The Winners of the Couture Design Awards

Among the brands awarded in the Las Vegas event competition, many Italian ones, both among the Best in Debuting and the People’s Choice

  • ONDYN: 1st Best in Diamonds Below $40K


The Couture Design Awards are a bit like the Oscars of jewelry. And this is also demonstrated by the tension that usually precedes the moments of the awards ceremony, which was held last week in the Encore Theater of the Wynn Las Vegas. The many competing Italians present at the event, which saw some of them triumph, also know something about it. But let’s go in order. Opening the event was Gannon Broussard, director of Couture and EVP of Emerald, who commented on the evening: “I want to acknowledge all of the hard work, determination and perseverance it took each of our designers to get here tonight. The submissions this year were absolutely amazing; you have outdone yourselves.” He then went on to thank the panel of judges who selected the finalists and winners, which included Alexandra Lipin from Elysse Walker, Amy Lane from Bergdorf Goodman, jewelry curator and journalist, Archana Thani, Tracey Ellison, The Diamonds Girl and designer Marco Bicego. The Editors’ Choice award was determined by attending media, with People’s Choice narrowed down to three contenders before the audience voted live from the theater to establish the winner.

And we come to the list of winners, divided into various categories. The first award of the night, Best in Bridal, was presented to Vanessa Fernandez of Vanessa Fernandez Studio, who made her Couture debut this year, “I am grateful for my community, which has grown over the years. This makes up for all those nights spent at the workbench. The piece was handmade and I redid it four or five times before I considered it finished, so I’m really grateful, thank you so much!” Triumphing in the Best in Innovative category was the Sorellina brand with an 18-karat gold cassette pendant with diamonds enclosed in white sapphires and accentuated by a pencil-shaped pendant with which to “rewind” or fast forward the cassette. The evening also paid tribute to Julie Von Bargen Thom of Von Bargen’s Jewelers, who was awarded the annual Cindy Edelstein Award. Julie was nominated by her team and several designers and brands in the Couture community who recognized the many ways she has continued and enhanced her father’s legacy.

But let’s get to the local talents awarded at the Design Awards. Third place in the Best in Colored Gems above 40K category went to Chantecler Capri, in Best in Diamonds Below 40K Roberto Demeglio, who also took second place in Best in Debuting, a category in which Francesca Villa placed first, finishing third also in Best in Haute Couture. The style of Made in Italy jewelery dominated the section dedicated to the Best in Diamonds Above 40K creations, which saw Gismondi 1754 in first place and Busatti 1947 in second place. The three brands that took the podium in the category deserve special mention. ‘ the highly coveted People’s Choice category, which between a first place for Richard We and a third for Rosmundo saw Chantecler Capri rightfully included.

  • ABAYER: 1st Best in Colored Gems Above $40K


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