Jewelry insider Katerina Perez has made some much-appreciated space inside her hectic schedule to provide us with an exclusive interview that will answer all our curiosities and jewelry concerns. A jewelry specialist with incredible insight into the most coveted industry, Russian-born and London-based Katerina Perez has left an indelible mark on the jewelry industry unrivalled by anyone. Having trained at The Gemological Association of Great Britain, Perez worked as a freelance journalist and content editor since 2011, only to establish her own website in 2013 which has since become among the world’s best jewelry resources. Katerina has single-handedly helped launch and shape the careers of quite a number of jewelry brands across the globe simply by recognising hidden talents when she saw them.
“The first thing I always pay attention to is designer’s DNA – what makes them different from everybody else. Being a designer – not a manufacturer – involves coming up with new, fresh ideas that often include using original jewelry materials or techniques to transform something from one’s imagination into a tangible piece of art.” Perez explains her process of scouting young jewellers and helping them establish brands that would catch the public’s eye.
A self-proclaimed jewelry addict from the tender age of three, Perez was infatuated by her grandmother’s jewellery collection, she would display her grandmother’s pieces and play with them for hours on end. Despite her current obsession with gemstone and design, but Katerina feels that growing up surrounded by her family’s heirlooms made her love and appreciate different styles and types of jewelry! “It was my fascination with all things sparkly that made me want to learn about jewelry brands and styles, gemstones and jewelry-making techniques. I also worked in jewelry retail and management for around six years, so I believe it was ‘meant to be’”.
Her parents had further influence on Katerina as she grew up surrounded by art masterpieces from world-famous painters such as Ivan Shishkin, Ilya Repin, and Ivan Aivazovsky; art pieces that her mother used to work on restoring. Perez believes that this helped her train her eyes on what is beautiful, develop an attention to detail, and cultivate a good sense of balance and harmony. “This exposure certainly helped me develop intuition for colours that look good together, and an overall understanding of aesthetic beauty.” Perez explains.
When Katerina was asked about whether she intends to design her own jewelry line, she humbly admits that meeting and working with great designers leaves her immersed in their own worlds; their histories and their personalities all converge together and it almost feels to Katerina as if they are both designing together! “So why would I want to limit myself to just my own imagination?” Katerina exclaims! Katerina uses her website to celebrate jewelry as an art and share her knowledge, expertise and vision with jewelry fanatics everywhere. She claims she is not news-driven, and since she is not a journalist by education, her writing comes from the heart and connects her to so many people who share her passion for precious pieces and fine gemstones.
Katerina sees jewelry as a form of self-expression and considers jewelry an integral part of one’s look. As a lover of gemstones Katerina has no problem stepping out in her drop earrings or cocktail rings during the day, she refuses to reserve her fine jewelry for the night and the same goes for diamonds in her opinion. “Jewelry is supposed to make you feel great at any point of the day!” Katerina exclaims. Katerina claims that her modest jewelry collection serves as a reminder of significant people and events in her life since most of her pieces have been gifted to her. Her absolute favourite jewelry piece is this large solo butterfly earring that is made of titanium with diamonds and a blue zircon.
Katerina has surely left her imprint on the industry and with so many accomplishments under her belt it was difficult for Katerina to choose which of these memorable moments was closest to her heart. Being awarded with the ‘IJL Jewellery Social Influencer of the Year’ is certainly among her proudest moments. She was also very proud to have been recently featured in various magazines such as Harper’s Bazaar India, the New York Times and The Financial Times. And we at CIIN Magazine couldn’t be prouder at being granted this exclusive interview by such a world-renowned authority on all that sparkles and glitters! Thank you Katerina!!