Non-Traditional Brides, You’ll Love These Edgy Engagement Rings
This New York designer searches far and wide for perfectly imperfect diamonds.
Published Oct 6, 2017 3:30 PM
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jewelry line—grew up in the West Village of New York City before studying painting at The Cooper Union. ”I’ve always been pretty artistic,” she says. “Drawing was my first love for as long as I can remember.”
Creativity ran in the family: Growing up, her parents ran a business called Temptu, a temporary tattoo and cosmetics company. ”My first professional creative venture was designing tattoos and doing body art,” she says. A design junkie and CFDA member since 2014, whose love of unconventionally cut diamonds has caught the eye of many a Hollywood star—her gems have graced the likes of Rihanna, Jennifer Lawrence, and Gwyneth Paltrow, to name a few—Zuckerman’s edgy, elegant engagement rings are perfect for the discerning bride-to-be who believes that just the right amount of punk belies all prettiness. And all the jewelry is handmade in New York City.
“Basically,” she says, “I always say I live my life one-tenth of a millimeter at a time.”
On Art And Jewelry
“I studied painting at The Cooper Union, and after graduating, I became fanatically obsessed with jewelry. Art and jewelry have always been two sides of the same coin of who I am, and once I discovered my love for jewelry, I was hooked. I became a sponge! I met Philip Crangi, who to this day is an important mentor, and began assisting him with designing his collection, Giles & Brother. The rest, as they say, is history…”
On Her Studio
“My studio is monochromatic, minimal, and graphic, with a lot of high contrasting black and white. I have always wanted to work in a white, tranquil space, with graphic, black, tough, minimal pieces in it. I can’t think creatively in spaces with clutter or color. I want clients to feel inspired, calm, and focused when they walk in, so that they can appreciate tiny, beautiful gemstones.”
On The First Engagement Ring She Ever Designed
“The Premiér was actually the first piece I designed for my engagement ring collection, Eva Fehren WHITE, and it remains to be one of our most popular designs. It has an appeal to it that is both modern and traditional, and I think many people relate to it. I love its sharp, architectural structure and clean, modern lines.”
On Design Inspirations
“Being a native New Yorker influences my design aesthetic tremendously. I have always been inspired by urban patterns—like the crisscrossing of power lines, or the cracks in the sidewalk. I admire the beauty and elegance of this city, but also the grittiness and the toughness and the tenderness. Specifically, I love art, architecture, furniture designers, and architects: My favorite painter is de Kooning. Also Charles Eames, Paulo Piva, Mies Van der Rohe, Louise Nevelson, Robert Motherwell, and Rick Owens (of course).”
“At the risk of sounding hokey, I think diamonds carry energy, and I typically try to pay attention to the way a stone makes me feel. I am drawn—and search far and wide for—strong geometric, unexpected cuts, very flat stones, and graphic shapes. I also work with traditional cuts, too. I really focus on what feels right for my clients—sometimes it’s a geometric rose cut, sometimes it’s an old mine cut.”
On The Origins Of The X Collection
“The X ring was the first piece in our collection, and remains one of our best sellers. When I first was thinking about starting my own collection, I began with the same basic building blocks I use in my overall aesthetic. I wanted to create something simple, iconic, geometric, and new. At the time, minimal and delicate fine jewelry was hard to find—everything was a statement piece. The symmetric geometry of the X Ring is what makes it really special to me. I was at a painting residency when I designed it. I sketched so many variations trying to figure out proportions and dimensions. I was really striving to create a piece that felt architectural, modern, and extremely delicate. When I finally figured it out, something crystallized, and my vision for the brand came together. We now make other variations of the X Ring, as well as earrings, bracelets, and necklaces. The X is an enormous part of our brand identity. If you look close enough, they are truly everywhere.”
On The Most Beautiful Engagement Ring She Ever Designed
“That’s like picking my favorite child. It feels wrong to choose! I think the engagement ring I am proudest of is the Squelette Ring. It is often the simplest designs that are the most difficult to execute, and I was so proud of the end result. It was a feat of engineering, and in the end really reflected the style of the couple—beautiful, feminine, and a little rebellious.”