Katherine Kim Knows All About the Power of Diamonds to Transform a Design
Artful shapes that get a second glance are Kat Kim’s calling card. She combines Old World technique (each piece is made by hand, one by one) and an inventive approach that defies trends.By Tanya Dukes |
The creative possibilities of making jewelry and its hands-on character attracted Katherine Kim to her calling. “Working at a jewelry bench with precious stones and metals evolved into to reimagining diamonds and gold and new ways to wear them,” says Kim. One of her early standout designs disrupted the shape of earring design. Her Ear Pin, a spear-like length of gold that jabs through a piercing and extends upward to secure behind the ear became a Insta-famous sensation. At first, it took a dose of sparkle to sell the idea: “As soon as I took that shape and started putting diamonds onto it everyone thought it was amazing,” she explained. Her inventive approach extends to the most traditional of jewels, wedding and commitment rings, and she’s become a reliable resource for options that respect tradition but also make it relevant for a new generation.
Engagement rings are so important to couples and they’re meant to last a lifetime. How do you approach them?
I want to keep things classic but with an element of the unexpected. The Emerald Sunset ring creates the illusion of wearing two bands but it’s one piece. I love that there’s visible negative space and the airy delicateness of it. The diamond is set east-west because I wanted to play with the placement of the stone to make it more unique and modern. A lot of brides opt for this one piece to serve as both engagement ring and wedding band.
The Cosma diamond ring wasn’t intended as a bridal piece. Originally I started the design with a small quarter carat diamond and I thought of it as a pointer or middle finger ring. People requested it with larger diamonds and things evolved organically to make it a bridal style. I always love bezel setting and the facets of the diamonds continue throughout the setting. It emulates the stone. I’ve done it with round cut diamonds but also variations in other shapes—emerald cuts, Asscher cuts. It pairs beautifully with a traditional eternity band.
“My thoughts on love… is that it is rare and hard to come by but also the best that life offers.”
Two earrings from your Anerise collection appear in the campaign images. What makes them so photogenic?
The ear cuff and hoop earrings are set with princess cut square diamonds. That cut has clean lines that I love. The diamonds look like they’re floating and showcase the shape of the stone. I like to wear them alone without other earrings to distract but they look great layered with a stud or hoop.
Do you have any jewelry that’s a personal signature?
I have a piece called the Boob Locket that I never take off. It has two bezel set diamonds. I designed it for a friend who was battling stage four breast cancer. All the sales proceeds went toward paying for her procedures. Other than that, I switch everything up depending on my mood. I’m usually pretty casual in jeans and tee shirts, so my diamond pavé Mono earrings make me feel a little more put together.
Why are natural diamonds such an important presence in your work?
They’re so rare. There’s so much history in the stones. I see the beauty in that. And I remember visits from my grandmother when she would come over and always wear her diamond ring. The fire and brilliance is still clear in my mind. When I work with natural diamonds I feel like it’s something I share with her.
For more on KATKIM Jewelry and Ana de Armas, Please visit Moments.naturaldiamonds.com