COUTURE vs COLLECTION: Which is Right for YOU?

Ever since we launched our new Stefanie Somers Collection line, I get a lot of questions on what the difference is between Collection and our Couture pieces. This is understandable – after all, many of the designs in the Collection are modeled after Couture designs, and in photographs it can be very difficult to tell them apart. So, what IS the difference between Couture and Collection?

On the left, our CALIFORNIA Couture. On the right, Collection CALIFORNIA, both is clear Crystal - virtually identical by photo

On the left, our CALIFORNIA Couture. On the right, Collection CALIFORNIA, both in clear Crystal – virtually identical by photo

First and foremost, each and every Couture piece is handmade in our Texas studio, one at a time, specifically to each individual order. Components that make up  couture pieces are hand cut and finished, usually of a fine gauge brass, and are therefore extremely lightweight, even when stoned. Because each piece is individually hand stoned, the pattern and selection of stones is unique, so no two pieces are alike. We can make a tweak here or there, or a complete change, of color or even shape. Because we have the flexibility to change stoning patterns, we can use virtually any color palette, even if it means altering the usual cuts or sizes on a design. So, even choosing an existing Couture design assures you of a unique, OOAK (“One Of A Kind”) piece of jewelry that is yours alone, made for you from beginning to end.

Custom variation on the CALIFORNIA Couture, not possible with the Collection version - note the stoning on the back

Custom variations on the CALIFORNIA Couture, not possible with the Collection version – note the stoning on the back

Collection designs have been designed to the same shape and form as our Couture styles, but with an eye to allowing faster production and stoning by skilled stone setters, and therefore a somewhat lower cost, while keeping our quality consistently high. Collection designs are cast and plated in our Rhode Island factory, where our trained artisans hand set each crystal in a pre-set pattern and colorway. Just like their Couture counterparts, Collection designs use only Swarovksi Elements crystals assuring you of the sparkle and clarity you’ve come to expect from the Stefanie Somers brand. Because they are cast metal rather than cut, Collection designs are a bit heavier when compared to similar designs from Couture. Because Collection designs are set up to be duplicated by our factory, there can’t be any deviation in the colorways; because they are cast there can be no changes or alterations in the size or shape of the components – it is essentially a “ready-to-wear” line, available as presented.

On the left, BRITTANY Couture, on the right, the Collection counterpart - here we've changed the Collection version to a earwire due to Swarovski availability of the large top pear shaped stone

On the left, BRITTANY Couture, on the right, the Collection counterpart – here we’ve changed the Collection version to a earwire due to Swarovski availability of the large top pear shaped stone

So, which should you select, Collection or Couture? We’ve tried to structure Collection with the aim of creating pieces that will match or complement most gown and cocktail collections. We think we’ve hit that mark – you can find something in Collection to go with the vast majority of gowns and dresses that you’ll find off the rack. If you’ve selected a custom gown with exceptional colors or details, or a gown with an unusual color combination, or if you just want something that’s unique and totally you – then Couture may be something to explore, whether for a specialized colorway or a complete custom design.
That’s the overview: cut metal vs cast metal, freehand stone setting vs pre-set patterns, “anything-goes” color vs preselected colorways. We hope this gives a good primer on the differences between Stefanie Somers Collection and Stefanie Somers Couture. We always want you to feel welcome to call or email should you have any questions about either line, or if you’d like to know what’s possible, and we’ll do our best to answer anything we can. We want to make you sparkle!

To explore the range of our new Collection, visit www.StefanieSomers.com/Collection, or www.Shop-StefanieSomers.com

For an overview of Couture design, click on www.StefanieSomers.com/Couture

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