About Us                                Our Gem Shop               Custom Design Info

Gems and Jewelry Design by Karen Nottonson

About me:
Although I am an engineer/materials scientist by training (actually an M.I.T. grad and a bona fide Geek); I have loved gems and jewelry ever since I was little. In 1983 I decided to pursue my dream and go into business for myself. After getting my Graduate Gemologist Diploma; I opened Harper & Faye Jewelers in Boston's Financial District. I've been designing original and custom fine jewelry full-time ever since, and I love it!

My business principles:
1) Trust. It is very important to me that someone who is even a complete newbie feel they can buy with confidence; that they are getting exactly what’s described! I have over 40 years experience, my own gemological equipment, and a known and trusted supply chain to make sure this happens. I stand behind what I sell, and am happy to answer your questions.

2) Enjoyment and education. Each item in this store was chosen for its ability to please and surprise, not just impress!  Browsing this store should be fun:  A voyage of discovery, introducing you to new gems and ways of using them.  One client said that Harper & Faye is the “third place” – there’s work, home, and “the third place” where you go to relax!

3) Accessibility. I want people to be able to buy, own, wear, and enjoy the real thing rather than just clip photos off the internet!  So, without resorting to gimmicky "sale prices",  I seek out gemstones and jewelry which are truly reasonable for the quality offered.

4) Jewelry you can actually wear. Many of my clients are women in business and the professions, who love gems but want to wear their treasures outside of the safe deposit vault. You'll find my designs answer this challenge- they use rich materials and striking colors, but are approachable and simple; flattering both the gem and the wearer. I welcome custom design work, too.

Shop for loose gems, fine to fun!

Gem lovers, rejoice!  You've found your place.  Start your custom jewel (or add to your stash) with an extraordinary loose gemstone from our large collection. Specializing in rare, unusual and hard-to-find gems, each hand-picked for quality, value, and authenticity you can trust. Many are certified, all are guaranteed.   Browse, learn, and let your imagination loose!   Featuring:  

 * Brazilian Paraiba Tourmaline (glowing neon blue!)
 * Fine Opals
 * Natural Burmese Jadeite
 * Fancy Color Sapphire (including Montana sapphire)
...and all the gems you know and love, too.  And pearls.  Lots and lots of pearls!

Try our (awesome) gem-finding service!

Have you been looking FOREVER for a particular stone, tramping from store to store and spending hours searching online- and no one seems to have it?     
  * A "bucket list" center for a ring (like a 10ct. heart-shaped pink sapphire).    
  * Earrings to match a pendant, or vice versa.    
  * Replacing missing stones in an heirloom piece.   
 * A superb strand of gem-quality pearls.    
 *  That special diamond.

Problem solved! I attend a two major gem trade shows annually, with literally thousands of suppliers from around the world.  If it exists in the gem world, it's there, and I will find it.  Some clients have been searching for years- why wait?  Call the store at 617-330-1943 or email me, and let's discuss how this all works! (Don't worry, it's risk-free!)

Custom Design:  A Most Rewarding Experience!
The custom design process isn't intimidating.  You only need a basic idea to get started, then it's my job to imagine the possibilities. And, it's easy and fun.

We'll start with a clean piece of paper, and pay close attention to what your wishes are. Then creativity and sensitivity combine to design a piece that (although it's never been made before) is just what you were looking for!

Clients often remark that they would never have imagined the designs I show them, which should be the whole point of engaging a creative professional- you will be surprised and pleased.

I design in all metals, including platinum and 22 Karat gold, and draw on a variety of styles and techniques from ancient to modern. We have a fascinating collection of rare and unusual stones to work with, plus the resources to find any colored gem or diamond you may need for your dream piece, no matter how scarce or hard-to-find. I'm also happy to design around stones or jewelry you already own (in store only).

Experience:  This isn't my first rodeo!  :-) I've done some very special pieces in my nearly 40 years in business, including the cross worn by the former Archbishop of Edinburgh in Scotland; commissions for local and national organizations and charities; and over 2000 custom designs for private clients.

Please visit our GALLERY page, to see a small sample of custom jewelry pieces designed for clients in the past. This will give you a better idea of the creative diversity found in my custom designs, and I can do the same for you!

Karen Nottonson S.B., S.M., G.G.

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