Tuesday, July 26, 2011

My Couture Family: Irene Neuwirth, Gurhan, Todd Reed, Lucifer vir Honestus, Jamie Joseph, Paul Morelli, Sydney Evan, Heather Moore, Nak Armstrong, Pippo Perez, Mizuki & A Cast of Thousands

Truth be told, I used to hate Vegas. While Vegas to most means Caesars Palace & Cirque de Soleil, Garth Brooks & One Armed Bandits, Gondolas & Roulette, my only trips (with one wedding exception) have been to shop the jewelry shows every June. My feet move through miles of multiple dazzling jewelry shows at different venues, but my heart belongs to those uber talents who show at the Couture Show at the Wynn. Seeing all the jewelry pouring in from our buys since June, I can't help but recall the giddy surprise of seeing their new collections for the first time, and the excitement of their creators -- now my friends -- in presenting them, some like kids opening presents on Christmas morning.

You might think that putting all that talent together in one room (actually a few ballrooms) would cause stress and friction and even a few diva moments, but from my standpoint, it is one happy family. And a major sensory overload complete with diamond fireworks: Irene Neuwirth with a new explosion of color and design (and an exclusive lockets collection pour moi); Todd Reed spinning our heads with too many new rings to focus; and Luna Scamuzzi & Paolo Mandelli (husband and wife team of Lucifer vir Honestus) with the most incredible one of a kind Italian Couture creations.

We loved the new collection from the smart and lovely Emily Armenta, the stepped up gold and diamonds from Heather Moore, and the endless stacks of new candy colors and diamond charms from Rosanne Karmes of Sydney Evan. Gurhan had new surprises in silver and gold and eye-popping gemstones, and as Tipsy's biggest fan, I took my yearly pictures of the Diva Dog and Fiona (with a couple of Gurhan himself).

Mizuki's edgy new black diamond collection was great, and we went crazy over Italian designer Pippo Perez' new and whimsical charms (PS: My owls arrived today!); Jamie and Jeremy Joseph knocked us over with their new twins -- stone rings, that is -- and Paul Morelli charmed us with new silver meditation bells & a knockout collection of sophisticated diamond hoops and bracelets.

Friend Marion Fasel from InStyle was everywhere, with a huge smile, a ton of style & of course, great jewelry. We loved reconnecting and spending time with Nak Armstrong, whose new breakthrough collection has sophistication and edge and is clearly a winner. Believing in our own mantra of "Pile it On", I couldn't help myself, and dug right in. PS. Don't inquire about these Irene Neuwirth earrings, I already sold them to a lucky lady.

Thank goodness we had already placed our extensive Alexis Bittar collection in New York, which gave us breathing room to visit with friend Jackie O'Reilly. A great fly-by to grab some Pippa Small goodies, and regret that Jude & Frances didn't plant their feet 100% at Couture, since I kept missing them. (Ladies, are you listening?). And bouncing around behind the scenes keeping everyone happy were Couture pros Cindy Edelstein & Jan Mohr.

It was so great to reconnect with sisters Emily & Ashley who we've known since they started designing jewelry (remember Greenbeads?) and see how their work has not just evolved, but blossomed. And I couldn't resist a stop on my way out Sunday to congratulate Moritz Glik on winning a Couture design award, and snapping pics of some major Moritz bling that a client just ordered.

When you think you have run out of steam because Couture causes major sensory overload, the Couture Candy Bar pops up for a sugar high. Not that we were underfed or under caffeinated at the show, really.

Several years ago, after an exhausting Couture buying day and on the way to our rooms, I will never forget passing some amazing music behind closed ballroom doors from a rehearsal for the evening event; opening the door, Charles and I stepped into what turned out to be a private concert by Stevie Nicks. First class, those Couture folks.

Sure, I'll be seeing many of these designers in the very near future, either in their studios or in our store when we fly them in for a trunk show. But there is nothing quite like the magic of being in Vegas with all of them, and all of their original and newly produced work, just waiting for me to dive in.

Vegas? A love hate relationship. Don't gamble, except on great jewelry, and can't wait til next year!

Paolo & Luna

Sydney Evan Stacks

Heather Moore
Heather Moore
Tipsy & Fiona

Gurhan Stack

Paul Morelli & daughter Maris

Pippo's Owls

A Nak Attack

Sisters Emily & Ashley

Moritz Glik
Marion Fasel
Jeremy & Jamie Joseph
Irene Neuwirth & Nak Armstrong

Moi in Irene Neuwirth

Todd Reed