Front Runners October 2015: Out of Commission
These matching earrings and necklace made from melo pearls—the rare iridescent orange specimens produced by their namesake sea snails, which inhabit the waters of Southeast Asia—exemplify what is possible through the Mikimoto M Customization program (mikimoto.com). (The suite also includes a matching ring.) Last year the program fulfilled 19 commissions for custom-made jewelry suites, each of which began as a set of extraordinary stones, including sapphires and emeralds as well as hard-to-find pearls. The process involves a meeting with one of Mikimoto’s designers, who sketches different options for the stones. Once a concept is selected, the jewelry is made at the company’s workshop in Japan.