Each year MJSA hosts an Online Design Challenge based on a fictional story inspiring a design around a loose gemstone. This year participants are taking inspiration from Omi Gems’ 3.18 carat cushion cut alexandrite and the story of a young Russian couple in love. The focus of the story is Galina, a young woman chasing the American Dream, still in love with her Russian ancestry. The designer’s mission is to design Galina’s engagement ring and wedding band around this alexandrite, using any materials he/she sees fit.
The third custom design in this year’s MJSA.org Online Design Challenge is from Pierre-Yves Paquette of Saint-Sauveur, Quebec, Canada. The organic, nature-inspired fashions of Galina’s favorite fashion designer provided the idea for Pierre’s design. The platinum and 18K yellow gold mokumé gane wedding band nestles within the shank of the engagement ring, enabling the two rings to be worn together or separately. “I chose to use mokumé game for the wedding band because the style is reminiscent of the colorfully twisted domes on Moscow’s Kremlin,” says Pierre.
The fourth design in the MJSA Online Design Challenge is presented by Zoltan David of Austin, Texas. Zoltan says he “felt an instant connection to Galina’s story,” because the Russian cultural artistry is so similar to the Hungarian art and architecture of his own heritage. Zoltan used his patented shaped metal inlay process along the platinum rings, with 24K inlaid gold shaped into beads, leading the eye back to the center stone. “I made sure each element kept the focus on the alexandrite, a prospect I enjoyed because the more beautiful the gemstone, the easier it is to work with.”
The fifth submission for the 2013 MJSA Online Design Challenge is from Boris Goynatsky of BG Art Jewelry Atelier in New York City. Galina’s story literally hit home for Goynatsky, as Russia is his native country. Incorporating the three pillars of Russian culture- home, faith, and motherland- Goynatsky’s platinum ring set eludes each of these elements to capture the Russian spirit. “To represent Russian orthodox belief and faith, I used the typical golden onion heads found on Russian basilicas. They point up to the ever-changing Russian sky, beautifully symbolized here by the color-change alexandrite,” says Goynatsky.
At Omi Gems we have one of the largest selections of fine quality loose alexandrite, and are proud to sponsor the 2013 MJSA Online Design Challenge. Stay tuned to our blog and MJSA’s website to cast your votes for your favorite designs later this year!