Although it’s technically not yet the most wonderful time of the year, it’s officially time to start thinking about holiday gifting. Earlier this year, Sara Commers of Commers Custom Jewelers approached Artful Living about collaborating on a custom, limited-edition ring that embodies our legacy of luxury and the spirit of the season. The Minneapolis-based jeweler chatted with us about the perks of investing in handcrafted jewelry, her sources of inspiration and her process in creating Artful Living’s exclusive holiday ring.
How long have you been making jewelry and where do you find creative inspiration?
I have been making jewelry professionally for 20 years, but my earliest creations began when I was 6 years old. I was fascinated with the colors and combinations I could string together with seed beads.
My inspiration for each piece that I design and create comes from many places. I always consider the person who will be wearing it and what suits their style and taste best. I also find a lot of inspiration for designs when I am traveling to new places; I am able to have the time and freedom to be creative, explore, and allow ideas to flow and develop. I carry a notebook with me, like most artists and designers, and I sketch lots of ideas for new designs. I fear I will not have enough time to make them all.
What’s your favorite piece of jewelry that you’ve made?
My favorite piece of jewelry is the last one I made and the next one that I will create. I am proud of many of my designs but I feel like the design process is a constant evolution. Every new jewelry design allows me to try something new and build something fabulous for someone special who will wear it often.
Can you elaborate on the perks of handmade jewelry?
Handmade jewelry has such a personal touch to it; the weight of it is usually greater and it feels solid and strong, even if delicate. Being able to work with someone handcrafting a fine piece of jewelry for you is comparable to dining at a fine restaurant where the ingredients are carefully sourced, prepared and beautifully presented by a skilled and talented chef. It’s personal. It’s special. And it’s often emotional.
How would you describe your style when it comes to jewelry?
My style has always been modern. I appreciate clean lines, symmetry and classic design. Rings are by far my favorite piece of jewelry not only to wear but also to design. It’s a piece of jewelry that can be most enjoyed by the wearer, as you see it on yourself. My grandmother told me early in my career that she felt that rings were my strongest category, probably because I like creating them the most.
What is your favorite trend happening in the jewelry world right now?
Trends can be tricky as many designs become dated so quickly. But my favorite trend by far is stacking rings. Adding as many rings to your finger as you can is so much fun. They need not fit any specific design category. I wear four rings stacked and am trying to add one more — if I can bend my finger.
How would you describe the Artful Living holiday ring?
When I started thinking about what I could create for this unique collaboration, I knew I wanted a large center stone but I wanted it to be different — not the typical gems often seen in holiday ads. I wanted to introduce color and offer an array of options because color is such a personal preference for each person. This gorgeous platinum-colored Spinel gemstone just spoke to me as it’s so easy to wear with any color and it’s so complimentary on everyone. Adding colorless as well as colored diamonds as accents really brings to life the beauty in this gem.
What can you tell us about the featured stone in the Artful Living holiday ring?
Trusted gemstone dealers who ethically source gem minerals introduced me to Spinel. This beautiful stone often gets confused with other gems and sometimes is thought to be synthetic, but it is a naturally occurring mineral found in Sri Lanka and comes in many colors. The beautiful color of the platinum Spinel will vary from stone to stone, so each one is truly a one-of-a-kind mineral from the earth. They are very sparkly and eye-catching, and have a hardness of eight on the Mohs scale, which makes them a wonderfully wearable gemstone in a ring.