Elegant. Edgy. Captivating. Sexy.
“I was born during intermission,” states spirited and internationally-renowned jewelry designer Margo Manhattan. Daughter of New York City Prima Ballerina Karin von Aroldingen and God-daughter to Ballet Master George Balanchine, Margo was born into a life of beauty and culture, one that prized precision, hard work and originality. Inspired by the fast pace of New York and the exciting beat of its dance and theater worlds, Margo’s sleek, versatile designs present a vision at once elegant and edgy, captivating, and sexy.
Margo began making Jewelry in the Byzantine technique at the tender age of 15. She instantly fell in love with the metals and stones and the endless possibilities they afforded her creativity: she had found her calling. After graduating from FIT, Margo perfected her knowledge of jewelry design in Paris at the Studio Bercot. She then immersed herself in the fashion industry, landing jobs with Karl Lagerfeld and Patrick Kelly, and with famed Vogue photographer Arthur Elgort. When her jewelry was discovered in a styling shoot by Patrick Demarchelier, Paris Vogue decided to prominently feature her work.
Shortly thereafter, Margo’s business extended the globe, from Paris to Hong Kong. Upon returning to New York, Margo set up her production facilities, opened accounts throughout the U.S. and was prominently featured in major fashion publications from Vanity Fair to Joyce in Hong Kong. In the 1990’s Margo combined her love of jewelry with her other great passion—philanthropy. This took the form of symbolic, ground-breaking designs: first the Earth pin for Earth Day (1990) followed by the original Red Ribbon lapel pin for AIDS awareness (1991). This furthered Margo’s reputation as a visionary, socially aware designer. She then developed the Pink Ribbon for Breast Cancer for Estée Lauder’s Breast Cancer Research Foundation and for other breast cancer fund-raising efforts. These ribbons have become icons over the two decades.
The new Margo Manhattan boutique opened to great fanfare in December 2010 on 88th and Madison Avenue, featuring sterling, alluring gemstones, diamond, gold and platinum jewelry. The boutique celebrates Margo’s philosophy of enhancing beauty from the inside out by creating a variety of looks through mixing and matching different types of chains: leather, pendants and necklaces all combine to display Margo’s signature styling. “The piece finds the person,” says Margo, who immediately focuses in on each client’s unique features. She reflects each individual’s beauty by custom tailoring a look and design, whether it is for everyday wear or for a wedding, engagement or other special event.
Margo first developed a dedicated following with her signature Passion collection—bold but romantic interlocking heart rings. Her passion and inventiveness as well as her signature philosophy of “living in the moment” come through eloquently in every aspect of her design, from conception through execution.