If anyone knows something about honing a signature design, it’s Suzanne Kalandjian.
Known for her innovative work with baguette-shape stones, the founder of Suzanne Kalan made an explosive impact when she debuted her signature Classic Diamond Fireworks bangle, a sleek but scattered setting of diamonds that packs a punch in its presence.
That was 10 years ago, and while the creation has gone on to spawn a glorious array of additions to the Fireworks collection, its decade of design is worthy of a celebration.
Below, JCK gets the details from Suzanne Kalandjian about the past 10 years of design, and how the baguette has spurred an icon for the next decade to come.
How have you seen the demand/interest in baguette diamond jewelry change in the last 10 years? Have you seen it extend to one particular category over another?
It’s fascinating to see how perceptions of baguette diamonds have completely transformed over the past decade. Once considered the “underdog” of diamond shapes and often dismissed by retailers, they have now moved into the spotlight, largely due to a reimagining of their potential.
I’ve always been drawn to the subtle yet unmistakable allure of baguette diamonds—their ability to captivate from any angle with their restrained brilliance. My vision was to create pieces that balance understated elegance with striking originality. Our Classic Diamond Fireworks Bangle (pictured at top) was a pivotal creation that forever altered the industry’s perspective on the baguette cut.
From this bangle came the iconic Fireworks collection, which now boasts an expansive selection of products including tennis necklaces, bracelets, earrings, and a multitude of rings, each with its own unique flair. A showstopper in this collection is our recently introduced Five Layer Tennis Bracelet, an opulent ensemble featuring 20 carats of meticulously arranged baguette diamonds.
In terms of color, we’ve added a vibrant spectrum of sapphires to the mix, with our Bold Burst Rainbow Sapphire Tennis Necklace being a standout piece. This necklace features an eye-catching blend of 11-plus carats of baguette cut sapphires and diamonds, providing a bold yet refined statement.
And for the ultimate tennis necklace aficionado, we offer a luxurious 64-inch piece adorned with 20.50 carats of baguette diamonds, offering the flexibility to be worn long or doubled for a layered effect. Like our bangle, this necklace is designed to be a forever piece in anyone’s collection.
So, to sum it up, while baguette diamonds once sat in the shadows, they’ve now taken center stage in multiple jewelry categories, showcasing their enduring appeal and versatility.
Your jewelry is much imitated, though your experimentation with baguettes has influenced an array of different designs from other perspectives. How do you feel about being an inspiration to the industry? On the other hand, how do you deal with copycats?
In a way, imitation is a form of flattery. If another designer feels compelled to borrow from my work, it suggests that what I’ve created resonates strongly enough to capture their attention. That said, the flip side of this flattery is undeniably frustrating. When you invest your soul, not just time and resources, into crafting something truly unique, it’s disheartening to see it replicated without acknowledgment.
However, this is a reality in our industry that’s unlikely to disappear. What sustains me is the incredible loyalty I’ve experienced from my retail partners, who appreciate the originality and craftsmanship that define each piece in my collections.
How has the way you work with baguettes evolved over the last 10 years? What sort of influences have played a part?
My journey with baguette diamonds has been deeply influenced by a blend of life experiences, including travel, art, and literature. These inspirations have continually fueled my curiosity, prompting me to experiment and expand on the baguette’s potential. Whether mixing them with princess and round cuts, or pairing them with vibrant colored gemstones, I’ve found fresh ways to spotlight their unique geometry.
My most recent collection, Block Chain, offers a novel take that shifts the spotlight from the gemstone to the craftsmanship of the gold setting itself. Inspired by the baguette diamond’s unique form, this collection incorporates both solid and hollow rectangular blocks in an interconnected design. The result pays homage to art deco aesthetics while challenging traditional notions of what a centerpiece should be, highlighting either a single standout gem or a delicate cluster. In this way, the baguette cut isn’t just an element but serves as the muse for the collection.
What are your hopes and plans for the next 10 years when it comes to the evolution of your design?
While the growth and success of the SK brand holds a special place in my heart, my family remains my ultimate priority. Their love and support have been instrumental in shaping the brand into what it is today. Looking forward, I intend to balance time with my cherished grandchildren while also nourishing the brand’s legacy.
Our valued customers have played an enormous role in our success, and their continued support fuels my aspirations for the brand’s future. I plan to stay in tune with their needs, constantly evolving and expanding our collections to remain not just timeless but also relevant. I’m particularly excited about diving deeper into pearl-centric designs and I also envision the launch of a signature platinum collection. In essence, I want the SK brand to be synonymous with innovative yet enduring elegance.
Top: Suzanne Kalan’s Classic Fireworks bangles are celebrating their 10th anniversary.Follow JCK on Instagram: @jckmagazine
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