So proud and honored to call this talented designer, Ray Griffiths, friend! Congratulations on this beautiful article written about him by Elite Traveler. About time people start giving him the attention he so deserves!
Ray Griffiths: Rare and Beautiful
By Manon Crespi
The start of each New Year, for me, brings the excitement of discovery. Every February the Centurion jewelry trade show, one of the United States’ most coveted shows for jewelry designers, kicks off the chain of jewelry show events that will follow throughout the rest of the year. It’s a gold mine for finding rare and beautiful jewelry. It’s also the place where I get to meet the extraordinary people behind the jewelry.
These are the folks who feel the spark of inspiration that puts them on a journey of new ideas, taking risks, and ultimately imparting the intangible into something tangible. They fan the flames of an ember, conveying a sense of their identity into a full-fledged piece of jewelry that will eventually become a prized possession.
Case in point: Ray Griffiths. One perusal through the press page of Ray Griffiths Jewelry website will testify to the popularity of his magnificent craftsmanship, his use of exquisite gemstones, and his dedication to the foundation of when his jewelry life began in Australia at the tender age of 15 years: crownwork. The fact that Griffiths even knows what crownwork is, much less how to translate it into his fine jewelry pieces, speaks of the interesting experiences he’s had over the course of his 40 year career; experiences that to this day continue to guide him and the jewelry he creates for his avid fans.
Shoemaker’s son with a royal encounter. When speaking with Ray Griffiths it is abundantly clear the influence of working as a young teen with his shoemaker father in Melbourne, Australia, played a huge roll in his strong work ethic and attention to detail. He developed his signature crownwork proficiency at the age of 15 years when he went on to apprentice with a master jeweler in Melbourne, who taught him how to repair and restore antique jewelry, tiaras and crowns. Crownwork, a specific cutout technique, was employed by master metal smiths of the 18th and 19th centuries to lessen the weight of royal headpieces. Perhaps this is where his love for history began.
The Regency Ring
The history enthusiast. Honestly? He had me at the Regency ring. Let’s face it, there are a lot of Jane Austen closet cases out there, and I guess until this article I was one of them. But even if you’re not, Griffiths will definitely have you hooked with his Regency ring! The Regency era, the Spanish Moors, and Roman Greco are all historical references that can be seen throughout the Ray Griffiths collections.
Griffiths’ personal history includes jewelry school at Collingwood Technical College in Melbourne, and later obtaining degrees in gemology and diamond technology. Griffiths spent 18 years at ROX, Sydney’s premiere jewelry boutique, where he ultimately became head jeweler and designer. And then destiny’s path turned due northeast…
Green means go. After 18 years in Sydney, Griffiths applied for and won the US Green Card Lottery, also known as the Diversity Visa Lottery, which is open to countries with lower immigration rates in the US. He took this as a sign, along with his big dreams and high hopes, and made his move to New York City. Like many immigrants to the US, especially New York City, the transition wasn’t an easy road. In his words, “Sydney was high school. New York was university.” But with hard work and determination, he forged onward, taking the love of his family with him on each step of his journey.
Man of tradition. Sometimes words fall short in communicating the aggregate of ideals that fill a man’s heart, especially when that man wants to pass them down to the next generation. Ray Griffiths was blessed with nieces and nephews whom he adores, and they are the recipients of Uncle Ray’s own family tradition: a special piece of jewelry commemorating their 21st birthdays. One nephew even received a pair of cufflinks restored by Griffiths that his father once received for his football grand final.
Rooted in love. Beyond doubt, jewelry is Ray Griffiths’ love language. He showers people with love when he bestows a piece of his jewelry, and he offers people a means to express love when he creates it. Each Ray Griffiths jewelry piece represents the culmination of his life adventures, the passion that fuels his life story. Every detail recalls his years of training with his shoemaker father, his jeweler mentor, as a student in technical college, and as a student in the school of hard knocks.
When I first stopped by the Ray Griffiths booth at the Centurion Show, I was wowed by the jewelry. Then I met Ray Griffiths. I was immediately struck by his enigmatic personality, and understood completely why his booth was filled with women ogling over his jewelry and clamoring for his attention. He is genuine, authentic, and possesses a unique, humble confidence laced with certain vulnerability. Ray Griffiths is the rare and beautiful person behind the rare and beautiful Ray Griffiths jewelry.
Good morning everyone! It is Monday, May 2nd and you know what that means? Mother's Day is just six days away! Not sure how any of YOU feel, but for this mama Mother's Day is the most important day of the year. We mothers work incredibly hard - 24/7 all year long - and it is a day to honor that devotion, dedication and love. Yes, those handmade gifts are priceless (and are still proudly displayed in my home), but, let's face it - those cannot be worn. How about a little jewel or trinket to make it extra special? As you know Citrine carries of variety of designers with unique styles - for the very reason that each woman has an individual taste and lifestyle. We are here today to help you match the perfect gift for your special mother. Keep in mind there is lots more both in-store and online!:
For the Classic Mom: Not too adventurous with fashion, and prefers the beautiful basics - jewels that are easy to wear with most anything. This beautiful pair of Ray Griffiths' pearl drop earrings fits this bill perfectly, as it's an updated version of the classic pearl earring.
