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Christopher in Capri

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Along the Seine, Paris

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Sketching on the Ponte Vecchio

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Early morning in Paris

Although educated in gemology and manufacturing I have always been a designer at heart. After studying with Robert Ahrens, the former head designer for the famed French jeweler Van Cleef & Arpels, I began traveling and designing across Europe. My design style is characterized by clean, flowing lines and by a personal interpretation of classic motifs.

Coeur de Paris© engagement ring

Designing in Europe, unconstrained and open to the influences all around me, I am to express my own personal sense of style. I am instinctively drawn to a certain clean elegance, I am increasingly bringing more texture to my original pieces.

When I am designing for a client, I focus on conveying his or her unique design style. However, the way in which this is expressed is inevitably influenced by my experiences … I love this collaboration! It has produced some of my finest work.

Naturally, one person can’t do it all. I rely on my Design Team to make sure each project is handled professionally and with pains-taking attention to every detail. From scheduling client appointments to keeping work on a piece on track, my team ensures that each project goes smoothly from design to pick-up.

Traveling and exploring the great cities of the world has a profound influence on my design style. Experiencing the art, architecture, and culture of these unique places continues to shape and influence how I express myself artistically.

But mostly I find the inspiration for a piece in the people I’m designing it for. Their personal stories, their unique design profiles … these influences are filtered through what I have learned designing around the world and have a fundamental impact on the look of any given project.

A Team Effort

Taking a Christian Caine project from conception to completion is a team effort. Whether it’s the latest travel-inspire design or a collaboration with a client, many people each have a part to play in it’s creation. What I do wouldn’t be possible without my team.

Award-Winning Results

This designer-led, team-oriented approach paid off in the form of a recent award for the design of Milano©. With details inspired by the Duomo of Milan, Italy’s largest church, Christopher and his staff created this unique, beautiful pendant.

Design Notes

Blog entries from travels recent and past

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A Nice Surprise: Day 4—The Ring

Nice Design Studio—Today I present my designs to Rick and Deneen. I have a couple of very special additions to their ring. Family is very important to them and I was unsure if I could find an elegant way to represent that part of their relationship, I am very excited to see their reactions to [...]
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A Nice Surprise: Day 3—Explore & Design

Nice—Rick and Deneen had an amazing day exploring and sightseeing throughout Nice. They enjoyed some classic nicoise dishes such as soupe de poissons (that's fish—not poison— soup) and of course everything is paired with rosé! Rick & Deneen Explore & Christopher Designs I spent my day working from cafés before spending a long evening at [...]
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A Nice Surprise: Day 2—Deneen’s Reaction

Provence—Wow! What a day for Rick and Deneen. Did you see how touched she was when reading what Rick wrote inside her special booklet? The day was truly magical and they concluded it by watching the sunset over the vineyard. Watch Deneen's reaction to Rick's big surprise! I will be meeting with Rick and Deneen [...]
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A Nice Surprise: Day 1—The Plan

Sunday: Day 1—Rick and Deneen arrived in Nice early this morning and he and I just wrapped up our meeting here at the CC design studio. We discussed a few ideas on how to present the gift.  He decided on a gift-wrapped special booklet highlighted all of the details of Deneen's special commissioned design. Rick [...]
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Get the Picture

If you have ever been in one of our locations or visited our website, you might have wondered where all that photography comes from.  In the vast majority of cases, that's my work. Who am I? I am Christian Caine’s photographer, graphic artist, and web designer, just one of the many people who labor largely [...]
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The Changing Face of Design

When I first began designing jewelry nearly three decades ago, all layout work was done on paper or vellum with pencil, ink, and watercolor. Drafting was, at that time, not part of my skill set, and I found myself in the awkward position of being an artist without a means of expression. Knowing I needed [...]
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Our Home Town

Shepherdstown, West Virginia, is a delightfully quaint town of fewer than 2,000 residents. Shops and restaurants line German Street, the town's main thoroughfare, many occupying 18th century buildings that retain all of their two-hundred-year-old charm. Blending with the town is the venerable Shepherd University, which plays host not only to 4,000 students annually, but also [...]
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Gustav Eiffel—Engineer or Artist?

When Monsieur Eiffel’s company built Paris’ most recognizable monument for the 1889 World’s Fair, many Parisians regarded the massive iron structure with skepticism. The art community was more absolute in their opinion.  They hated it!  A petition called "Artists against the Eiffel Tower" was sent to the Minister of Works.  In part it read: “We, [...]

More Thoughts on Travel

Finding inspiration is rarely a problem for me. It’s in everything. The cathedrals of Tuscany, the canals in Venice, the Côte d’Azur, the fountains of Paris … it’s easy to be overwhelmed by all the shapes and forms and the ideas they create. My struggle comes when I must choose what to put in and what to leave out of a design. As I have grown, I have learned what’s not there can often say more than what is.

I went to Europe with the idea that changing my surroundings would change my approach to jewelry design. I discovered it was the changes those journeys made in me that made the difference. Originally, I traveled to be inspired as a designer. Today, I travel to be inspired as a person.

Here are a few photos of some of my favorite destinations from the past twenty years.

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