While we love a good fashion trend, seeing multiple people wearing the exact same item is the best way to ensure we'll never buy it. The jacket that our BFF, coworker, and cousin all own? Um, we'll be going a different route, thanks. The heels that suddenly seem to be all over our Instagram? Yeah...it's going to be a no from us.
So when we come across a site that sells stunning pieces we've never seen before, we're quick to click around, and possibly add to cart. We'd rather spend our money on something unique — and that's exactly where Pietra comes into play.
The fairly new site is the leading marketplace for fine jewelry brands, connecting consumers with designers from around the world. Not only are you able shop stuff you won't find anywhere else, but there's also the option to easily (easily!) work with creators through a special portal, customizing pieces for yourself and loved ones.
"The idea of Pietra actually started in a cafeteria," Ronak Trivedi, the company's co-founder and CEO, explained to InStyle over the phone. "I was talking to my friend who was looking for a custom engagement ring for his wife, because she had said, ‘Look, I don't want something that's traditional; I want something unique that I can be proud about wearing every single day of my life.’ So, he asked us, ‘Does anyone know someone that can do this?’ And we all looked at each other like, ‘Not really...’ In 2019, that seems like a really weird way to go about spending $28,000."
Trivedi set out to solve the problem — even taking a break from his job at Uber — and discovered there wasn't a place where both small and celeb-loved jewelry brands could be accessed.
"What started as a very small idea around custom-designed engagement rings has actually turned into this much larger global marketplace," he said. "We have jewelry designers from all over the world, and Pietra becomes the place where we can go and we can build a community. People want to discover who these people are, hear their story, and get a piece of jewelry that's unique and matches their style."
Trivedi is counting on the fact that jewelry is going to become the new sneakers — especially since global fine jewelry sales are expected to hit $250 billion by 2020.
"Ten years ago, shoes were just part of a fashion website," he explained. "Right now, we are going through an evolution of jewelry and accessories. It’s one of the fastest growing segments."
Along with investors — such as model Joan Smalls, Will Smith, and Robert Downey Jr. — Pietra's director of operations & marketing, Leigh Evenson, agrees.
"Jewelry deserves its own space," she told us. "It’s being sold on sites that are meant to sell shoes, and clothes, and bags, and other types of accessories. It’s about making sure that it does have its own space on the internet, where people can express their creativity and be given something that's a little more unique. There’s more of an emotional connection behind [jewelry]; it’s different. You can't just lump it in with anything else, and it really just deserves its own arena to be expressed through."
Pietra's selection ranges from a few hundred dollars to over $200,000 (for an 18 karat gold and diamond necklace), and it's definitely worth checking out, ASAP.