Yael Designs Celebrates 20 Years of Coloring Outside the Lines

On the eve of Yael Designs’ 20th anniversary, we chart Yehouda Saketkhou’s journey from Union Square kiosk to San Francisco giant Brilliant purples. Piercing, almost neon, blues. Searing oranges. When so much of the industry seems to be moving toward monochromatic pieces and diamonds, Yael Designs has doubled down on palette, building heart-stopping pieces around gorgeous gems with colors that practically slap you in the face. “It’s hard to see new ideas in the jewelry business today,” owner and founder Yehouda Saketkhou says. “More than anything, despite what’s happening in the world, that’s what we try to do.” Humble Beginnings Saketkhou’s journey in jewelry began after he arrived in San Francisco from Iran at age 13. He worked for his uncles at a modest jewelry store on the main drag in the heavily touristed Fisherman’s Wharf neighborhood. The store sold h

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