Texas-born Lera Lee, who now resides in Fort Worth with her husband and three children, has been creating luxury accessories for a discerning global clientele for over a decade. An expert in product development, Lera admits she basically fell into the world of fine jewels in 2001 while living in Italy.
“While in Florence, I was pregnant with our third child and I was desperate for a certain designer ring—a baby gift so to speak. That is when the light went off. I knew that with all the wonderful craftsmen in Florence, I could source the stones and have a similar ring made. It worked and that’s how it started...”
Lee soon joined forces with her friend Camilla Raggi de Marini to create Lera de Marini in Florence. Fast forward to 2010, Lee who had moved back to the U.S., decided to launch her own company Lera Lee Fine Jewelry. The collection is made up of earrings, rings, necklaces, and bracelets that blend 18 carat yellow, rose and white gold with a mix of precious and semi-precious stones. We love the simple sophistication this combination brings to pieces like the brightly colored Button Earrings and the Chalcedony Chain necklace.
Her appreciation of Italian artistry complements her love for the beauty and hues found in nature. She comments, “the colors of the outdoors—skiing the Dolomites, biking through Tuscany, hunting in South Texas, walking on the beach at sunset...I’m inspired by all of these shades.”
Today, all of Lera Lee's collections are still hand-crafted by jewelry artisans in her Florence workshop. When asked why she still insists on producing all of her designs in Italy, she simply says, “Why? Because they care. My artisans have been working with me for 11 years and their craftsmanship is superior. We don't cut corners or use less gold or flimsy closures. Everything is quality. It might cost a little more, but it’s worth it!”
What’s new at Lera Lee Fine Jewelry? Boasts Lee, “We have recently created custom 18 carat gold bracelets that can accommodate up to 30 letters. I have the names of my three children separated by diamonds. I wear it all the time!” Lee’s collections are classic, that easily transition from day to evening, appealing to today’s active, stylish and confident woman. She explains, “I have clients that play tennis, go to lunch and then a cocktail party, all in the same jewelry.”
Lee’s designs have been carried at Saks Fifth Avenue, Fred Segal and Neiman Marcus, and featured in top fashion and design publications and on network television shows, adorned by Samantha Harris of Dancing with the Stars and Giuliana Rancic of E! News. Lee’s main focus, however, is on the everyday women who make her jewelry sparkle and shine in its versatility and wearability. Prices can range from $1,300 to $30,000, so contact Lera Lee Fine Jewelry or visit LeraLeeJewelry.com to learn more.
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