For Christmas, a friend of mine gave me a collection of essays called Goodbye to All That: Writers on Loving and Leaving New York. Titled after Joan Didion’s iconic 1968 essay about loving New York City “the way you love the first person who ever touches you and you never love anyone quite that way again,” the pieces in the collection reminded me of my own affair with the Big Apple, not to mention the business through which I came to experience it.
The truth is, I’ve devoted the past 14 years to a complicated, yet loving, relationship with the jewelry industry. My story has all the elements of a modern-day romance: suitors, heartbreak, and an impressive pile of precious gifts to ease the way.
I alluded to this relationship in a brief speech I gave in front of 500 people at the Jewelry Information Center’s 12th annual GEM Awards on Jan. 10, when I accepted the award for media excellence. I spoke about how, as a 26-year-old, I was seduced by the industry—and how all these years later, it continues to seduce me. I spoke about my family at JCK, whom I thanked for their unwavering support. I gave a shout-out to my twin sister, Julia, who’d braved the polar vortex to attend the event as my plus one—not knowing whether I’d win or not.
David X Prutting/Billy Farrell Agency
That’s me accepting the GEM Award for Media Excellence (with a shot of JCK’s June 2013 cover behind me!).
As I stood there at the podium at Cipriani 42nd Street, one of the city’s grandest event spaces, I realized that even though I’ve never been married, I know a thing or two about commitment and what it means to devote myself to an industry filled with people whom I love.
So it’s only fitting that I received the honor just in time to write about it in this, our annual bridal issue. The three-part bridal package starts with a feature on marketing to brides on the go (“Marketing to the Modern Mobile Bride”), and continues with a profile of modern-day grooms (“Groom Service”), and a bridal jewelry product section starring the season’s trendiest styles.
You won’t be surprised to find colored stone engagement rings among the featured trends. Consumers finally have gotten the memo: Color is the easiest, most affordable way to stand out from the crowd—just look to our spectacular photography still life, “Get Primed for Colored Stone Jewelry,” for proof.
Before you hit the colored stone circuit in Arizona this month, be sure to read senior editor Jennifer Heebner’s market report, “Local Color: Our Inside Guide to Gems and Jewelry in This Season’s Hottest Hues,” which highlights the best buys of the season. And then apply those lessons at JCK Tucson, the newest show to join the desert lineup (for more details, check out “JCK Tucson: New Kid on the Desert Block”).
Finally, don’t miss this issue’s Social Diary, to see snapshots from my glamorous evening at the GEM Awards as well as the two industry shindigs that bookended it: the Diamond Empowerment Fund’s third annual GOOD Awards on Jan. 9 and the 24 Karat Club of the City of New York’s gala dinner at the Waldorf Astoria on Jan. 11.
Because like any good relationship, my love affair with the jewelry trade has plenty of photographs to document it!