Integrity and passion are important to me," says jeweler Temple St. Clair. "I'm passionate about my pieces being significant, about striking the perfect balance in materials and design." This passion is rooted in her childhood. At an early age St. Clair was exposed to the palaces and museums of Europe. She went to high school in Switzerland and, as a budding marine biologist, participated in underwater research projects with Jean-Michel Cousteau. But an interest in art and literature led her to Florence, where she was inspired by Bronzino's portraits. "It wasn't so much the jewelry in them but the suggestion of it. I wanted to re-create the feeling, so I designed some pieces, and the rest followed."
St. Clair, who with the backing of Tiffany & Co. recently opened boutiques in Costa Mesa, California, and Short Hills, New Jersey, favors classic shapes and cool-hued gems. "I love blues, so much of my work is set with aquamarines and blue moonstones. Louis Comfort Tiffany also used a lot of blue moonstones, so I guess you could say we're kindred spirits."
Cuffs: granulated gold ($6,500), pink tourmaline ($11,000), blue moonstone ($17,500), vine ($5,500), green beryl ($38,000), emerald ($19,500), triple-stone aquamarine and iolite ($10,000). All set in 18-karat yellow gold; 800-590-7985.