Ranjana Khan’s jewelry is like a thick, beautiful love story you never want to end. There are elements of surprise, colorful details and it’s perfectly crafted to stand the test of time. The India-born designer has taken the bold embellishments from her native land to her jewelry designs, which are now all over the world. With lines for Neiman Marcus, another for HSN.com and a one time collaboration with The Limited, Khan has been able to reach a diverse audience while staying true to her signature style. She makes her own rules and it’s no surprise her original designs have attracted some equally one of a kind women such as Michelle Obama and Taylor Swift.
Khan phoned me from Miami Beach to talk about her latest collection, her upcoming appearance at Neiman Marcus in Boca Raton June 8 and what it’s like having the First Lady as a fan of your line. “Mrs. Obama wears a lot of my pieces,” Khan said. “Her stylist and I work together. She has nine pieces from my new collection. I’m so flattered she likes what I design because she has such impeccable style. It’s wonderful to be on her radar.”
At her appearance in Boca Raton, Khan will show her spring collection to customers. “Earrings are really important this season. Big statement necklaces in delicious colors are also big right now,” Khan said. “I’m using plexiglass and semi-precious stones.”
Khan, who has a residence in Miami and often hangs out at Soho House, finds inspiration for her pieces on the South Florida sand. “The girls in Miami can wear a bunch of colors and somehow get away with it,” Khan said. “Sometimes it’s plaid and florals. There are all these textures. My philosophy is mix it up!”
With such an impressive client base already, it’s hard to believe Khan’s line is only three and a half years old. “I really want to build on the Ranjana Khan label,” she added. “I use very different materials and techniques. I want to expand to do sunglasses at some point.”
Sunglasses are another huge passion for Khan who is married to Naeem Khan, whose gorgeous gowns have appeared on Carrie Underwood, Eva Longoria, Beyonce and the First Lady. She has an impressive collection of vintage Emilio Pucci, Emmanuelle Khanh and Christian Dior frames. “I have 60 pairs of vintage prescription sunglasses. I’m always asked about them,” Khan said. “I wear my tinted sunglasses at night. It’s a vanity thing. It all started about seven years ago when I was home sick in bed and my husband would bring me a new pair every day to open.”
As for her jewelry line, Khan has a studio, but her muse is the world. “The hand-sewn embroidery and materials I use makes my jewelry very different,” Khan explained. “I go to vintage stores on Rhode Island to find materials for my pieces. I love finding the perfect piece of plexiglass and a handsome, strong chain. Sometimes I use a lot of color in pieces and other times, I won’t use any. I love putting the unexpected together.”
Khan also finds inspiration at flea markets around the world. “Life is so wonderful. I love traveling with my friends and I love going to flea markets in Paris, India and Istanbul,” Khan explained. “You can see old and new things. We’re going to Hawaii next week where I’m so inspired by the locals at the farmer’s markets making wonderful necklaces out of shells.”
Contact Joanie Cox at email@example.com or follow her tweets at Twitter.com/joaniecox.