Blog | Greenwich Jewelers
November 12, 2015
Artistic Innovation: An Interview with Todd Reed

Artistic Innovation: An Interview with Todd Reed

There’s no doubt that a piece of jewelry by Todd Reed will win a place in your heart forever. Nobody else does what he does. With an artist’s soul and a deep appreciation of natural materials, it’s easy to see why Todd’s award winning designs are held in private collections worldwide.   Our owner Jennifer paid a visit to his studio last year and was fascinated by his workspace and design process.

Todd looks for inspiration everywhere. His workspace is filled with inspiring objects, sketches by his daughter Flora, and always, always a little jade figurine of Ganesh. During Todd’s visit to New York City this month he will be making a special appearance at our shop and absorbing the architecture and the creative energy of this city where art meets community in such a special way.  We had a few questions for him in preparation for his visit. 

Todd, you’ve been doing this since the nineties.  In all your time designing jewelry, do you have a favorite piece?

Todd: Peaceful Place is a special piece to me primarily because it deals with deep emotion. It’s beautiful and intriguing and also bears the story of personal growth, wisdom and the pain of needing a peaceful place. This piece articulates the beauty around closing down/ opening up, reveling your true self or working with polished outside. Art is simply making an emotion into some kind of deliverable thing, I use my jewelry design to communicate my story.

The award winning pendant, Peaceful Place, on display in Todd’s Venice, Ca showroom. This has a hidden locket that opens to a Moldavia Buddha.

You are something of a pioneer when it comes to designing with raw diamonds and recycled metals. What inspired you to create a sustainable jewelry collection?

Todd: I think ethical responsibility in this industry is difficult to ignore any more. When I started my company, I had certain principles that I had wanted to have at the core. It was not popular to be responsible about sourcing at the time. It was important to me though, so we did it.

This is the type of forward-thinking that delights your fans and keeps you ahead of trend. What inspired you to work with raw diamonds?

Todd: During geology class in high school, we studied rock crystals and I fell in love with their shapes, texture and sparkle. I liked how a diamond left just as it’s found in nature can dictate the architecture of a piece of jewelry.

In 1994, I met one of the top collectors of raw diamonds who also loved these gems for their unique qualities over any monetary value.

What is your favorite part about what you do?

Todd: Connecting with people and expressing my feelings through art.

That’s definitely something that comes through in your work! How often do you sketch or draw?

Todd: I am constantly sketching – I have hundreds of sketches on napkins, scrap paper and in notebooks. My sketch books provide a constant reservoir of designs that I pull from.

How much leeway to create do you give your artisans?

Todd: I am the only designer. However, we do create custom designs and often clients work on a piece with an account manager, but before being made, I approve the design.

I meet regularly with the shop master to discuss and work through fabrication details.  Each jeweler will create the piece from start to finish, which is unique in the jewelry industry. Keeping each piece with one jeweler keeps the aesthetic and the energy of the piece in balance.

What factor about yourself, do you feel is the biggest contributor to your success?

Todd: I constantly stay true to my vision.

You certainly have an authentic voice – your tagline Raw Elegance really hits the nail on the head. Where do you hope to see your brand in 10 years?

Todd: Ten years I'll still be the founder, designer and CEO of TRI, and designing the most innovative and beautiful jewelry I can.

That sounds like a plan! We can’t wait to see what the future holds for Todd Reed and his growing empire. 

Art is simply making an emotion into some kind of deliverable thing,

I use my jewelry design to communicate my story.

-Todd Reed

November 06, 2015
The Art of Embracing Damage

The Art of Embracing Damage :

An Interview with Jamie and Jeremy Joseph

Every once in awhile a designer comes along that dares to look at jewelry in a transformative way. Jamie and Jeremy Joseph have been doing this since they began creating their namesake collection over 20 years ago. Who would dare drill a gemstone and set a diamond into it? Only these two crazy kids. Their diamond studded rings immediately became highly coveted by jewelry connoisseurs. Those who were in the know immediately began building their personal collections. We have two clients who became fast friends after meeting and striking up a conversation over a rainbow moonstone Jamie Joseph ring. (Their second encounter happened here pouring over our selection, natch.) Yet another client’s collection spans 40 rings and 10 years of fandom.


It’s tough not to be fans of the design duo. Their pieces are not only beautiful, wearable and original but they are filled with the intense good energy of artists doing what they love, creating beauty and sending it out into the world. I took a few minutes to chat with them while they were in the store today about their work and the new collection, Golden Joinery.


GJ: Let’s talk about Golden Joinery. This collection is very special. The concept of embracing, adorning and presenting imperfection in a beautiful way really resonates with me. Tell us how it came to be, how long have you been working on it?


Jamie: Well, 20 years! We’ve been throwing broken stones in this beautiful African ceremonial bowl, we call it the boneyard, forever. And when I read the Kinsugi thing it was like a lightbulb moment. I knew right then why I’d been saving the stones for all those years.

Note: Kintsugi is the Japanese pottery-mending technique where broken ceramics are repaired with golden seams. As a philosophy, Kintsugi can be expressed as an embracing of the flawed or imperfect.  It treats breakage and repair as part of the history of an object, rather than something to disguise.


GJ: How did that happen?


Jeremy: A friend of ours sent it to Jamie and was kinda like, I saw this and I thought of you. And then Jamie saw it and took it to the stones.


Jamie: After that aha moment, I got to work and it took about a year to create the first small collection which I presented at the Couture show this past June.


GJ: Tell us about the creation process. What were the challenges?


Jamie: I love 22k gold, it’s so rich and ancient feeling, and I wanted the pieces to look like something buried, like an archaeologist would unearth. The fabrication process is all handmade and stones would break again or I’d have to send them to Jeremy to re-cut to fit the design I was working on. Its super-labor intensive, but I love the fact that it’s so thoughtful.


GJ: Are you pleased with the end result?


Jamie: Oh, I love it! I feel it’s such a great message about sustainability in gemstones and I feel the new joined stones are almost more beautiful than they were originally. For example, the green tourmaline necklace we brought in for the trunk show, that stone came back to me as a resize and during the work we broke it. When that happened, I literally cried because that stone was so amazing.

GJ: It sure is! We’re all obsessed with the new work. It’s such a sophisticated evolution of the collection and I love the meaning and intention behind transforming perceived damage into wearable art.


GJ: What’s next for Jamie Joseph?


Jamie: We’ve become kind of like a machine and with Golden Joinery my creativity really began to flow again. You’re going to see lots of changes to the line.

GJ: How exciting! We'll be waiting with bated breath to see what that means!

Written by: Jennifer Gandia, Owner at Greenwich Jewelers