For the Hipster Mom: Loves her cozy jeans, flowy tops and stacks loads of bracelets up her arms. Has a more relaxed approach to fashion. Anything from Rebecca Lankford Designs will do - she loves to layer necklaces and bracelets and often uses leather and suede as a basis for her designs.
For the Mom Who Has Everything: Impossible to buy for - we feel your pain. Not to worry - anything one-of-a-kind will do. Both Lauren K Fine Jewelry and Stephanie Albertson are pros at this. Lauren has a wide selection of gorgeous "slice" necklaces, like the blue sapphire with pave diamonds featured, and Stephanie has designed a new flower-shaped, detachable pendant in 22kt gold and opals - both gorgeous!
For the Mom Who Likes Dainty Jewelry: She is simple in dress and fashion. Doesn't like a lot of fussy things and barely has time to change her clothes - let alone her jewelry. Never fear, our new jewels from Astley Clarke, in 14kt yellow and rose gold, are perfect for her! Small in scale and great for everyday.
For the Mom Who Likes a Bit of Drama: Generally she prefers larger pieces - perhaps just one necklace or bracelet that will make a big impact. Catherine Page's chandelier earrings or Gillian Julius' multi strand leather bracelet with silver plated tubes are ideal. The best news? Both are easy on your wallet.
Come see us or give us a call this week and we can help you select the perfect gift that suits your special mom!
Hands down, we think the Jewelry by Cari charm necklaces make the BEST personalized Mother's Day gift. All of their charms are hand crafted in solid 14kt yellow or pink gold or sterling silver and can be hand stamped with virtually anything that fits. Monogram, names of grandchildren or children, phrases, special dates, you name it! In honor of Mother's Day, they are running a special promotion and will include a tiny white diamond in every charm ordered. Deadline to order is this coming Monday, April 25th. Come in and we would be happy to work with you to create the perfect necklace!
Stephanie Albertson never ceases to amaze us with her stunning jewels and color combinations, and this season is no exception. Together we have curated a new collection that is based on blues, greens and unique opals - all set in her warm, brushed 22kt gold. Following her enthusiastic lead about opals, we have brought in several new opal pieces for Spring. Exclusively for Citrine, she has created one-of-a- kind opal earrings and an opal "flower"pendant. As with most of her pendants, this flower can be worn on any one of her mixed metal, gold or rhodium silver chains. Also new? Small teardrop peridot cabachon earrings, colored gemstone pendants in greens and blues and a new, small gold layering "enoki" necklace.
So excited about the gorgeous new jewels we just got in from Lauren K Fine Jewelry. Given the soon-to-be sunny and warmer weather (we hope!), we decided to move away from the grays and bring in a more neutral/softer palate of jewels. Pink sapphire and 18kt rose gold pieces, coupled with her opal slice necklace and cocktail ring, simply radiate sunshine and bring a smile to our faces. We feel certain that the new, stunning moonstone necklace and cabachon earrings won't last long. Lastly, be sure to stop in and try on the the teardrop shaped, tanzanite cocktail ring...simply to-die-for!
We have always been BIG fans of Jemma Wynne's gorgeous line of 18kt yellow gold open cuff bangles. Stack them together, wear them next to your watch - the possibilities are endless. Not only are they easy to wear, but they are also finely crafted with beautiful gemstones and diamonds. Now the two designers are branching out and adding some contemporary and modern pieces to their collection. Like a dutiful fan, we are following suit and bringing in their cool alternative, 18kt yellow gold Prive "coil" hoop, Prive 18kt gold ring with double pearl element, and one-of-a-kind Revival necklace with a single diamond trillion and blackened pave diamond border. So many more great options will be in store and online shortly so be sure to take a look!
We were so fortunate to have Fran Cookson, Head of Communications at Astley Clarke in London, make her first visit to our boutique yesterday! She is currently in the United States visiting several key retailers that carry the line and to showcase new pieces in the collection. She was absolutely adorable - and it was so educational for our staff to hear about all of the exciting developments first hand! Their ever popular Biography bracelets - with gemstones and charms - are now going to have an adjustable element to fit a wrist of any size! They have also expanded this collection to include a additional varieties of woven bracelets and wrap bracelets to keep up with the increased demand for fabulous stacking bracelets at affordable prices! In addition to continuing to sell them individually, Citrine will begin to start sell recommended stacks - therefore taking the guess work out of it for you. Fran also gave us a first look at their Fall 2016 "Interstellar" collection which we think is out of this world. (Sorry, that was just too easy). The pieces are made in 14kt yellow or rose gold and have gorgeous blue sapphire gems set with an "hombre" look - where the color moves from light to dark. They incorporate this look in necklaces and stacking bands that we know you will love. Lastly, they are adding beautiful gemstones to the center of their "halo" rings and producing them in a larger or smaller size - so you will have colorful ring options depending upon your personal preference.
Below is a shot of the new gemstone rings coming this Fall.
Just in time for Easter, we have received an amazing ship of gorgeous dyed exotic skin wrap bracelets from Leighelena Jewelry. All with their signature gold plated jigsaw buckle, they come in yummy colors such as pale green, soft brown and textured blues and black, to name a few. That perfect "little something" for an Easter basket!
We are all big Adele fans - for a multitude of reasons - did you see her in the video with Ellen DeGeneres at Jamba Juice?? A must watch! Our friends at Astley Clarke, London were beyond thrilled when she turned up to an event wearing the mini icon aura studs - also a best seller at Citrine.