Considered the Queen of Opals in the United States, the Australian designer Katherine Jetter has always lived around opals making her a distinguised and legitimate connoisseur of that particular stone. She launched her eponymous brand in 2008 and keeps on growing…
ARE YOU SPECIALIZED IN A SPECIFIC STYLE ?
Not particularly … I have 4 or 5 collections at most. But everything is merchandised for a full suite where I create earrings, necklaces, rings in a matching set.
WHAT DO YOU PREFER TO WORK WITH ?
I love colors – I am a perfectionnist and love colored stones mainly. I love black and boulder opals in very unique colors and shapes.
WHAT IS YOUR THING WITH OPALS?
I manage to find opals that are 3 dimentional since opals don’t usually grow in that kind of shape, it’s rather uncommon. Sometimes you find fossilised opals that you can use…. rather than fossilised shells. However, you rarely separate the fossilisation from the actual opal. I take the rough material and cut in 3D shapes which is what no other designers are doing.
WHEN YOU SEE A STONE DO YOU BUILD THE DESIGN AROUND IT OR ITS THE OTHER WAY AROUND ?
It depends ! Both actually. I find stones that inspire me and make something out of them. Or on the other end, I have a concept and try to find the stone that fits it.
WHEN DID YOU CREATE YOUR BRAND ?
2008 ! And I have been attending the Las Vegas Couture Show for the past 5 years. I sell at Neiman Marcus and some independant retailers accross the US.
Being part of the selected brands participating in Couture is a priviledge considering the number of requests vs. the chosen ones.
WHAT MAKES YOU THE QUEEN OF OPALS ?
I am called the Opal Queen here in the U.S.as I have one of the most rare opals in the world that are on display in a Museum in Dallas. I started going out to the mines when I was 18 and actually learnt how to cut opal material to color gradeing them, therefore, my level of knowledge with opals is so much more significant than average designers who just find finished cut opals and put them together in a set suite. I actually work the material.