It was a brilliant use of moonstone and opal that first drew me to Amali Jewelry a few years back, but it’s the kindness of the designer behind the line and her continued use of those stones—among many others—that has kept me on the constant lookout for what’s next from her. Sara Freedenfeld—jewelry designer, new mom, proud nasty woman—puts her signature spin on each and every piece in a way that, when you look at the jewelry, you know it’s hers. Using a beautiful chainlike, woven design, Freedenfeld intricately dresses gemstones like my aforementioned favorites, as well as the most interesting variations of tanzanite, ametrine, tourmaline—and the list goes on. She’s got an eye for gemstones and the skills to make them sing, that’s for certain. She also knows how to show off her creations, her Instagram feed a colorful ode to her talent as well as a very special new addition—stealer of spotlights baby Ella. Here’s a little look into the social life of Sara Freedenfeld, designer behind Amali Jewelry.
First and foremost: Your jewelry is beautiful. (I imagine that helps with how great your photos are!). Still, you seem to know just how to make your designs stand out. What’s your secret?
Sara Freedenfeld: Thank you! Honestly, I don’t really have a secret. I am pretty busy making jewelry and taking care of my new little one all day so I don’t have as much time as I would like to dedicate to social media. I set an alarm once a day to remind myself to take a photo and post. I either take a photo of the jewelry on my hand or on an interesting background, but I try not to be too fussy about it.
I love the family element that baby Ella has brought to your profile—she really gives your jewelry a run for its money! What are your thoughts on mixing business shots with personal ones?
Freedenfeld: I am so glad to hear you are enjoying them! I wasn’t sure at first if it was appropriate to post photos of Ella on my business page, but I decided that Instagram is meant to be a window into a designer’s life, and Ella is front and center right now for me. I want my followers to see my real life, so I try to be casual and unstaged about everything, including Ella.
This may be hard to say, but: Favorite photo you posted to Instagram in the last month?
Freedenfeld: My favorite photo, hands down, is a photo I took of me and Ella. During the day, Danny [Sara’s husband, Daniel Tishbi, also in the business] and I wear Ella in a little sack for her naps. I often take a walk to the flower shop around the corner to visit all the flowers before she falls asleep. I like this photo because it captures our real life.
Do you have separate social media accounts for business and personal use?
Freedenfeld: No, I barely have time for the business account!
What is your favorite social media platform?
Freedenfeld: Definitely Instagram. I love the simplicity of it, and I feel like I get to interact with my followers much more than [on] Facebook.
First social media site you check in the morning?
Freedenfeld: I’m on Instagram in the middle of the night when Ella wakes up to nurse, but I try not to spend much time on social media because I find it distracting, and between Ella and the business, I have no time to waste!
Which is better: Snapchat or Instagram Stories?
Freedenfeld: I will admit that I have never used Snapchat.
Tell me a social media success story.
Freedenfeld: When I first got on Instagram (always a late adopter), I had a conversation with [actress] Debra Messing, who graduated from my college and is a lover of jewelry. I did a little dance around the house with excitement. It was so delightful to be able to connect with someone that you would never have access to without social media.
Five favorite jewelry-related accounts to follow on Instagram, go.
Freedenfeld: Benjamin [Guttery] of @thirdcoastgems for his tireless search for beautiful color, and for being a staunch advocate for designers. Becky [Stone] of @diamondsinthelibrary brings us the best of vintage and modern designs (and those manicures!). Sia [Maravelias] of @jewelry_maven is the director of Quadrum Gallery and a true lover of jewelry. Her excitement is infectious! Amy [Renneisen] of @thegemdiaries is Sia’s right-hand gal at Quadrum Gallery and instinctively knows how to create a captivating image. @cjdgjewelers because it highlights the industry’s finest handcrafted artists.
Okay, five favorite non-jewelry related accounts to follow.
Freedenfeld: I thought of a genius idea to create an Instagram account documenting all of the bodega cats in New York City (I need to pet and have regular visits with the ones in my neighborhood), only to realize it had been done already! @bodegacatsofinstagram always brings a smile. @pantsuitnation to keep me sane. @thefatjewish for a giggle. @humansofny for connection. @babywearing because that’s the only way I can keep my business going while taking care of my little one.
Social media pet peeve?
Freedenfeld: When I post something about my personal beliefs and people respond by telling me they follow me to see beautiful jewelry and don’t want to hear what I have to say. Well…buh-bye!
If you could offer one piece of advice to anyone just getting into social media, what would it be?
Freedenfeld: Just be authentic, and don’t think too hard about it. Post what you love, and go about your busy day.
Last question: Favorite meme?
Freedenfeld: Maybe I’m old-school, but I was really into planking!