Heena Shah’s evolution as a designer has been, like the stories of many modern women, a tale of striving for excellence in every aspect of her life. From her pursuits in the arts to an early career in engineering at Google, Valani Atelier’s creative director has found herself alongside confident and ambitious women, bold but never anything less than themselves. Trained at the Gemological Institute of America, Heena became the youngest fine jewelry designer to win six prestigious AGTA Spectrum awards, including in the Platinum Guild and Women’s Jewelry Association categories.
Valani Atelier’s deeply rooted connections to families and artisans in the gem world gave her a first-hand education and a love for colored precious gemstones. She’s travelled the world to learn from miners in Brazil, gold experts in Italy, and pearl farmers in Japan, finding incredible materials and forging irreplaceable relationships.
“A deliberate form and a vibrant gemstone can say something and say it well, but it takes work. The form has to be refined, it’s got to be the right stone, the right color, and not just from the right place—but the right people.”