Trade Show Shenanigans

Jewelry Week in Sin City: Who You Should See, Part 3 – JCK

Sing it with me, y’all…

Bright light city gonna set my soul / Gonna set my soul on fire / Got a whole lot of money that’s ready to burn / So get those stakes up higher / There’s a thousand pretty women waitin’ out there / And they’re all livin’ devil may care / And I’m just the devil with love to spare / Vivaaaaa Las Vegas, Vivaaaaa Las Vegas

Are you there yet? Are you sober? Didn’t think so. M’kay, then I promise to make this as short as possible ‘cause lawd knows you seriously don’t have time to read some silly old blog post when you’ve only gone two-thirds of the way through Tacori’s booth and you’ve been there nine hours already.

The JCK show has begun! And by that I mean Luxury and Elite Enclave have begun and all of the other parts of JCK will begin likely after this post goes live. For the three of you who are “Vegas Virgins” (bit of an oxymoron there) those “other parts” consist of various mini-sections such as Plumb Club, The Design Center, the Prestige Promenade, VICENZAORO, and more. You already know that the timepiece show, Swiss Watch, is part of JCK because you read about who to see there in part 1 of this series, and I KNOW that you know that the COUTURE show is going on simultaneously down at the Wynn because my view count on that post was through the roof, but today I’m going to tell you a little bit more about a couple of designers whom I think you should see at the JCK shows, whether you’d like me to, or not.

How I wish that there were more / Than the twenty-four hours in the day / ‘Cause even if there were forty more / I wouldn’t sleep a minute away / Oh, there’s black jack and poker and the roulette wheel / A fortune won and lost on ev’ry deal / All you need’s a strong heart and a nerve of steel / Vivaaaaa Las Vegas, Vivaaaaa Las Vegas



Brilliant collection by Jack Vartanian

I sometimes dream about Jack Vartanian’s jewelry. This is not a lie. In the last six months I’ve had two dreams – completely different from one another – yet in both I was wearing a substantial Jack Vartanian piece. In one I was working the red carpet for the E Network alongside Ryan Seacrest and at a certain point I absolutely lost my sh*t because he didn’t ask Zoe Saldana about her necklace. I mean, I was swearing and screaming and then I took a swing at him with this huge Jack Vartanian “Brilliant” collection ring on my finger which left this massive outline of a pear-shaped diamond across his forehead. Shortly thereafter I was carried away yelling “you’re no Casey Kasem!” by circa 1985 Richard Dawson and circa 1979 Bob Barker who were dressed as security guards from the movie “Mall Cop.” Totally weird, man. I must have had Thai food for dinner that night or something. It was crazy.

Yeah… so… anyway… what was I talking about? OH, THE RING!

I totally dig this new Brilliant collection of his which seems like a simple idea but it’s done tastefully and with the coolness that only Jack Vartanian knows. Big, oversized facet outlines of round brilliant and pear-shaped diamonds in necklace and in ring form. Cool, fun stuff that your customers will go nuts for. Go see them at booth LUXEE3, and tell them Ryan Seacrest sent you.



“Power” unisex bracelet by Elena Kriegner

I had the honor of spending Oscar night with Elena Kriegner where she passionately described to me what she does and the type of jewelry she makes. This is someone who’s not in it for anything other than the creativity of it, and when you meet someone with that type of mindset, you can’t help but be left with a good impression.

Elena’s designs are sleek and modern as well as being affordable and convertible. They’re sculptures, paintings, and sonnets represented through rings, pendants, and bracelets. They’re feminine and masculine. They’re casual and formal. They’re everything you want your jewelry to be if you are the type of person who believes that the world would stop spinning if we removed the arts from it. Elena is that type of person, and if you have yet to meet her in the unrealistically-toned flesh, you should make it a point to do so.

My faves are her South Sea Pearl collection rings which are made of interchangeable parts and contain an undrilled pearl which can be removed/replaced. Also noteworthy: her unisex collection, Power, which will likely intrigue those who are technologically-minded. Meet Elena at booth S10720. Tell her that Ryan Seacrest sent you.



Oval engagement ring, “Stronsay” by MaeVona

Most stores need bridal, right? I mean, for lots and lots o’ jewelers, bridal pays your bills. It’s your bread and butter, and without it, you’re losing a massive portion of a customer base that’s obsessed with all things marriage related. If couples put half of the effort into their marriage that they put into planning their weddings, I think we’d see a lot fewer divorces, am I right, people?


With that said, if you’re not already on board with super cool Scotland-born Maeve Gillies of MaeVona, then grab one of those casino scooters and slowly (and painfully) (for everyone else) make your way over to her booth without running over a small child or my feet in the process. Once there, feast your eyes on what the future of bridal is going to look like: more color; more creativity; more femininity. The age of the halo is dying thanks to an economy that’s coming back, and Maeve and her team have created pieces that are guaranteed to sell out before one can say “Kim Kardashian is divorcing again.” So scoot on over to booth S10125, and tell her Kanyim Kimye sent you. Oh, and Ryan Seacrest. Always Ryan Seacrest.


Many of you have probably wondered when I was going to use this – my personal blog – as an opportunity to talk about the company I’ve been working for since February. Well, wonder no longer, my dears, because there is no better time than the present.

I had been a long-time admirer of the brand GUMUCHIAN. I had watched their growth from afar and ogled longingly at their stunning designs often staring up at me from the pages of my favorite magazines. Never did I think I’d be part of their team. Never did I believe I’d make a good brand ambassador for them. But it turns out that I really didn’t need to believe in me, because as long as Myriam Gumuchian did (and, well, Michael Schechter) it was written in the stars that we’d wind up together.

To say I am proud to work for a company run completely by women would be an extreme understatement. There’s a liveliness to this crew, and a drive that comes from a deeper place, emotionally. It’s empowering to know that my opinions are heard and that the table is round when it comes to decisions. We all have a say. We all play our parts. And in most of the other companies I worked for, that wasn’t the case.


Gold pendant from the new GUMUCHIAN “B” collection

When it came time to launch the new apis-inspired collection, “B,” I was included on every email, from the naming of the collection, to the charity we selected, to how and when to launch. This was truly a group effort with the concept and design being Patricia Gumuchian’s, to Myriam’s idea of donating a portion of the proceeds to a pro-bee charity. Emails went back and forth from Germany, Antwerp, New York, and where I am in Georgia, and when I tell you that you will be BLOWN AWAY at how gorgeous these pieces are in person, I’m not being hyperbolic in the least. I was floored. And you will “B” too. Trust me.

So put on your fancy shoes and your wine-drinking face and visit us over in PRESTIGE, booth #P-23. Come see Myriam, and Patricia, and Tatiana, and Chris, and Cynthia, and little old me… I’m Barbara. Tell us what you think about “B” and the other magnificent collections we have. We’d love to see you there.

And if you mention to me that Ryan Seacrest sent you, I will give you a big, wet, kiss on the cheek.

I’m gonna keep on the run / I’m gonna have me some fun / If it costs me my very last dime / If I wind up broke up well / I’ll always remember that / I had a swingin’ time / I’m gonna give it ev’rything I’ve got / Lady luck please let the dice stay hot / Let me shout a seven with ev’ry shot / Vivaaaaa Las Vegas, Vivaaaaa Las Vegas, Vivaaa, Vivaaaa, Las VegAAAAAAAAS!


2 thoughts on “Jewelry Week in Sin City: Who You Should See, Part 3 – JCK

  1. Pingback: Tales From the Strip: Part 3 – The Vegas Gems Ride Again |

  2. Pingback: Gumuchian "B" Collection—Buzz | HoneyLove

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