Judith Ripka by Rossana Hu

The Jie collection reimagines traditional Chinese design through a contemporary aesthetic. A collaboration with award-wining architect Rossana Hu, it interplays classical artisanship with the desires and sensibility of a modern woman.

In Chinese, "JIE" 结 translates to "the knot", an auspicious notion of bonding. The collection expresses an elevation of form and material. It draws inspiration from the button loop of garments from Qin dynasty China—a symbol of infinite possibilities cast in sterling silver.



Rossana Hu’s exclusive collection for Judith Ripka is the third in our series with women artists and designers, setting the tone for a groundbreaking, multidisciplinary look at jewelry’s expressive potential. Each collection in this series reimagines jewelry through a unique aesthetic lens, imbuing precious metals and stones with the originality of the artists who helped designed them.


What was your inspiration when designing this collection?

Starting from the inception of the project, my design objective is to extract the essence of traditional Chinese aesthetics and to frame it in a modern expression for jewelry. The Chinese button is regarded as miniature sculptures on traditional Chinese clothing. I traced the origin of Chinese button back to the one-line button from Qin dynasty. The double-sided button was then separated and re-combined into a loop to form a single unit, which also signifies the infinite possibilities this collection could bring.

What drew you to architecture? What was your journey?

I really struggled during my teenage years with not knowing what I wanted to do, but very early on I knew I loved the creative field. However, I am also quite realistic and I come from a Chinese family, always questioned by your parents asking ‘how are you going to pay the bills?” I was also very academically driven so I had considered maybe going to law school, engineering school, and sort of by chance I entered undergraduate as an architecture major and the very first studio, I just loved it, and I have been involved in architecture since.

How do you view the relationship between architecture and jewelry?

I think about design as an encompassing profession, just like the Seccionist movement when architects, interiors, product designers, artists, and craftsmen work together as a whole as opposed to being a separate entity. I just do what I love as a designer, it can be anything—architecture, jewelry, teapot and so on.

What did jewelry mean to you growing up? What about now?

Jewelry could be with people for a longer period of time—I know this when I was young. But gradually I realize those things that are staying with you will essentially influence your attitude towards life and become part of your identity.

What drew you to working with Judith Ripka?

Judith Ripka is a fine jewelry brand with a long history, always seeking opportunities to work with women artists and designers for inspirations in different fields. As a practice, my approach to design is interdisciplinary, and I enjoy working with people holding the same belief.

How did the jewelry change or evolve during the design process?

I did a lot of research on traditional Chinese button at the initial stage, and was impressed by the one-line button from Qin Dynasty. It not only marks the beginning of Chinese button but also exemplifies the most modern type. I tried to simplify the structure into two elements and restructured them to form a single loop unit. The interesting thing is that, this unit is repeatable, which means it could become any type of jewelry—rings, earrings, bracelets, and necklaces.

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