Events & Awards

MJSA Announces Winner of Responsibly Sourced Design Competition

Events & AwardsDec 04, 2020

MJSA Announces Winner of Responsibly Sourced Design Competition

The designs had to incorporate stones from the challenge’s sponsor, Columbia Gem House.

Here, Emily Kuvin’s winning design rendering for the 2020 MJSA Responsibly Sourced Design Challenge.

New York—Emily Kuvin is the winner of the 2020 MJSA Responsibly Sourced Design Challenge.

MJSA’s annual competition asks designers to render a piece for a fictional client, reflecting her background and interests.

This year, the trade organization’s “client” was a mother and college professor, whose children wanted a piece of jewelry to commemorate her gaining U.S. citizenship.

Another competition stipulation was incorporation of several responsibly sourced gemstones from sponsor Columbia Gem House, based in Vancouver, Washington, which focuses on building mine-to-market supply chains for ethically sourced stones.

New York City-based Kuvin rose to the occasion with a rendering of a 14-karat yellow gold mesh necklace featuring a large 26 mm by 24 mm Mexican mabe pearl, accented with flush-set Montana sapphire melee in a variety of colors from Columbia Gem House.

Emily Kuvin
“The pearl represents Maria’s Mexican heritage and birth family, and anchors the piece,” Kuvin explained of her winning design, “just as her strength anchors her family.”

“The sapphires to the left of the pearl are her three children … while the nine sapphires joyously emanating to the right stand for the love, beauty, excitement and knowledge Maria puts forth into family and the world.”

Kuvin went on to explain she chose gold mesh to honor the fictional client’s hometown, where her father was a fisherman, as well as the “wide net that Maria has cast” in her personal and professional life.

Though she’s designed jewelry since high school, Kuvin has degrees in journalism and law and worked as a TV news anchor, reporter and legal counsel before opening her own studio, Emily Kuvin Jewelry, in New York City.

Kuvin was one of nine designers to enter the competition.

See all the entries at

Ashley Davisis the senior editor, fashion at National Jeweler, covering all things related to design, style and trends.

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