I'm a European New Yorker, or maybe a New York European. Either way, my background is a mixed bag due to growing up all over the world. But jewelry was always part of the backdrop.
My aunt was an antique dealer who would come back from England and France and spread her treasures out over the bed. To the eyes of a little girl, it was like Christmas and fairy tales and magic all rolled into one. And so my love for jewelry began… After studying jewelry design and silversmithing in NYC, I started to create my own modern versions of the “classic” designs I had seen growing up. I’m so lucky to have the Diamond District with its incredible resources in my backyard. You’ll find me there every week. Ultimately, SPJ is a very personal collection of jewelry designed to bring joy, forge memories, and celebrate beauty. I aspire to craft modern heirlooms that (hopefully!) connect our pasts with our futures.”
Q: How and when did you get started with vending?
A: I started vending in 2005. I was invited to join a group of artisans at a Jazz Night at Atlanta’s High Museum. It was a fun, insane night and even though I had no idea what I was doing, I loved every minute of interacting with customers.
Q: What is your most memorable vending moment?
A: A lady came to my booth and bought a diamond wishbone charm necklace for herself. She had been diagnosed with cancer and was starting chemo the following week. By the end of the transaction we were both crying and laughing. She wore that necklace every day of her treatment and beyond. Jewelry is energy. It has the power to make us feel brave, confident, loved, cherished, and remembered.
Q: Which celebrity would you like to buy something from you?
A: I’d like Cate Blanchett to buy a piece of SPJ because she is beautiful, but not traditionally so. Feminine, but with edge. Emotional but with clarity and confidence. I think she is a modern classic which is how I like to think of my jewelry.
Q: What was your best sale?
A: My best sale(s) are the ones that tell a story or make a memory: brides buying customized gifts for their bridesmaids; husbands buying gifts for their wives; anniversary presents; I’m-so-proud-of-you presents; I’m-so-sorry presents; and I’m-taking-care-of-myself presents.
Q: What is your favorite market in the world?
A: Portobello Market and Bermondsey Market in London. Marché aux Puces de St-Ouen in Paris. Random flea markets on the back roads of Massachusetts, Maine and Virginia.
Q: Why are you so passionate about markets?
A: There’s an energy at markets that is hard to replicate elsewhere. Especially when the weather is nice, people are chatty, friendly, and curious, and you end up having real conversations, real connections. It’s quite priceless, actually..
Q: When you were a kid what did you want to be, and why?
A: I wanted to be a ballerina, an artist and a surgeon. Not necessarily in that order.
Q: Do you have any secret talents?
A: I’m a very good mimic of accents.
Q: What is your favorite thing to do in NYC, and why?
A: Walk the streets, the museums, the Esplanade. Eat from food trucks, at festivals, and at Michelin-starred restaurants. And go to see/hear/immerse myself in live performances, theater, opera, concerts, you name it.
Q: What is your favorite (NYC) restaurant?
A: Blue Hill for turning the lowly vegetable into a rock star. Gramercy Tavern for its timeless warmth and graciousness, and for giving me one of the best memories of sharing a meal with my late father.