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David Yurman Jewelry Complete Guide-Review: Gold, Diamonds, Gemstones

Updated on June 2, 2013

David Yurman

David Yurman, one of the most recognizable fine jewelry brands operating today, was established by an architect of the same name. His education and familiarity with classic arts informed and nurtured his jewelry making, resulting in creations exhibiting a consistent set of ideas anchored in well-formed, and similarly consistent vision. “At the highest level,” the company catalog declares, “Jewelry is fine art – beautiful and decorative.”

David Yurman pays close attention to shank and bezel decoration in the rings, earrings, and pendants – but don't attain the level of detail and richness that defines Judith Ripka jewelry, for instance. Here designers often opt for smooth, relaxed surfaces, allowing the inherent qualities if the precious metals and stones to graciously mix and exert their effects of beauty and refinement. To some fine jewelry connoisseurs, this is the epitome of class.

Materials include sterling silver, gold, diamonds, and wide range of gemstones: amethyst, tiger's eye, hematite, citrine, topaz, pearls, and others.

Design

David Yurman takes an artistic approach in design, aiming to engage the imagination with unfamiliar compositions, irregular shapes, looking favorably on avant-guard and modern ideas. The opposite of this trend would be James Avery, who prefers to rely on familiar and traditional design precepts (achieving variety by drawing from various cultures).

Flowing, expressive forms, soft lines and awareness of space – DY would rather remove a stone or a decorative element than add one that will render a piece too busy. The iconic cable collection, a genuine classic in the world of fine jewelry, effectively summarizes these principles. Sculpted cable pieces in particular seem to capture time, radiating unhurried, supreme confidence, the curves of sculpted wire collection remind of soft river banks, where the water slowly shapes the sand into smooth landscapes.

Patterns, even the most carefully thought-out, seem to feel at ease with the notion of randomness – with the chaotic, unpredictable facet of nature. These particular characteristics lend the jewelry freshness and unpredictability.

Overall, David Yurman jewelry goes beyond elegance: it reveals a deep aesthetic unity with the natural world, as if recovering something rarely seen in our everyday life. That, perhaps, explains its underlying appeal, and, eventually, popularity.

Jewelry

  • Rings, men's and ladies', encompass a range of classic gemstone and precious metal designs (cushion, pave, signet, bands) featuring iconic wired/cable scroll-work. Follow closely different whimsical and irregular models, arguably bolder and more fashion oriented – Confetti, Lattice, Thoroughbred, Mosaic, and X collections, which relish imbalance and striking contrasts between textures, colors, and shapes. Some of the compositions are truly mesmerizing. Bridal rings form a separate category.

  • Bracelets include hundreds of designs, men's and women's, and incorporate gemstone beads, leather, rubber, sterling silver, gold, diamonds, and other materials. Ladies section is by far the largest – gents' pieces tend towards functionality and utility (various cords, identity plate) – and the most representative of David Yurman's artistry. Models comprise carved, sculpted, woven and buckle Cable, different cuff templates, multi-row Confetti and Chiclet pieces, Mosaics, chain links, charms bracelets, and more.

  • Necklaces display an arch of chain designs, where men's pieces carry shield or tags, and women's opt for gemstones, diamond pave, gold links, hearts, rings, and otherwise more elaborate (some quite) configurations. Bead necklaces employ onyx, corals, and turquoise; pearls and quartz also make an appearance. A surprising jewelry segment in David Yurman selection in that it often opts for relatively harsh, seemingly simplified, uncompromising layouts.

  • Earrings combine ideas from the ring, necklace, and pendant departments, representing them in drop, stud, dangle, hoop, and mobile ( a type of chandelier) pieces; cable earrings receive an injection of visual force, becoming almost like little fists (or Gordian knots). Conversely, semi open and pearl bead based variants radiate serenity and calm rarely found in previously described categories.

  • Pendants, perhaps due to their kinship with charms (a category that doesn't officially exist in David Yurman), features a wealth of botanical, heart, and otherwise lightly whimsical and magical jewelry pieces – complimented by classic cushion and oval crystal enhancers. Includes several cross models.

  • Watches reveal subtle Patek Philippe (Nautilus and Aquanaut in particular), Ulysse Nardin, and even Rado influences: soft squared cases, supported by cable or brick bracelets, or alligator, python, or lizard straps. Separate ladies watches resemble high jewelry Jaeger Lecoultre timepieces.

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