Between carats, clarity and cut, fine jewelry can be a tricky market to navigate — especially when hunting for something that feels personal and unique.
Enter Stone & Strand, an online fine jewelry destination specializing in curated pieces from both emerging and established designers. Officially launching on Wednesday (the site has been in soft launch since December), Stone & Strand aims to bring the personal touch back to the fine jewelry market with a shopping platform that feels both intimate and accessible.
Founder and chief executive officer Nadine McCarthy Kahane chartered the project while attending the Wharton School of Business Venture Intuition Program, sourcing inspiration from her own jewelry collection. “The personal side of it really comes from having grown up across the world,” said McCarthy Kahane. “There’s always that sense of discovering precious pieces in each place you go; unearthing treasures in flea markets, digging around and finding something unexpected. It’s that intimate feeling that we want. It’s like your best friend giving you an amazing piece.”
The site’s clean template allows visitors to sort by designer, jewelry type and trend. Currently, there are handpicked pieces from 24 designers, including Amedeo, Elizabeth and James, Lulu Frost and Mimi So. Each item is given the editorial treatment with detailed descriptions and designer information.
Creative director Brooke Magnaghi, a former accessories director at W magazine, makes the jump from the editorial world to e-commerce, a transition she describes as “seamless.”
“It’s so exciting to bring my editorial background to a platform where there are no limits,” said Magnaghi. “The response has been really overwhelming. Designers love how their jewelry is presented. They love the idea of this online destination telling their brand’s story for them.”
In addition to Magnaghi and McCarthy Kahane’s mindfully selected pieces, the site also offers one-of-a-kind and custom pieces, working directly with customer and the designer to develop new baubles, as well as tweak existing designs. “[We had one request] to turn a dragonfly into a butterfly,” said McCarthy Kahane. “The designer [Anna Ruth Henriques] was like, ‘I’ve always wanted to do that but I’ve never had the chance.’ So, hopefully that’s going to be the core of her next collection.”
An on-site gemologist, customer service representative and Web designer round out the small team of five that work on-site in the company’s office in Manhattan’s SoHo neighborhood. Setting them apart from other fine jewelry e-retailers, Stone & Strand does not stock the pieces in-house, but rather acts as a liaison between customer and jeweler. “To be honest, a lot of our designers don’t really have the time to give the level of customer service that we can — that’s really key,” said McCarthy Kahane. “[The site] is the independent voice of authority. You want someone able to tell you, ‘I know a lot about jewelry’ and this is someone who is worthy of being on Stone & Strand.”
Furthering the customer service initiative, the site also features a personal shopper service, The Strand, which provides customers with intimate concierge services, as well as private events with the designers to go behind the scenes. While open to all customers searching for a little more attention, The Strand targets one specific audience: men.
“I was talking to my husband about this idea, and it occurred to me that he’s never bought me any jewelry apart from my engagement ring,” said McCarthy Kahane. “I was like, ‘Why haven’t you? I’m so passionate about jewelry.’ So he said, ‘Because I only know Tiffany’s and you’re too special for that.’ Great response, but now he has no excuse!”
The annual Veuve Clicquot Polo Classic in Pacific Palisades this weekend drew Kate Hudson, Tracee Ellis Ross, Laura Dern and more. See pictures of the star-studded event on WWD.com. (📷: @chelsealaurenla) #wwdeye
In his new book “Hollywood Royale,” Andy Warhol’s Protégé Matthew Rolston celebrates the Eighties revival of Hollywood glamour. Featuring more than 100 portraits taken by Rolston from 1977 to 1993, the book contains photos of icons like Michael Jackson, Cyndi Lauper, and @drewbarrymore, pictured here in 1991. “Hollywood Royale,” out today, will be accompanied by an exhibition opening at Los Angeles’ Fahey/Klein Gallery on March 1. #wwdeye
"Nowadays when life is not so happy with everything going on in the world, I think people come to me for a little bit of whimsy and color and fun." - Designer Rebecca De Ravenel on her cult-favorite jewelry line. (📸 : @vsteves) #wwd40
“Everyone is talking about how the retail industry is struggling, but I think it’s an incredible time because brands who are doing something different and innovative are setting themselves up for the future,” said @adamgoldston, who founded the luxury athletic brand @apl with his brother @ryangoldsten. The Goldston’s are part of WWD’s 40 under 40: a group of industry notables. See the rest of the list on WWD.com. (📷: @vsteves) #wwd40
@eyeswoon blogger Athena Calderone debuted her first-ever cookbook, “Cook Beautiful,” which is heavily centered on the presentation and visual expression of food. Pictured here are her miso glazed carrots from the book. Get the recipe on WWD.com. (📷: @johnny_miller_) #wwdeye
“It’s passion that helps get anybody to a certain point and it’s what’s propelled me,” said Kith founder @ronniefieg, one of WWD’s 40 under 40: a group of industry notables who are changing the face of retail, fashion and beauty. Fieg, who opened a Manhattan flagship on October 7, began his career at age 13 as a stock boy and salesman for footwear chain David Z. “I think staying true to [my] beliefs, hard work and passion have gotten me to where [Kith] is today.” See the rest of the 40 at WWD.com. (📷: @vsteves) #wwd40
25-year-old @samweaving is about to break out this fall, starring in Netflix’s horror film “The Babysitter,” fittingly out today on Friday the 13th. That’s not the only place you’ll be seeing her, though — Weaving’s got a role Showtime’s “SMILF” and another alongside Frances McDormand and Woody Harrelson in “Three Billboards Outside Ebbing, Missouri.” Though she’s got a full plate at the moment, there’s one role she’s got her eye on: Marilyn Monroe. “I’m a little too young at the moment, but it’s on my bucket list,” the actress told WWD (📷: @dandoperalski) #wwdeye
BFF's Poppy Jamie and Suki Waterhouse celebrated the launch of their bag line Pop x Suki at Nordstrom last night. "The line is really about our friendship, and how we are so different but complement each other," said Waterhouse. 👯 (📷: Katie Jones) #wwdeye
After designing the new @louisvuitton and @bulgariofficial flagships and a @chanelofficial boutique opening in Japan, @petermarinoarchitect has another project on his plate: The Lobster Club. Located in the Seagram Building, it’s the famed architect’s first restaurant project in New York, serving up modern Japanese brasserie-style cuisine. Bronze hues, bespoke material detailing, blush and chartreuse tones and a heavy emphasis on Picasso can be seen throughout. Mark your calendars for Nov. 1 for the much-anticipated opening. (📷: @clint_spaulding) #wwdeye