You may not know it, but jewelry designer Nina Runsdorf is the reason why you have some of your most special pieces of jewelry. In 2005, Runsdorf launched her namesake line with what would become her eponymous ring, the Flip Ring. In 2009, she amped up the innovation and was the first in the U.S. to start using sliced diamonds—laser-cut slivers of diamonds—in her designs.
It all started at the age of 11, when her mother put in a jewelry bench in their farmhouse as a way for Runsdorf to nurture her creativity and keep herself busy. It sparked an interest and love for jewelry design, and after stints at Ralph Lauren, Banana Republic, Wanthe, and her late husband’s father’s diamond business, the designer knew she was ready to launch her line. Her designs went global quickly. Exhibit A: Oprah Winfrey was spotted wearing an opal Flip Ring at the Royal Wedding just this past May.
Fun fact: Runsdorf is also an art aficionado. The designer’s Upper East Side home is practically dripping in art by the likes of Basquiat, Nir Hod, and Richard Prince, making it the perfect backdrop for us to line up her massive Hermès collection and hang up printed and pleated Gucci dresses. A gargantuan Paula Hayes terrarium acted as the perfect prop to lean a pair of green velvet Gianvito Rossi shoes on, while a bronzed statue of a woman delicately held up a sparkling, gemstone-filled namesake necklace. Runsdorf herself, draped in old Céline as a homage to Phoebe Philo, had a vivacious personality that matched her bright closet. To be honest, we’re simply waiting for the day where we (hopefully) learn how to be even half as chic as her.