The collections will be unveiled within the COUTURE exhibition area and will then be available for sale, a real opportunity to discover a fresh and youthful but certainly also different perspective.
«We are honored to partner with De Beers to provide a unique platform for these 13 talented designers,» explains Gannon Brousseau, director of COUTURE and EVP, Emerald. «It has been so engaging to observe the activities of these designers over the past 18 months. Certainly the capsule collection launches will add a high level of excitement to our event and we are delighted to welcome these creatives to our community.»
The 13 Radiant designers are: Angely Martinez, Ashley Thorne (A.M. Thorne), Jules Kim (BIJULES), Kassandra Gordon (KLG Jewelery), Khadijah Fulton (White / Space Jewelry) Lola Fenhirst, Lorraine West, Maggi Simpkins, Melanie Eddie, Olivia Shih, Sara Bautista, Viviana Langhoff and Zulaikha Aziz (Mazahri). The DAC Mentors are: Erin O'Donnell (COUTURE), Elizabeth Bonanno (The EAB Project) Fernando Jorge, Floriana Annibali, Jennifer Maxwell (Leigh Maxwell), Joel Cheatwood (Gems & Tonic), Julez Bryant, Lauren Godfrey (Harwell Godfrey) , Megan Aoki, Monica Stephenson (ANZA), Pamela Love, Polly Wales, Prerna Sethi (Sethi Couture), Stephen Webster and Zoe Chicco.
The DAC was created in the summer of 2020 precisely with the aim of addressing the issues related to racism that in some way led to a lack of diversity even within the world of jewelry. The mission is in fact to contribute to the formation of a more diversified, inclusive and equitable industry by implementing programs and initiatives that promote and support BIPOCs in all facets of the jewelry ecosystem. The Diversity Action Council is made up of retailers, designers, press and professionals from the COUTURE community.
Throughout their career, the DAC has managed to offer weekly or bi-weekly educational sessions with experts in a wide variety of fields, including brand development, business, financial guidance and the purchase of ethical gems.
«When choosing, we looked for feedback from candidates so that we could match them according to their needs with a particular mentor,» says Eric Ford, Neiman Marcus Precious Jewelry Buyer and head of the DAC. «The goal is not only to promote and support these talents but also to amplify their voices and provide resources based on success metrics to break down any barrier to entry to the jewelry sector.»
The 13 designers were also educated on the provenance of the raw materials supplied. In fact, these are natural and conflict-free diamonds, purchased by De Beers in Botswana, Canada, Namibia or South Africa, in line with the company's deep social commitments and also linked to a deep-rooted environmental responsibility.
The Radiance by COUTURE will be on display at Salone 633 of the Cristal Ballroom during COUTURE 2022 from 9 to 12 June at the Wynn in Las Vegas. On the 8th, instead, the preview event will be held.