A 21st century trailblazer, Judith Ripka brought together the worlds of jewelry design and mass media for spectacular success. Born to a couturier who stressed the importance of finding beauty in the details, Ripka knew she wanted to help women look beautiful ever since she was a little girl poring over her mother’s jewelry. She launched her jewelry line in 1977, bolstered by her understanding of jewelry and fashion as an integrated whole — Ripka knew that just as women don new fashions every season, they also seek new jewelry to complete the look.
Ripka began by selling her designs from her home, followed by her first boutique opened in Manhasset, Long Island. Working in a signature style incorporating matte-finish gold, textured varnishes, and vibrant gem colors, Ripka’s designs struck a chord with women across the country and her business blossomed as she opened fifteen more retail locations across the U.S.
Recognizing the power of television in an ever-changing retail landscape, Ripka expanded beyond her brick-and-mortar shops into the world of QVC. She was the first female jewelry designer to host her own show on the network, becoming an industry leader with widespread recognition that includes DeBeer’s Award for Outstanding Jewelry Design and the 2017 Accessory Pioneer Award presented by the United Nations in conjunction with Women’s Entrepreneurship Day.
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