Jay Strongwater has revived the art of the bejeweled objet, believing that "beauty shouldn't just be tucked in a dresser drawer." He thinks like a jeweler whether he's working on a candlestick, a wine stopper or a clock. He knows how to set a stone so it has the right sparkle-some of his pieces glitter with thousands of Swarovski crystals-and he's always looking for ways to enrich the patterns of his enameling. "With jewelry, the clasp has to be as beautiful as the necklace," says Strongwater. "I feel the same way about everything from box hinges to picture frame stands. The back of my pieces have to be as beautiful as the front, the insides as enchanting as the outsides." Strongwater's eye for elegance has spawned a devoted cadre of collectors who include Sir Elton John, Whoopi Goldberg, Cate Blanchette, Tom Hanks and Hallie Berry. Each season he offers treasures that range from breathtaking miniature boxes to elaborate mirrors entwined with crystal-studded flowers. What's most wonderful about Strongwater's pieces is living with them. They animate even the quietest corner of a room. They demand to be touched, admired, paid attention to. "They add surprise," says Strongwater, "and the sense of delight you get when you happen upon a beautiful flower in a garden."
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