Tuesday, October 21, 2014


Dancing Queen Necklace with Gold Plated Brass,
Gold and Ivory Thread-work and Glass Pearls
The birthplace of singer Ricky Martin, San Juan is Puerto Rico’s largest city.

Named for Saint John the Baptist it is a vibrant location full of historical sites that include the Old San Juan, and modern amenities.  Puerto Rico is also the ancestral home of featured jewelry designer Venessa Arizaga.

One of the fun aspects of wearing jewelry is that a design can fit any mood of its wearer.  It can be rock ‘n roll, demure, tropical or wild.

Jewelry can complement any clothing ensemble whether jeans and t-shirt or business attire.  Arizaga’s nominative, four-year-old jewelry brand can do just that.

Composed of multi-colored mélange thread with accents of rhinestones, cowrie shells, ceramic letters or metal charms choker necklaces, bracelets and multi-strand necklaces are alternately youthful and energetic, or pared down chic. 

There are great color themes: black with gold, rose gold with lemon yellow, slate grey with transparent accents, neon green, hot pink, and of course gold with ivory.

The former Design Director for Zac Posen came about jewelry making through a “happy accident” six years ago while on a trip to Puerto Rico.  “If I didn’t have the ability to go on trips this company would have never existed,” she admits. 
Sangria Sunrise Bracelet with Antique Silver Plated Brass
Chain, Juneberry Rhinestones and Purple Melange Thread-work
“I don’t relax on vacation.  I am scouring the beaches and towns looking for objects.  That is what happened.  I was collecting seashells, and charms and I felt inspired to start building jewelry pieces around these objects.  I used colorful silk thread to weave them together and designed statement necklaces.  That is how it all started.”

Aside from the obvious impact of the overall designs, Arizaga’s jewelry creations highlight intricate, painstaking embroidery work.  Her creative process requires months of research where color palettes are selected, and sewing techniques are developed.

“I describe a typical workday as a creative commotion,” says the New York-based jeweler.  “There will be pots of dye boiling; and I will be referencing hundreds of notes and swatches on my inspiration wall.

These raw ideas thrill and stimulate my design process.  Each design has its own story.  I think the woman who wears my creations is a true magpie.  She loves all things shiny and fancies bold colors.  Seeing a beautiful girl wearing one of my pieces makes the whole process worth it.”

Lily Rose Necklace with Antique Silver Plated Brass
Chain, Orange Melange Thread-work, Acrylic Pink
Rhinestones and Clear Glass Rhinestones
2014 Jewelry Trend AlertSo far color is on the mind of many jewelry designers this year!  

Arizaga holds nothing back on this style trend with both vibrant and muted color schemes in her lovely embroidered jewelry designs.
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