Leon Mege Jewelry
In the list of great jewelry designers, there are several names with worldwide recognition: Harry Winston, Fred Leighton, and Lorraine Schwartz. But as jewelry insiders know, there is one lesser-known jewelry designer who has earned his rightful place on that list: Leon Mege. A master jewelry designer and owner of one of the most exclusive custom jewelry ateliers in New York, Leon Mege is one of the jewelry industry’s best kept secrets.
Jewelry master from Russia
Born, raised and educated in Russia, Leon Mege immigrated to New York in 1987 and within days, found work as a bench jewelry in New York’s famed Diamond District. Soon after, the qualities and craftsmanship that would come to signify a Leon Mege engagement ring became apparent, and the artist was invited to work for Henry Dunay, one of the greatest jewelry designers of the time. Eventually, the demand for Leon Mege jewelry became strong enough that he was able to open his own custom jewelry business under his own name. Since 1996, Mege has personally operated both an appointment-only custom jewelry workshop in New York City as well as a small, exclusive line of designs that are retailed through a select group of online and bricks-and-mortar retailers.
About special Leon Mege jewelry
But what is so special about Leon Mege jewelry? As the artist himself would explain it, the signature of a Leon Mege ring is in its simplicity. “Minimize the appearance of the metal and spotlight the gemstones,” the designer is fond of saying. Today, Mege specializes in custom jewelry design, meaning that he works closely with each customer to fulfill his or her diamond dreams. However, no ring leaves the studio with the name “a Leon Mege ring” unless it meets the designer’s personal aesthetic and quality standards. Although the artist prefers to work with platinum, he will occasionally craft a ring in a different metal by customer request.
But this doesn’t mean that a Leon Mege ring is boring or traditional—his love of refinement and simplicity has led Mege to become a pioneer in the relatively new field of micropavé. Micropavé is a style of diamond setting in which tiny diamonds are set into very small bead settings tightly together along a metal surface, creating an illusion that the ring has been “paved” in diamonds. Micropavé is usually done by hand using a microscope, and is a difficult, labor intensive process. Many newcomers to diamond buying are often surprised at Leon Mege’s prices and the prices of of other similar designer jewelry items. However, a visit to the atelier, to see the experienced bench jewelers delicately placing each tiny diamond by hand, is enough to reassure even the most skeptical customer that a Leon Mege engagement ring is truly worth every penny.
Design for Witheflash
|Lotus Engagement Ring by Leon Mege
One fine example of the principles of Leon Mege jewelry design is the Lotus, a Leon Mege engagement ring design created exclusively for Whiteflash, one of the few retailers to carry his designs. The Lotus is a delicate, refined and yet whimsical halo engagement ring design that surrounds the center stone of the customer’s choosing with diamond-studded petals, creating the appearance of the design’s namesake flower. Beneath the center stone, small yellow gold leaves accented with diamonds complete the lotus-like appearance, while adding a subtle touch of contrast and unexpected luxury.
Bridal jewelry by Leon Mege
|Lotus Halo Engagement Ring
Although Leon Mege is primarily a designer of bridal jewelry, he doesn’t only create engagement rings. In fact, the designer often says that the true test of a jewelry designer’s skill comes from the pure and utter simplicity of the wedding band. A designer who can create a beautiful, but memorable, wedding band, is truly a master of the art. And of course, this is true of the Leon Mege ring—whether it is a wedding band, an eternity, band, or a right hand ring. For example, one favorite design involves a row of tiny yellow diamonds set closely on a yellow gold band, creating the look of a sparkling gold paved surface. Another standout wedding band involved three extremely narrow bands set flush against each other.
For those who choose not to have a ring custom designed by Leon Mege himself, there are other options. A select number of retailers do carry Leon Mege ring designs, and since these are not handcrafted by the designer himself, they can be a more affordable version of the same quality, care and creativity that are signatures of Leon Mege himself.
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