even though the brand is [big], it always feels, at the end of the day, she’s wearing jewelry made by two people. I think that’s a big part of it.

Top: Evan Yurman—Sybil and David’s son, who’s also in the business—with David and Sybil Yurman (Image courtesy of David Yurman)

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JCK Magazine Editor