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FrontRunners: Sea to Shining Seas

Jill Newman

Chhaya Kapadia, founder of Maya Jewels (212.473.2291, www.mayajewels.com), may classify her company’s designs as “contemporary Indian jewelry,” but her new Seven Seas collection spans the waters of the world. Kapadia, who left a career as a banking executive to launch Maya, utilizes seed, keshi, baroque, Tahitian, and South Seas pearls, as well as shells, amber, and mother-of-pearl from coastal areas in South America, Asia, and elsewhere. The owner/designer divides her time between New York City and her native India, where she manufactures such pieces as a richly textured 22-karat-gold cuff embedded with small teakwood swirls and a pair of earrings with foil-backed, rose-cut diamonds.

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