"Don't wanna wait in vain / You're the missing piece I been longing for."
Nadine Ghosn is no stranger to celebrity encounters. The US-born, Manhattan-based fine jewelry designer who hails from the Arab diaspora (her heritage is Lebanese and Brazilian), has seen her jewelry appear on the likes of Beyoncé, Ariana Grande, and Karl Lagerfeld. But this week, she caused a stir when she posted a series of photos on Instagram of herself with Drake as she helped him try on pieces from her collection, including her eye-popping ‘Lifecycle’ necklace.
What started out as a personal interest in jewelry, and with no formal training, became a life-altering journey for the young designer after her passion turned into a brand after a chance encounter with a Lebanese jewelry manufacturer on a family visit to her home country. He told her about the dying art of traditional craftsmanship as skilled artisans left their jobs due to business downturn. Her interest was piqued, spurning her to take a Management Retail program at Hermès, a tenure at Boston Consulting Group, and finally, courses at the Gemological Institute of America. After gathering the knowledge needed to launch her own line, she returned to Beirut, and legend has it, designed her first collection in one day.
Her designs are both whimsical and seriously dazzling, residing at a point where quirk and commerce overlap. Her funny ‘Veggie Burger’ ring stack is made of 260 stones, including champagne diamonds, sapphires, tsavorites, and rubies, and retails for nearly USD20,000. One of our favorites is her ‘Low Battery’ necklace, featuring an 18k rose gold setting and .18 carat ruby. Her bestsellers include a witty ‘Shut Up’ diamond earring, a ‘Pencil’ bracelet, and a bracelet made from paper clips that are hand-crafted from 18k gold.
Drake famously collects ostentatious jewelry pieces. He owns a massive custom-made ‘OVO’ pendant by Eliantte, a Ben Baller design featuring green, black, and yellow diamonds weighing 880 grams, and a USD1.9 million dollar necklace by Frank Ocean’s jewelry brand Homer (pictured below). While we don’t know if he slapped down his Visa (which is platinum, just like all of his releases), for Ghosn’s designs, we do know that his interest in her work proves that he has excellent taste.