On The Go: Vegas, Baby!

Hi everyone!  I just got back from one of the biggest fine jewelry and gem trade-shows in the U.S., and even though I'm still exhausted, I'm also exhilarated and full of great ideas.

Being this one of the most important jewelry shows on the planet, I had a lot of preparations to do before I went.  Before I plan every collection, I have already decided what gemstones are going to be the protagonists.  This year, even though I'm still using the classic gemstones that have been predominant in my designs, I am leaning more towards unlikely stones.  For my next collection I like turquoise, jade, lapis lazuli, onyx, amber, and coral, used in unusual combinations with the classic stones like diamonds, rubies and sapphires.

After deciding on the stones and their combinations, I set out to sketch out my actual designs.   I took these sketches with me to Vegas in order to communicate my vision to my manufacturers, who come all the way from Italy. This is a lot of work because I have a LOT of people to meet with, each specializing in a different area. They use my sketches to plug the designs into a program called CADCAM in order to be able to order the raw materials and make the wax and silver molds. These molds are used to make the final piece.

When I leave Miami the collections are pre-designed.  It is at the actual trade-show where the ideas and designs are polished.  Here, I meet with craftsmen and the gem dealers, and  I discuss with them my designs and the possibilities to actually make them happen.  At the show I sit down personally with all my sources and discuss whether I can find the right stones to suit a specific design, or if that design has to change according to the materials available.

There is a lot of hard work, from many talented people that go into a particular piece, and more so if I'm planning an entire collection.  This particular show was 5 days of hard work.   Lucky for me (or maybe not!) the show is in Vegas, where there are beautiful things to enjoy.  This year I saw the Phantom of the Opera, and the Beatles: Love.  What great shows!

I also had dinner and drinks at some fun spots.  I loved the food at Wing Lei at the Wynn Hotel on the Strip, and the wine cellar at Domenico's at the Venetian. 

Wing Lei at the Wynn.

Delmonico's at the Venetian.

Even though it was a long journey, it was a very productive time for me.  This trip marked the final step to my new collection, which I will preview soon on this blog.  Stay tuned!

Dani K

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