We recently sat down with jewelry blogger Katerina Perez and asked her about her true love...jewelry. Born and raised in St. Petersburg, Russia, she knew she'd follow her parents' footsteps into the field of art. After working for a few Bond Street Jewelers in London, she fell in love with high-end jewelry and the designers that create these beautiful pieces. She was also a jewelry editor for "V V Magazine", a Russian-British glossy published in London. With only four editions going out a year, Perez had an abundance of information she wanted to share with the rest of the world. The birth of her website, katerinaperez.com , was the solution. Little did she know that her blog would become something more in the future. Leaving her editorial job she became a fulltime blogger. Read below for our exclusive Q&A with Katerina Perez.
What do you look for when deciding which jewelry is most appealing to you?
Katerina Perez: First of all, a jewel should grab me on an emotional level: if my heart doesn't beat faster when I look at it, nothing can make me fall in love with it. Then, I want to know the story of the piece, the inspiration behind it, what gems were used for its embellishment and various techniques that were implemented to craft the final jewel. Quality is very important for me because I cover the luxury segment, which not only includes technical perfection, but also perfectly balanced and well-proportioned design. I am picky, aren't I?
KP: A piece of jewelry can be special in many different ways. I find Arunashi jewelry special because of the original one-of-a-kind designs, often with important gemstones or new materials like titanium. Pamela Huizenga’s designs are also special as she uses carefully selected patterned, hard stones and builds design around them. I admire Irene Neuwirth's jewelry because of her love for large, colorful gemstones, often sliced and put together in statement jewels. Anyone who is able to define his/her unique style and stick to it is special in one way or another.
Which were your favorite pieces in the gemstone category at Couture Show?
KP: For some reasons that I just mentioned, I was drawn to bracelets in this category. I absolutely loved the statement cuff by Etho Maria – aquamarine cabochons reminded me of raindrops and the labradorite bracelet by Federica Rettore in the below 20K category is one of my favorites as the designer used one of my favorite gemstones to create a striking piece.
Which are your top picks in gold?
My favorite was Spinelli Kilcollin, who turned out to be the winner in the Couture Awards Gold category. I absolutely love the concept of fine rings linked together in a powerful combination – such a simple and clever idea! And another piece that did not win but was incredibly arresting is a black gold and diamond choker by Yossi Harari. The choker boasted designer's signature technique of working with gold and they way it was made to look like a precious web.
KP: The thing that I noticed was the opal. They simply refuse to go out of fashion. Katherine Jetter has some amazing pieces with this alluring gemstone as she is based in Australia and works with the best specimens in this genre. The next super hot trend was cuff bracelets. Almost every designer had his or her own version of the cuff bracelet. I found an amazing black gold cuff with diamonds at Yossi Harari's booth and a fantastic cuff set with rubellite and black diamonds at Todd Reed's. I also spotted a variety of rough and sliced gemstone jewels and Todd Reed works extensively with such gemstones.
Which designers and brands, in your opinion, are the ones to watch?
KP: It is hard to say that one designer is worth more attention than the other because it depends on personal preference. It’s quite personal and subjective. However, the ones I am going to name create unique pieces and you always want to know what they are designing next. Inbar, Wendy Yue, Arunashi and Sutra are always on my radar. For more information on Katerina Perez visit her website: www.katerinaperez.com