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Ana-Katarina Vinkler-Petrovic has a background worthy of an epic novel. Born in Boston to parents from Yugoslavia and Slovenia, Ana-Katarina decided to travel to Belgrade to report on the Balkans war while a university student in the early 90’s and undertook humanitarian work on her return to the US. But Ana-Katarina’s direction changed in 2007, when she embarked on jewellery design, with her depth of experience informing her collections. “I keep a visual lexicon in my consciousness created from my background, history, travels, passions, and experiences,” says Ana-Katarina. “When I design, this internal library opens to bring forth the inspirations for my jewellery.”
And Ana-Katarina’s jewellery fuses timeless, talismanic inspirations with the designer’s contemporary touch. Her Eye Love collection spotlights cameos carved as an eye in blue agate, taking their cues from 18th Century lover’s eye jewellery, a beautiful – and clandestine – way of keeping one’s loved one close. Ana-Katarina’s modern take on these mementos are fashioned as rings and pendants in 18k yellow gold and set with the cameo eyes, embellished with sapphires and diamonds. Meanwhile, her Cloud 9 and Sea of Love collections take the natural world as their touchstone, with their organic forms fashioned from sustainably-farmed pearls and Brazilian aquamarines.
Indeed, creating ethically-minded jewellery is integral to Ana-Katarina’s work. She crafts her designs using reclaimed, recycled, and fair trade precious metals and stones, and is a member of the Ethical Metalsmiths and American Gem Trade Association. And given her experiences on the frontline, Ana-Katarina also fuses her work with a political point of view. In 2018 Ana-Katarina launched her Iconic Women campaign, as a reaction to “America’s current socio-political climate,” the designer says. The campaign spotlights images of inspiring women of different ages who use “their warrior spirit to create positive changes in their communities and the world,” Ana-Katarina say, with all the women wearing the designer’s beautiful and thought-provoking jewellery designs.