The New York-born designer is known for her wearable jewellery that looks dangerous and dramatic
Tell us about the first jewellery piece you designed.
It was a medallion, which was inspired by the only piece of jewellery my grandparents brought from Cuba. During the revolution, everything of value—especially gold— was confiscated by the government. My grandfather had a little medallion, which he would hang from his belt, and it went unnoticed. I worked it into a pendant.
What do you love about remodelling jewellery?
We only live one life. If a piece is dated or doesn’t suit you right now, it’s better to rework it into something you will wear. There’s no point having it sit in a safe.
Which piece have you most enjoyed remodelling?
The Honey necklace, which I made for myself. I reset my grandmother’s ring, which sat in my safe for 15 years, and now I never take it off.
If you could dress anyone, who would it be?
Jackie O. I know she is famous for her American elegance, but I’d love to see her a little sexier. I’d also just love to chat with her.
What’s your favourite time period?
I love everything about the 1920s and ’30s—art deco never goes out of style.