One look at jewelry designer Ana Khouri and her meticulously crafted diamond jewelry, and you know you’re dealing with something special. “I’m a sculptor, that’s how I started,” Khouri exclusively shared with Only Natural Diamonds at The European Fine Art Fair (TEFAF) in New York. “Instead of drawing or sketching, I sculpt and then I come up with the design.”
At TEFAF, we were lucky enough to not only get an up-close look at her one-of-a-kind diamond pieces, but also experience the enthusiasm emanating from Khouri as she explained her thought process behind some of her newest designs.
In pieces created with a three-dimensional vision in mind, like the Brazilian rosewood diamond necklace, Khouri’s sculpting background was very apparent. “I wanted the 10.5 carat yellow diamond to almost settle within the rosewood,” she tells OND.
The entire piece comes across like a juxtaposition of metals, between the diamond set in the wood and the yellow and white gold plates above the rosewood. “I feel like there’s a warmness to the wood that brings out the earthy tones of the diamond and metals,” Khouri explains.
Next, we got an up-close look at a few new iterations of her signature Phillipa ring. “There’s a meditative state that I get when I’m turning them around on my finger,” she says with a laugh. It’s like a fidget spinner, only much, much more glamorous.
“I did it first in gold, and then in crystal with a diamond. It’s nice to have a design that you can mix with different materials and have it turn out to be something totally different,” she muses. The consistency of the Phillipa design is evident with its chunky shape, but each iteration has its own pop of uniqueness, like an all-over pave or a large diamond set asymmetrically on the band.
But Khouri’s TEFAF showstopper? A yellow diamond and citrine necklace, featuring white and yellow gold links and a half-white diamond Riviere. “When I got that gem I actually had the design idea right away,” she explains. “You have the yellow gold up top, and then it drops into the white gold chains. Then you have the white gold riviere dropping right there after the chains. And then the centerpiece is the yellow diamond.”
When showing us this piece, Khouri’s excitement was palpable, especially when it came to the citrine gems that framed the 20.65 carat fancy vivid yellow diamond. “I love the juxtaposition of the color with the citrine because it’s a combination you would never think of,” she tells us. “And I love mixing materials and I thought just how the white and yellow gold chains mixed together, the color of these yellows went together so well too, it just made sense for me.” Looking at the final product, it’s clear Khouri’s vision resulted in a masterpiece.