Daria de Koning has been designing and making fine jewelry for a decade, she has been creating with beads and collecting rocks for much longer. Daria is a gemstone nerd and her passion for stones is truly contagious. I connect with Daria because she is a sarcastic East Coaster, I connect with her jewelry because she pairs colors and stones in very unexpected ways. She mixes perfectly polished, vibrant cabochon-cut stones with very unique, rough and often rare stones. Her work is incredible. Daria will be exhibiting at Couture for the first time and I am so excited to see her latest designs. More about Daria below!
I started creating jewelry at a really young age. I can't remember exactly, but I remember looking for mica in the dirt and that was when I started loving sparkly things. Plus, tearing it apart was fun. I started beading and creating around the age of 10. There was a bead store near my grandmothers house. I couldn't get enough of that shop and going there became a special treat.
I'm not a very good illustrator. It's pretty basic when my ideas come out on paper. Sometimes I'll go through a bunch of ideas, but none of my sketches are perfectly illustrated. I'm too impatient for that. But, I do see in 3D, so it's easier me to get right to the bench and make the piece. And luckily I the people who work with me understand my aesthetic and can build my ideas.
So many things inspire my work. Vague, I know. Color and shape are the main things. Somehow when I see certain shapes and colors I know they are meant to be together. That is attributed a lot to the genius of gem cutters who figure out how to highlight a stone. Art is influential to my design as well. I like landscapes and still lifes as much as abstract, absurd and perfectionism. I love architectural elements - especially ironwork. I'm always interested in how things work together, how elements and angles come together. Plus, the natural growth and shapes of gems and rocks as they are formed is so interesting to me. Nature is always intriguing, but my inspiration comes from something more specific - the design part of it, the colors, the interacting shapes.
Favorite Designs: I love jewelry that is stunning and complex. Jewelry that isn't for everyone - it takes a certain person to connect with the design.
Daily jewels: I always wear stud or hoop earrings and my wedding rings. Sometimes I'll throw on a thumb ring or a necklace if I'm feeling perky. If I'm leaving my studio I'll wear big earrings and more rings or a bracelet.
Favorite artists and designers: I love old Japanese woodcuts, Miro, Dali, Giacometti, Calder, Vik Muniz and Richard Serra. Geez, I am definitely forgetting some....
Other than jewelry: I like to play tennis, sometimes golf and I love riding horses. I also like socializing, wine, entertaining, cooking, as well as complicated puzzles and games. I love painting and letting myself get lost in any kind of creation.
Currently listening to: I listen to a wide range of music depending on my mood. Often it's on when I'm sitting at the bench or playing with stones, so I need a beat. Usually EDM, chill or obscure indie stuff. The last three songs saved on my Spotify are: Sekoia by Vague Wave, I'm with Polly by City of the Sun and Stay by Chet Porter.