Launched in 2000, Jennifer Dawes Design is a conscientious jewelry brand helmed by independent designer Jennifer Dawes, who specializes in sustainable jewelry. She has become known for her organic diamond designs as well as her collections featuring colored gemstones in raw and slice form. You’ll find Dawes in the Design@LUXURY pavilion—a curated section of designers housed within the LUXURY show at JCK Las Vegas.
Below, Dawes schools us on sustainable jewelry, knowing and loving your customer, and what’s in store at JCK Las Vegas.
You launched your brand in 2000, when independent designers and sustainable jewelry were less in-demand. Have you noticed a shift in consumer attitudes? If so, how has this impacted you?
Jennifer Dawes: Back in 2000, sustainable jewelry wasn’t even a thing! I don’t even think there was language for it. It wasn’t until 2005, when I dove head-deep into questioning what truly matters to me as a person, that I came to sustainable jewelry. Metalsmithing is my calling; doing it thoughtfully and consciously is an extension of my love for what I do—an alignment, if you will. Once I moved in this direction, I attracted a clientele that was drawn to my design aesthetic. The sustainable practices became the icing on the cake that has created brand loyalty and a more meaningful product.
Tell us about the collections you’ll be showcasing at JCK Las Vegas.
JD: I am introducing two new collections in Vegas. Our Mounting collection features the most beloved solitaire designs from the Jennifer Dawes collection that we offer for our stores’ own diamonds. This is a great way for our stores to make a better profit and margin from the rings they sell of ours. We are also introducing the Dainty Diamond collection. This is a perfectly on-trend bridal collection that retails for $2,000 to $3,500, for the bride seeking simplicity and a modest price point.
Your selection of engagement rings combines traditional stylings with an artisan aesthetic. Who is your target audience?
JD: My customer is someone who cares about where their jewelry comes from. They want authenticity, they’re sentimental, and they’re looking to creating future heirlooms. With the advent of CAD/CAM and 3D scanning technology, my work cannot be duplicated: It is a timeless aesthetic that comes from the artist’s hand.
I love the “customer stories” section of your website—it really gives your designs life and shows their journey beyond the workshop. How does this inspire your design, if at all?
JD: My customers are the fuel that drives my desire to make a better world. Honestly, I have the best clients on the planet! Through the process of meeting them and designing, I get to know my clients well. They are all doing amazing things in the world. There is nothing better than creating an object of desire for someone. Making people happy keeps me ticking!
What are you most looking forward to at JCK Las Vegas this year?
JD: I am incredibly excited not only to see my good friends, but to meet a whole new market. I have never exhibited at LUXURY before, but I have heard only good things from my peers.
Any plans off the show floor?
JD: Of course! What’s that saying? What happens in Vegas stays in Vegas?