“I’m all about mixing and layering, so I recommend everybody to carry another necklace in their purse at all times — you never know what the day brings!” says the German-born jewelry designer Gabriele Frantzen.
Her fabulous creations channel old world glamour but with modern twists. Take the tasseled Disco Ball sautoir, loosely inspired by the movie “The Artist,” which combines Art Deco with fresh colors and incorporates neon-colored Czech glass beads and crystals. Frantzen’s mixed media Chunky Chain choker, made from entwining ropes of chains and pearls, carries a bold brass lion’s head pendant. Her brown-tone Sundial necklace is great for the beach, brings wooden beads and animal-print Italian links together with round crystal ornaments resembling vintage brooches.
As a fashion industry veteran and former retailer, Frantzen, who has been making her own jewelry creations for years, decided to launch her brand two years ago after frequently being stopped in the street or at parties by strangers wanting to know about her jewelry. She felt there was a niche for fashion necklaces that made a statement in terms of design and quality, but didn’t cost the earth. “I started doing jewelry because I couldn’t find what I wanted to wear and I didn’t want to spend over $1,500 for a fashion necklace,” says the designer. Based between New York and Munich, Frantzen works with a cornucopia of materials from across the globe, such as pearls, colored Czech glass, Swarovski crystals, Japanese silk and nickel-free chains. Each piece is handmade in New York.