Jewelry has always been alluring for its beauty. No secret there. But jewelry has surprisingly also held a few secrets of its own. In the 16th century, poison rings were a popular way to discretely hide arsenic or other toxic substances, which could be slipped into your enemy’s drink. On a more positive note, the cherished locket has long contained photos of loved ones. And let’s not forget jewelry for beauty – perfume, blush, even lipstick has been cleverly disguised in glittery baubles, and is worn by today’s fashionistas. So it’s not surprising that technology would catch up. Last year produced a blinking ring created to send a visual signal, a la a flashing light, to let you know you had a call on your cell. For the more hardcore, 2014 also became the year of the smart watch. Created to multitask like your phone, but worn on your wrist, it was all gadget lovers could talk about. But there was a catch – the watch wasn’t really desired, nor designed well for females.
“Internationally, 65 percent of the luxury watch market is for men’s fine watches, but when asked, 63 percent of women in the US market said they never wear a watch, which is ironic because the demographic that would benefit most from smart technology is women,” said Christopher Grayson, creator of the Smart Jewel, which was unveiled mid-February at the Lyons Wier Gallery in Chelsea. “Men can slip their phones into their pockets, but women usually put them in their purse, and often miss a call or text. What I’m doing is taking a smart watch and putting it into a form factor that is more pleasing to a female audience.”
And pleasing it is. It’s bling city – and beautifully so. Stunningly designed, the three-inch diamond Smart Jewel can be worn numerous ways — on a necklace as a pendant, as a brooch or clipped to a handbag — and it features a small display for a person to get alerts, notifications and read texts – think the font size of the date on your iPhone.
Christopher, who was born in Memphis and moved to New York in 1994, has been obsessed with the wearable space for years. He came to his highly technical concept by drawing on skills he fine-tuned during his advertising and marketing days, where he focused largely on premium brands and technology. “The feature most used in wearables is push notification as the average smart phone user checks their smart phone 110 times a day,” he said. “Since the fashion accessory market leans towards women, it’s a better business practice to approach this market first, as women are going to lead in this space. And if the wearables market is going to grow, women are going to be the ones to take it there.”
Christopher also mentioned that since his technology offers more options as opposed to a wearable device that merely flashes, “one is less likely to miss a call plus you’re able to read what someone is texting you,” he added. “You’re able to get a deeper, richer piece of information.”
One giant leap for technology, one more accessory that glitters for the bedazzled. Presently, a limited number of Smart Jewels are available at the Chelsea gallery or on Christopher’s web site, www.giganti.co, for $1,100.