Sleek. Simple. Sophisticated.

It’s Zen Style – jewelry that has clean lines and uncomplicated shapes. There’s little in the way of ornamentation and embellishment. Its beauty comes from artful construction and the pairing of contrasting shapes and colors.

Erik Stewart’s Zen ring captures the spirit of the style. It has a simple, austere beauty that speaks of peace.

Erik Stewart’s Zen ring captures the spirit of the style. It has a simple, austere beauty that speaks of peace.

Many people are attracted to this style of jewelry because it’s a visual antidote to the fast pace of modern life – a wearable piece of peace. And that’s something that crosses international boundaries. Whether you’re in New York, Hong Kong, Buenos Aries, Beijing, Mumbai or Rome, the hustle and bustle of modern life creates a natural draw to visual serenity.

This “Omega Round” ring, features a round brilliant diamond, tension set in platinum, by Steven Kretchmer is an example of Zen design. Simple shapes are used to make something beautiful…organic…fluid. Courtesy of Steven Kretchmer.

This “Omega Round” ring, features a round brilliant diamond, tension set in platinum, by Steven Kretchmer is an example of Zen design. Simple shapes are used to make something beautiful…organic…fluid. Courtesy of Steven Kretchmer.

Zen Style owes its inspiration to traditional Japanese art. If you really want to appreciate this style of design, you have to understand where it first flowered.

Wabi (simple, austere beauty) is a key design element in Japanese art. Wabi can be described as understated elegance – design that has little in the way of flourish and that celebrates the unadorned.

The appeal of John Walsh’s Zen Bundle brooch comes from the artful selection and placement of the materials. Walsh has taken a simple object, a river stone, and set it in a silver bezel mounting, with a bundle of sticks made of silver and a simple pearl adornment, showcasing? Emphasizing? Highlighting? its natural beauty.

The appeal of John Walsh’s Zen Bundle brooch comes from the artful selection and placement of the materials. Walsh has taken a simple object, a river stone, and set it in a silver bezel mounting, with a bundle of sticks made of silver and a simple pearl adornment, showcasing? Emphasizing? Highlighting? its natural beauty.

Sabi (“rustic patina”), another key Japanese design principle and usually linked to the concept of Wabi, , describes how objects can grow more beautiful with the passing of time. Metal that has tarnished or rusted, wood that has aged, and colors that have faded are all examples of Sabi.

Sabi is alive in contemporary jewelry. This handmade necklace designed by ChiGallery has a weathered look achieved by a special glazing technique.

Zen Style is timeless, beautiful, and speaks to our desire for tranquility and peace. You can see examples of this sensibility across the centuries in one form or another, and will continue to inspire modern designers and attract both fashionistas and the everyday jewelry-wearer for decades to come. Courtesy of Lauri Randall.

Zen Style is timeless, beautiful, and speaks to our desire for tranquility and peace. You can see examples of this sensibility across the centuries in one form or another, and will continue to inspire modern designers and attract both fashionistas and the everyday jewelry-wearer for decades to come. Courtesy of Rustic-Zen Jewelry and Designs by Lauri Randall.

Zen Style is timeless, beautiful, and speaks to our desire for tranquility and peace. You can see examples of this sensibility across the centuries in one form or another, and will continue to inspire modern designers and attract both fashionistas and the everyday jewelry-wearer for decades to come.

Looking to carry a piece of serenity around with you? Zen Style may be just the thing for you.