Ria Perez-Olonan wearing her own Joyeria baubles. Shot at Commune, 36 Polaris st. Poblacion, Makati.

“You have to meet my friend Ria, she owns a fine jewelry business, she made these for me and Char. It’s our sisters ring, gifted by my MIL.” my friend L (for Leona, I’d just decided this is how I’d like to call her) says to me over brunch as she waves her hands and shows me delicate stacks of rings in golden shades, some with stones and some without. I felt a small pang of envy and awe as I looked at her fingers and stopped to appreciate each one. “Wow what a sweet Mom!,” I said with a laugh and L agreed wholeheartedly. She shares that the cost, considering the metals and stones used, was incredibly reasonable and I, although non-expert, had to agree; it was a classic (yet designed in a contemporary way) piece that will keep forever and looked super chic with absolutely anything.

By the time we kissed bye, we agreed that more people needed to know about this important information plus shine light on the designer’s talent, who I would later find out was also intelligent as she was beautiful. We waited until both L and her sister-in-law Char were both free to do the shoot at our common friend Ros’ cafe. I gave them instructions to style Joyeria’s latest collection in pieces that defined their personalities. Gone are the days that fine jewelry are only to be strictly worn for black tie or dressy occasions; nowadays, it’s chic to be ironic with fashion, so sporting a tennis bracelet with an old white tee is considered the new cool, the norm even. Broke the rules they did, and so much more! It was a great pleasure working/playing with these ladies and feel their closeness and sisterhood; such an appropriate end to bid Women’s Month farewell.
IG: joyeriajewelleryph
FB: Joyería Jewellery PH
Landline: +6329066010
Celphone: +639175088478
Private Showroom (by appointment): Fairways Tower, BGC Taguig

Ria on Joyeria 

When did you start the business? How did you differentiate the identity of Joyeria from your family jewelry business?
Joyería started in 2014 but we only catered to the fine jewelry requirements of our friends, who were either proposing, getting married, or just looking for the perfect gift for their special someone and even for themselves (sort of pat on the back for the promotion, etc.). Somehow, the friends I grew up with remembered my jeweller parents and knew they’ll be getting a good deal if they purchase fine jewelry from me. But unlike the straight-off-the-factory packaging of my parents: blue jewelry foam and plastic, Joyería upped its presentation to have that luxurious look despite its friendly price, which brings about the joy and the heart of the brand. It’s just serendipitous how the words/letters “joy”, our core, “e”, my husband and business partner’s name —Erick, and “Ria”, yours truly, all form the word “joyeria”, which literally translates as “jeweller” in Spanish.

Who / what is Joyeria’s target market?

Originally, Joyería’s target market was just friends and friends of friends that eventually, grew through word of mouth. We’ve really built a rapport with clients as their trusted personal jeweller. As part of our sincere service, we make sure we’re tranparent and recommend value for money deals. We’d like to build more lasting relationships like that. It’s nice to be part of a family’s legacy: from engagement, wedding, birthdays, anniversaries, graduation, and many more milestones.

What are some important points to remember on buying fine jewelry?

Don’t be pressured by the 4C’s or gem/pearl grade. Find the sweet spot between your budget and desired specs. In the end, a good setting can always highlight the beauty of the stone as it is.

Most people can only afford to buy fine jewelry at a certain age..what’s a good “first piece” to buy once you can? And why?

I always recommend the classic diamond studs in 14k gold enlarger setting. It’s a must-have in your wardrobe that you can style in different ways. They can build their collection and make several looks using earring jackets, from halo, danglings, birthstones etc. The possibilities are endless once you start with the basics.

How would you style fine jewelry if you’re under 50 (years onld)?

I think that’s the beauty of fine jewelry. Diamonds, rubies, sapphires, emeralds, solid gold never go out of style and never tarnish. If you have avant garde or vintage pieces from lola’s jewelry box, you can have it redesigned and reset to fit your style. I always recommend classic settings so when you outgrow them (need bigger pieces for growing lobes, finger joints), you can pass it on to your children, and still be a classic.

Whats your favorite piece of all time and why? 

My favorite piece would definitely be the two-tone princess cut diamond creole my mom designed for me when she was still around. It can go from day to night, sporty to formal, plus it hides my droopy earlobes perfectly. I’ve had it since I was 18 and I always have it on. It’s ageless and timeless. I recently even had several custom made for clients who take notice. It’s my favorite piece because although I know I can make several similar designs, it can never replace the original given by my mom. Her memory lives on.

Sisters-in-law Leona Panutat and Char Carlos in their versions of a minimalist look. All jewelry by Joyeria.

The sisters rings up close!

Char’s channels Vicky B. in her classic look. I LOVE.

Leona in one of her favorite tops by Pat Ramos.

Color looks gorgeous on this beauty and further highlights the jewels.

Her version of sporty and the jewelry goes perfectly!

Leona mixing pastel prints!

A closer look at her masterpiece.

Char’s subtle mix print version is an A+.

“The Joyería EmpoweRing, launching this May, has 10 natural diamonds on each of the laurel leaves set in 14k solid gold, is to be worn on the “thanksgiving” (index) finger to symbolize the joy in luxury: of being able to write your own destiny as you create impact on other lives. When I designed it, I think of the joyous ripple effect it could have, as part of the sales would help support the Safe Cities Programme of the United Nations Women here in the Philippines. In essence, it’s women empowering women.”



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