It could be your mother, your girlfriend, wife, daughter, sister or cousin ... whoever is the most special person or people in your life, you can surely describe them as precious. As it happens, this is the way the world describes the gemstones jewelry artist Carolyn Tyler uses in her necklaces, earrings, rings and bracelets. And to add to the cherishable quality of her masterpieces, she always works in 22-karat gold.
As opposed to some high-end accessories, however, Tyler's handiwork is made to be worn. It is designed to be a precious keepsake that the person wearing it simply cannot be without. Thus, the theme of her show Feb. 8 to 11 at Karats of Vail is "precious jewels for casual everyday wear."
"One comment that I love to hear is 'these are my go-to earrings.' My jewelry likes to come out and play and be the constant companion. I want my collectors to feel the same about my pieces as they feel about their favorite pair of jeans," Tyler says.
Tyler's new long cord pendants are strong candidates for this status. Although they are striking and yes, quite rare (one is a fossil ammonite with a champagne diamond, another is a Buddhist-influenced jade disc set between a diamond and a ruby) they can be worn casually.
"I'd definitely wear them to everyday occasions, yet they're unique enough to be eye-catching conversation starters," she says.
Tyler's other standout items in the Karats show include large rings from her workshop in Bali, hoop earrings with interchangeable charms in coral and turquoise drops and for Valentine's Day, a heart-shaped, five-carat Colombian emerald pendant on a gold chain.
Although Tyler loves the world's official day to celebrate love, she says this very theme enriches her work from start to finish.
"In general, I would have to say that my entire collection is about love in a way," she says. "I'm completely besotted with gemstones, really love designing, selling and meeting people to take home my little treasures. There is a lot of positive emotion and passion going into my work. My staff in Bali adore their jobs and my craftsmen take a lot of personal pride in what they do. The finished product has been loved and cared for all the way along the creation process ... and then loved by those who buy it."