Designer and CEO
Katharine James is beloved by brides, which stems from the Los Angeles-based jewelry designer’s experience and true passion. After studying fashion merchandising at Brooks College, Katharine landed a job at the famed specialty store I. Magnin’s flagship in San Francisco. Developing an expertise in luxury-brand beauty and cosmetics, she met industry luminaries like Karl Lagerfeld and Evelyn Lauder, and used her merchandising talent to further the vision of the multi-million-dollar grossing department. But it was the publishing of the elaborate tome Martha Stewart Weddings that marked a crucial turning point for Katharine, a lover and collector of books. With the concept of the dream wedding now attainable for everyone, Katharine delved into wedding publications and developed an affinity for the brides breaking from tradition to express their unique style.
Entering the luxury jewelry market, Katharine accepted a position at Tiffany & Co. in Beverly Hills, where she worked for two years until leaving to help her mentor, jewelry designer Michael B., launch his first bridal collection. After nine years as vice president of marketing and sales at Michael B., during which time she skillfully positioned the profitable bridal brand, Katharine was ready to branch out on her own.
In 2005, she launched Katharine James with just one piece, the Sweet Juliet engagement ring, which was an instant success. Her line has since grown to include the exquisite Juliet’s Love®, Bella’s Love® and Bouquet signature collections, and continues to expand and evolve. Katharine is a meticulous designer who is intricately involved in every aspect of the process, from initial sketches to the final fitting on a bride’s finger. She is continually inspired by her sophisticated clients and their romantic dream weddings. As Katharine stated in an interview with The Jewelry Book, “Anything luxurious begins and ends as a labor of love.”