For John Apelian, the master craftsman of John Apel, creating fine jewelry is his expression of the extraordinary relationship between art and nature. The fluid shapes, sumptuous textures and vivid gemstones of his platinum and 18-karat gold sculptures are evidence of inspiration drawn from a rolling surf, a blooming garden, a breathtaking sunset.
Born in Istanbul, Turkey, Apel grew up learning his family business of leather tanning. He studied technical arts and indulged his passion for creative arts through his hobbies—oil painting and gardening. His unique combination of chemistry expertise and innate creative talent enabled him to introduce new colors to the leather tanning process.
Shortly after his tenure at a technical school, John took a position working with a small jewelry company in Istanbul and was instantly captivated by a profession that could utilize his skills while satisfying his passions. “When you see a gemstone with light dancing in it set perfectly in lustrous gold, it is hypnotizing,” he recalls of his first years in the jewelry industry. His strong technical abilities helped him quickly master the highly specialized techniques of fine jewelry manufacturing.
In 1976, John and his wife, Hilda, came to the United States. John continued to pursue his endeavor in the U.S. and opened a small jewelry repair shop, where he began creating his own designs. In 1991, he established his own jewelry manufacturing and design company, DiLaro. His signature rose-cut line has earned him recognition for being one of the first jewelers to successfully combine the antique rose-cut style with modern jewelry fashions.
In 2006, Apelian chose to change the name of his company. “Since I’m proud of what I do I want my name to be known. This way I can personally stand behind my merchandise.” The line formerly known as DiLaro was rebranded under the designer’s moniker, John Apel.
John Apel’s devoted customers appreciate the images of nature, the vivid gemstones and the impeccable craftsmanship of the designs. Most of all, they love the wearability of John Apel Jewelry, which beautifully accessorizes every fashion style. “Throughout each stage of design,” says Apelian, “I think about the woman who will wear my jewelry. My challenge is to create pieces that enhance a woman’s beauty, not overpower it.” For John Apelian, meeting this challenge comes naturally.
WELCOME TO JOHN APEL.
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