For those keeping track, you know I have one more of the great trio of Vegas trade shows to show you: the glittering, glamorous, utterly stylish Couture 2017 show.
My Couture 2017 show was a glorious mix of new pieces from designers I already loved, new meetings with designers I’d only had the chance to love from afar, and thrilling new discoveries from designers I’d barely heard of. I could easily have spent several more days walking the aisles of Couture 2017 and not begun to feel bored.
I kept trying to come up with an angle for this post, but I’m excited about so many things I saw at Couture 2017 that I’m just going throw them at you in a gleeful barrage of beauty.
I hope you’re ready, because we’re starting NOW.
I’ve been lucky enough to meet a lot of diamonds in my day, but I do think this handful of Kwiat beauties is the largest concentration of carats I’ve ever had on one hand at one time.
It was a pretty thrilling record to set. Thank you, Kwiat! (Kwiat is also where THIS happened, if you’ve been following along on Instagram.)
This gorgeous watermelon tourmaline butterfly pendant was actually the first jewel I touched at Couture 2017!
It’s by the lovely ladies of Buddha Mama and it’s so vibrant and beautiful that I was honestly a little shocked when it didn’t come to life and start fluttering in my hands.
I’ve admired Karma El Khalil’s designs online before, but Couture 2017 was the first time I met either the talented designer (who is modeling her ear cuff above!) or seen the brand’s work in person.
I was rushed at Karma El Khalil because I had scheduled myself too many appointments and I was afraid of being late to the next 5, but even in the limited amount of time I had, I was seriously impressed. There’s something exceptionally compelling about Karma’s designs; her mastery of interesting angles and negative space really spoke to me.
The piece on the left here was one of my favorites. It’s a long chain made of gold – and when I say long, I mean LONG. It can be worn as a drapey necklace, a scarf, a belt, tied like a tie, slung over one shoulder, tied in the hair…literally in any way you can think of. I want one.
This wonderful thing is a carved flourite bottle pendant from Jacquie Aiche’s love potion jewelry collection.
It looks like it’s full of magic and I love it utterly. The little potion bottles come in a number of stone options in slightly different shapes, but this one was my favorite by a mile.
Two gorgeous bracelets by Loren Nicole! This talented goldsmith and designer makes beautiful new jewelry inspired by the aesthetic of ancient Etruscan jewelry.
Loren also brought this brilliant and super cute little Instagram playground so that bloggers like me who came to visit her booth would have a nice backdrop for our photos. Such a great idea!
The designers at Couture 2017 represent a fascinating mix that ranges from the creme de la creme of ultraluxury design to high quality pieces that would fit perfectly into any wardrobe. By which I mean that I wanted many of them for my dream life, but some of them I also wanted for my real life.
These babies aren’t as large scale as some of the other pieces we’ve looked at, but these Doryn Wallach hexagonal diamond studs with black diamond pave are pretty much my #1 most wanted everyday piece of jewelry.
Colorful earrings from Retrouvai! I couldn’t decide which of these I liked best, so I photographed them all in a row on their stand.
I’ve shown you Kataoka before and I’ll definitely show them to you again! This Japanese brand not only designs tiny, impossibly elegant jewels with an unmatchable aesthetic, they’re also extremely kind to certain bloggers who love to photograph gemstones in natural lighting.
Thanks again for letting me take these pretties for a walk, Yoshinobu and Anish!
If there’s anything I’ve learned during my time at the Vegas shows, it’s that Arunashi will always do two things: blow my mind utterly with jewelry that pushes the bounds of what I’d imagined was possible, and ply me with excellent scotch while doing so.
It’s not every designer who brings his own set of decanters to keep his trade show whisky in. Full marks for style, Arun.
Speaking of style: this ring. Have you ever seen anything like it? No, you have not.
Before Couture 2017, my only in-person experience with Lord Jewelry’s beautiful designs came from inspecting what the lovely Lena of Lord Jewelry was wearing at the AGTA Spectrum Awards Gala when we were both stuck in a long bathroom line in Tuscon earlier this year. That was enough to make me want to see more.
I love the rich colors of the enamel on this piece, as well as the romantic, organic lines and the overall luxe, exotic feel of the design. The enamel details on the chain are such a good touch, too!
If you know me at all – and many of you do, by now – you know there aren’t many things I love as much as a tiara.
This one by by French jewelry designer Lydia Courteille is a dream come true. That huge opal in the middle, surrounded by richly hued colored vines and blooms of gems.
Here’s a look at the back, in case you still needed to be convinced that this thing is a work of art. This one was really painful to give back.
Here’s a video of me wearing it.
I’ve been dying to touch a Polly Wales skull ring ever since the designer first debuted them on Instagram.
I raced all across Las Vegas to get back to the Couture show after another meeting to make it to Polly Wales and see this ring 20 mins before closing time. Polly wasn’t there herself, and I could tell that the woman manning the booth didn’t know who I was and was a bit weirded out by how I ran up, sweaty and out of breath and still holding an empty wine glass I’d brought with me to sip on my mad dash from the other casino, and blurted out “CAN I TOUCH THE SKULLS?!?!?”
Thank you, mystery lady at Polly Wales, for letting me touch the skulls anyway. The experience was everything I hoped it would be.
This picture truly doesn’t do justice to this magnificent necklace, but I had to share it with you anyway. This is from Nokos Koulis’ latest collection, Lingerie.
The negative space in this piece and the contrasting hard/soft of the pearls and trillion cut diamonds utterly slays me. Everything Koulis does has this kind of irresistible precision about it – I can’t get enough.
From Nikos Koulis’ twist on the most classic of classic – the pearl necklace – to Neha Denai’s futuristic and utterly unique designs.
The rainbow material of these earrings is specially treated titanium, twisted into dynamic shapes that look like some kind of otherworldly coral sprinkled with diamonds. I couldn’t get enough.
This magnificent jellyfish of a ring is by Arunashi, and it is glorious from its titanium toes to the top of its Paraiba head (so to speak).
I’ve never seen anything even slightly like it anywhere else, and I bet you haven’t, either.
Suzanne Kalan was kind enough to let me try on approximately all of her diamonds. This necklace was my very favorite.
Suzanne Kalan’s use of baguette diamonds has always been revolutionary and this necklace is a whole new level of innovation. It reminds me of a city skyline.
Speaking of revolutionary use of diamonds…this is one earring from Fernando Jorge’s new Brilliant collection. The collection, which took home high honors at the prestigious Couture 2017 awards, is simply like nothing I’ve ever seen before. It’s deceptively simple: if you know anything about jewelry you know hard it would have been to make a design like this work.
I only had a moment with this piece before I had to hand it over to some interested buyers, but I’ll never forget how it moved.
I thought we’d finish with dessert: a dreamy moonstone ring by Anzie, pair with one of Couture 2017’s pretty pretty afternoon snacks.
I have more great photos from Couture 2017, but if I include too many more of them here this post will never load. You’ll just have to follow me on Instagram to see the rest as I share them!