Jewelry is in Caroline Ballou's blood. Since 1886, four generations of the Ballou family have made their company one of Rhode Island's most important manufacturers of fine jewelry. As a young designer, Caroline Ballou took a different course. After receiving her MFA, she opened her own studio, producing art jewelry for galleries, hosting private shows with limited edition pieces.
The people of Ghana and the Cote d'Ivoire live close to the earth; their ceremonial body ornamentation evokes organic origins - leaf, vine, water, thatch. After working with Crossroads Africa, I came home and grabbed a hammer. All that's gold does not necessarily glitter.
18K Soft Hammered Finish Bracelet w/ 3.5mm
Amethyst, Blue Topaz, Peridot, and Citrine
As the Design Director for the family company, Caroline's career took on a new dimension when she began to design her own line. She combined her contemporary visions with B. A. Ballou's history of high quality standards and infinite technical expertise. She gave life to the fifth generation of design innovation in the well respected jewelry manufacturing company, and has received several design awards.
Malaspina Glacier Pendant
Soft Hammered Finish Pendant with 3.5mm Peridot
Most of the world's fresh water is on ice, stored in glaciers. The largest piedmont glacier on earth is in Alaska. From space, it bears an uncanny resemblance to the swirly spirals I've been drawing since preschool. I can't wait to see if my tears freeze before they hit the ground.
Caroline creates her fine jewelry collection with a cross-cultural edge, the sophisticated product of worldwide influences filtered through the sensibility of a thoroughly contemporary artist. Combining rich colors, textures, rhythms, symbols and patterns, she develops a broad mix of necklaces, cuffs, bracelets, rings and earrings. A bit of history is infused into each piece as it is Caroline's interpretation of decorative traditions brought forth from many different cultures.
Highland Cobblestone Ring
18k Soft Finish w/ Polished Edge Ring with Diamond Accent
Working in sterling silver and 18k gold, Caroline adds excitement with semi precious gemstones, some being exclusively designed and cut for fine quality and distinction. Diamonds and pearls add a strong yet feminine elegance. Textures in sterling silver are darkened to illuminate the richly incised forms. Gold becomes an art form, sleek and polished, hammered and matte, each piece with a warm glow. Intriguing surface treatments, combinations of precious metals, and contemporary stones and beads are used in illustrating a casual elegance that is Caroline Ballou.
The collections are for the woman seeking individuality; from modern classics with a twist to the refined adaptations of trends. Touchable and wearable, the entire collection moves easily from day to evening, adding pizzazz to business wear and a touch of exclusive luxury to weekend and dinner fashions. Wearing a Caroline Ballou feels like wearing confidence.
As an artist, I'm observant by nature. And yet, there's something about setting foot on foreign soil that really sharpens the senses. My footprints vanish in a moment, but the textures and colors and shapes of a place take root in my soul.
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