Many in industry know Vasken Tanielian as the popular and talented instructor at the Revere Academy of Jewelry Arts in San Francisco. In fact, I first met him in 2005 at Revere Academy East, where he was teaching rendering. I didn’t have the opportunity to see any of his finished work at the time, so it was a treat to see his pieces at the recent JCK Las Vegas where he launched a line for friend and fellow jeweler, Yehouda Saketkhou, CEO, Yael Designs.
Turns out that Vasken is longtime friends with Yehouda; both live in the San Francisco area and frequent the same work and social circles. Yehouda called on Vasken to help expand the depth of his own company’s looks—largely significant colored stones and diamonds set in classic styles with a twist. The theme of Vasken’s collection is contemporary Art Deco, which is reflected in the collection’s name, Modeco—a combination of the words ‘modern’ and ‘deco’.
“I always wanted something original from Vasken,” Yehouda told JCK during a champagne reception is held at its booth during the show. “This collection is good for Yael Designs because it’s a contemporary look, costs less than our core line, but is still very high end.”
Pieces from Yael Designs are made in 18k gold and start at $4,000 retail, while Modeco’s sleek styles in recycled 14k white gold with round brilliant cuts of colorless and black diamonds, sapphires, and moveable components (earrings swing with the motion of the wearer) range in retail price from $1,500 – $3,500.
Right now, some 27 different looks exist, but Vasken aims to expand. “We’ll go into champagne diamonds and rose gold, and use some princess cuts,” says the one-time student of architecture.
Vasken has taught so many other fine jewelers over the years that it’s terrific to see him and his designs enjoy a moment in the spotlight. This industry celeb now has a chance for consumers to learn more about him on a wider scale thanks to the new partnership, as Yael Designs is manufacturing Modeco for distribution. Congrats, Vasken!