Frances Javier, MD, first designed a piece of jewelry 10 years ago, when she created a 25th anniversary ring for her mother.
“I researched diamonds as if it were a thesis and learned how to get the best quality stone — far beyond the four C’s — for a given budget without overpaying the huge retail markup,” she said.
Javier, a second-year resident in the Albert J. Solnit Integrated Adult/Child Psychiatry training program, has focused on custom, one-of-a-kind jewelry ever since.
Last year, Javier launched Frances Javier Designs, an online jewelry company that has turned her passion project into a business to serve a broader audience.
“I realized I could help others attain the pieces they have always dreamed of within their target budgets,” she said.
Javier has spent 10 years honing her fine jewelry experience, as well as dedicating herself to her medical education and training. It’s that combined experience that forms the foundation of Frances Javier Designs.
“I understand the time and effort poured in by my colleagues in medicine, as well as fellow professionals in other fields, to become successful,” she said. “I feel that our line of work presents unique demands that only those who live it can fully appreciate. I bridge the creative and technical aspects of design and I wish to be the trusted source for my peers, whose needs are often overlooked by traditional jewelry stores.”
Javier said while design might seem purely creative, there are highly technical components to the process. Designing the perfect piece requires that she factor each stone’s dimensions, metal thickness, and more to achieve the right proportions and balance of aesthetics with structural integrity.
The design process also utilizes her skills as a psychiatrist, she said.
“Being a good listener and being attuned to a person’s emotions allow me to get a good sense of the client’s overall feel and vision for the piece,” Javier said.
“I believe that my calling to promote mental health and well-being as a psychiatrist transcends into my desire to make affordable luxuries more accessible, as well as provide a supportive and stress-free jewelry buying experience,” Javier said. “Just as doctors are trained to take a patient-centered approach in health care, I provide a client-centered approach in my business practice, instead of profit-driven tactics rampant in the jewelry industry. I apply the same work ethic on my creative projects that allow me to thrive in my daily clinical practice where honesty, professionalism, communication and attention to detail are key.”
Each piece begins with the center stone. Javier handpicks high quality stones based on each client’s request. After selecting the center stone, Javier creates designs that celebrate and highlight the precious gemstones, while adding personalized touches for the wearer, such as a butterfly on the back of an earring, or a loved one’s initial on the ring gallery.
“That’s the beauty of bespoke jewelry — each piece is inspired by each individual.”
“I strongly believe that work appropriate jewelry does not mean boring,” she said. “It can be subtle yet striking. Design and fine jewelry tend to focus on aesthetics. And while I definitely want to highlight the beauty of every piece that I create, I also keep the wearer in mind. Depending on each client’s activity and lifestyle, each piece needs to have the practicality and structural integrity that can withstand daily wear and last more than a lifetime, to become a future heirloom.”
Consultations typically take place on evenings and weekends that Javier is not on call, to accommodate clients who work regular business hours. The behind-the-scenes work of design and creation happens whenever inspiration strikes. And every few weeks, Javier travels to New York to source stones and meet with the production team.
Javier said her goals for the future include continuing to provide superior quality investment pieces, impeccable craftsmanship, and honest pricing. She also hopes to maintain her online-based small business model, while expanding her reach to “more effectively help professionals dress for success, maximizing style without sacrificing comfort.”
She is in the process of creating a line of ready to wear pieces, as well as custom projects featuring rare fancy colored diamonds (including pink, yellow and amber)! Details will be announced on Instagram when they are available.
For bespoke jewelry consultations, email firstname.lastname@example.org. Visit FrancesJavierDesigns.com or find @francesjavierdesigns on Instagram for more information, including a gallery of projects.