Alumna founds online fine jewelry store

Courtesy of Moran Amir

“We are the modern girl’s jeweler.”

This philosophy emblazons the home page of the recently launched online jewelry retail store, Adornia. Moran Amir, a CAS alumna from the class of 2005, and her best friend, Becca Aronson, founded the shop in 2012 because of their mutual love of fine jewelry. Adornia is an online purveyor of fine jewels that offers women an exciting method to create a foundational jewelry wardrobe, discover exotic handmade adornments and find the perfect gifts.

“[We] took a look at the online landscape and saw a white space for a more experimental, modern approach to fine jewelry retailing,” Amir said. “We wanted to create an inspiring environment for women to buy fine jewelry. Enter Adornia, our Greek goddess of beauty, luxury and all things bejeweled.”

For Amir, the brass and gold-plated costume accessories that populate most women’s jewelry boxes today break and tarnish quickly and shouldn’t define a woman’s jewelry collection. Instead, Amir and Aronson wanted to infuse an heirloom-minded sensibility back into the way women shop for accessories and offer stylish, modern pieces that deserve to be passed down.

“Jewelry is a lost art,” Amir said.“Back in the day, women would think about their purchases and collect jewelry masterfully.”

Adornia was born with the philosophy that every woman “deserves a jewelry brand that provides utmost style without compromising on quality.”

The duo hand-selects every piece they sell online and curates them into groups of jewelry staples and collections, and themed sets of jewelry. Women can shop for timeless, wear-everyday pieces like geometric pendants, delicate pearls and gold bangles starting at $125. The Collections tab on the website is a highly curated way of shopping for jewelry. Deco After Dark offers dripping strands of pearls, geometric statement earrings and cocktail rings. Rebel of the Tribe and Shanghai Can Wait offer exotic pieces such as a 14-karat gold cat ring, turquoise drop earrings, rough black diamonds and pops of fuchsia.

Luxury jewelry retail was not always the industry Amir envisioned as a career. While at NYU, Amir majored in history with a concentration in German history. She supported herself financially throughout college, waitressing in the East Village and working as a student tutor at the Weinstein Learning Center. She describes her time at NYU as a “harrowing experience” where she was forced to grow up quickly and “confront issues such as career, relationships, etc. at a [more] mature.”

Aronson, who met Amir in 2011 when they were pursuing their M.B.A.’s at the Wharton School of the University of Pennsylvania, admires Amir’s business model and passion for their company.

“Amir’s keen business mind is so great to watch in action,” Aronson said. “She is always surprising me with fantastic ideas for how to grow and market the business. She is also one of the best negotiators I have ever seen. Whether she is working out or sleeping, she is always thinking of ways to improve Adornia.”

Hilary Presley is a staff writer. Email her at features@nyunews.com.

Hilary Presley is a staff writer. Email her at features@nyunews.com.

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