08 A La Mode
IT’S BEEN A FEW YEARS since we’ve heard “tweed jackets” and “Boston” mentioned in the same sentence, and to this we respond, “Finally!” It’s about time this city moves beyond its reputation for stuffy fashion. Not only have local designers shaped Boston’s
Three local designers set trends in this town.
Whether it’s a rough-hewn cuff or a dainty lariat, jewelry designer Sophie
Hughes Stokes crafts pieces that demand attention. She skillfully wields an oldschool hammer and torch until the rough edges and unique textures fall between rugged and refined, feminine and masculine. Metal bends to her will, and gems are carefully placed.
Stokes’ stunning work has been featured in InStyle, Elle, and Harper’s Bazaar. But it’s also the manner in which she fields her materials that’s just as beautiful as the items they create.
As a member of Ethical Metalsmiths, she values social and environmental responsibility. Translation: Stokes takes pride in creating pieces without unnecessary harm to miners or the environment.
She learned her technique at her high school in Maine, and then studied at Mass Art for a BFA in Metalsmithing. Today, her South End atelier Ore is where she does her dirty work.
“I love working with 18k royal yellow gold. It’s alloyed to make this really rich, unique color, with cooler undertones than peachy-colored standard yellow, but a bit warmer than green gold,” she says. “It moves like butter under my hammer, yet is incredibly durable over time. I imagine it’s what Cleopatra’s jewelry would have looked like.”
For Stokes, sustainable means making jewelry using recycled metals and reclaimed stones whenever possible. “It’s little known that 20 tons of Earth have to be moved to mine the gold for a single wedding band,” she says. Stokes herself recently got married. “My then-fiancé came to the studio with me, and we forged our bands together.” Available: Ore Jewelry, 80 Darmouth St., 617.247.7426