Wednesday, April 25, 2012

KIMBERLY McDONALD

18-Karat Gold Goede Ring with Diamond
For forty-three years, New York’s Madison Square Garden has been New York City’s “longest active major sporting facility.”

In addition to maintaining its place as a leading arena for sports, The Garden, as it also known, is also the world’s third largest music arena.  New York is also the birthplace of Kimberly McDonald.

A number of jewelry designers create beautiful geode jewelry that slants more towards a bohemian, new-age type of vibe.  

Outlines run the gamut of classic, simple pieces often wrapped with gold wires to statement makers like a gold cuff bracelet with a single, large geode at its center.  In any event the overall personality of either style is natural and organic, bold and pure.

A favorite of such celebrities as Courteney Cox, Jennifer Aniston, Kate Hudson and First Lady Michelle Obama, McDonald’s 18-karat gold and geode jewelry is more evening gown than maxi dress. 

She presents geodes in what appear to be smoother, more refined facets outlined in tiny conflict-free diamonds while still maintaining that fabulous raw look.  Her dangle earrings, gold rings, and gemstone pendants are a decidedly updated, modern take on the bohemian style.

The integrity of geodes—their more authentic, unique beauty—is undeniable.  This is a sentiment that McDonald holds not only for these beautifully organic stones but for all the agates, baroque pearls and raw emeralds she incorporates into her fine jewelry collection.

“I have always been a rock nut,” says the North Carolina native and owner of six pet Chihuahuas.  “I used to sit in my grandmother’s driveway for hours picking the agate out of the gravel. 

Natural Chyrsocolla Druzy Pendant Necklace

It amazes me that as much as we try to manufacture beauty, nature still trumps whatever we can conjure.  Every piece I design is based in how to best enhance what is natural and unique about every stone.”

McDonald’s love of nature is also evident in the eco-friendly manner in which she selects the components of her designs.  “As a jewelry designer I recognize there is an abundance of material out there and that we need not continue to harvest many of the materials needed to create.

I strive to reuse or rework antique pieces. I use late 19th and early 20th century cameos that were never set into jewelry.  I use reclaimed wood from ships and guitars, recycled gold and diamonds whenever possible.  I approach what I do with a healthy respect for conservation.”

In the end, McDonald’s diamond and geode jewelry is chic and stylish; an effortlessly classic collection evoking the quintessential nature girl.  “My pieces can go from jeans and T-shirt to the red carpet.  I don’t believe that fine jewelry should be viewed as a commodity.  I believe having a fresh, unique and distinctive product keeps jewelry relevant. 

Right now consumers are not looking to buy something they have seen before.  A jewelry purchase nowadays reflects a consumer’s connection with a particular item.  It is on a deeper level than just consumerism.”

18-Karat Gold White Geode and Diamond
Cuff Bracelet
For more on McDonald's jewelry designs check out her Facebook page.

Also, be sure to watch Veronica Webb’s (of CIRCA) interview with McDonald to learn more about the designer’s eco-friendly design approach. 
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