Tuesday, June 18, 2013


Phuket is Thailand’s largest island that flaunts plenty of beautiful tropical scenery including the Orchid
Sterling Silver and Lapis Lazuli Majestic Blue
Dangle Earrings
; Rawai Beach; and the panoramic treat of viewing three beaches at one time from the  Phuket Viewpoint.  

Thailand is also home to featured jewelry designer Matta Nandrakwang.

Like Brazil, Thailand is known for its plethora of gemstones and many Thai jewelry designers including Srimuang and Somluck Komolmith build their elegant jewelry collections around them. 

Nandrakwang opts for the soothing visual of opaque semi-precious gemstones with smooth cuts; a decidedly understated alternative to the icy, aloof beauty of sharply faceted, transparent gemstones. 

Nandrakwang’s selections of dangle earrings, strand necklaces and solitaire rings showcase white, pink and orange pearls, turquoise, grey labradorite and sodalite in designs that are unabashedly feminine and delicate.

The former nurse loved gemstones from youth, and developed a passionate fixation for jewelry making upon seeing a young Hill Tribe girl adorned in the culture’s acclaimed silver jewelry.

“I was born and raised in Chiang Rai.  The area is rich with gemstones and the main activity was their trade.  I developed a passion for a variety of gemstones,” she recalls.  “I have also been enamored with Hill Tribe people’s love of jewelry. 
Sterling Silver and Turquoise Blue Surf Torsade Necklace
I was about seven years old and I saw a young Hill Tribe girl, who was probably the same age, wearing beautiful silver jewelry.  I could not take my eyes off her.  I realized I could not see myself being a nurse for the rest of my life.  I really wanted to work with gemstones.”

Her Snow Princess Ring features a beautiful swirl of silver gently holding a single white pearl.  The sculptural Dolphin Treasure Ring highlights a shank cultivated into the lithe form of the oceanic animal where a white pearl is perched on its tail.

The color combinations are of particular interest that range from muted greys to hues that evoke a quite tropical paradise.  The jeweler’s Lovely Lady Earrings with blue-green amazonite and transparent citrine definitely bring to mind slightly humid breezes and the seawater smell of balmy locales.

“I learned a lot about gems and jewelry over the years by enrolling in gemology school.  The passion is still with me after many years.  I have opened my own studio.  I derive great joy from sharing my enthusiasm and knowledge of gems with my visitors.” 
Sterling Silver and Pearl Snow Princess
Solitaire Ring

2013 Jewelry Trend Alert:   Gemstones great or small are on trend for the year and Nandrakwang has a lovely array of colored opaque gemstones.

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