Vail: ‘Nothing less than 24-karat gold’ |

Vail: ‘Nothing less than 24-karat gold’

Vail Daily staff report
Vail, CO Colorado
Special to the Daily

VAIL, Colorado –The Squash Blossom in Vail, Colorado is hosting a trunk show by jewelry designer Gurhan now through July 14. The show exhibits the signature designs and the unique hand-hammered craftsmanship of Gurhan Orhan in 24k gold, and now the addition of sterling silver.

“The Squash Blossom always represents one of the largest permanent Gurhan collections in the country,” said store manager Amy Logan. “We have just received a small assortment of unique pieces, perfect for any Gurhan collector to enhance their own collection or someone looking for that signature piece. I’m especially drawn to his rose cut Ruby pendant necklaces and bracelets. The deep red ruby color is such a wonderful compliment to the richness of his gold.”

When Gurhan touched pure gold for the first time,he knew he’d discovered a life-long passion. He spent a year researching Byzantine and Anatolian metalsmithing dating back 7,000 years, and made the decision he would never work in less than 24-karat gold.

Gurhan’s use of 24-karat gold is not the only thing that makes his jewelry unique. All of his designs are 100 percent handmade. He takes pride in the fact that he, alone, makes all the prototypes for his designs.

“Only when a piece is complete and I have addressed all of the design issues do I even consider handing it over to one of my goldsmiths to make any subsequent pieces,” Gurhan said.

One design element that Gurhan does not employ is the use of sketching as a starting point for new pieces. Instead, he goes directly to the bench.

“I need to have the gold and the stones in front of me,” he said. “Sometimes design ideas that might be aesthetically wonderful are a challenge with 24-karat gold. So, I must think technically. I know that most designers do sketch first, but for me, design is so technical, so three-dimensional, that I am most comfortable starting with my imagination and then translating it into something tangible at the bench.”

Collections for summer 2009 include sterling silver and gold combinations, rose cut rubies and rings, pendants and necklaces made with antique coins.

What: Trunk show with jewelry designer Gurhan

Where: The Squash Blossom, 198 Gore Creek Drive, Vail

When: Now through July 14

More information: 970-476-3129 or

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