Sleek, New York-based jewelry designer Donna Distefano has been creating original pieces for members of iconic rock band Aerosmith for years. In 2019, she even made a jewelry replica of guitarist Joe Perry’s signature Blade Runner guitar — a toast to her famous client — as part of her Rock Ready collection.
Today, in collaboration with the legendary rock band, she has launched a fine jewelry collection that celebrates the band’s 50th anniversary.
The Aerosmith x Distefano collection incorporates a multitude of Aerosmith signatures: images, lyrics, song and album names. Some notable pieces include angel wing earrings engraved with the name from the band’s second album, Get your wings; the Sin City Poison Ring, which features the band’s intricate logo embossed on a sign hiding a secret compartment; and the Dream On Necklace, which features double oval-shaped pendants that say “Dream” and “Until Your Dreams Come True” – a tribute to Aerosmith’s beloved ballad “Dream On”.
“Much of what happens in these pieces is inspired by their lyrics, their chords, and the overall beauty of each song,” Distefano notes. “[The band is] an identity for generations of fans, artists and musicians. My goal is to channel all their talents into my work.
Distefano, a former senior silversmith at the Metropolitan Museum of Art, says her relationship with the group began years ago when Perry approached her to collaborate on custom pieces for his wife, Billie Montgomery.
“Joe called and all I had to do was answer the phone!” she says. “At first I thought someone was laughing at me, but the more he talked, the more I heard that Boston accent. One of the first things he said was, ‘My wife Billie and I love it. ‘high karat gold.’ He was looking at a photo of my decorative Sphere necklace, which ended up being the inspiration for him to reach out. Joe is a shy, sincere guy who knows what he wants.
When Distefano was making special custom pieces for the couple, she would send photos and videos of the process to Perry, “and he would go crazy, more than any of my friends or other clients,” she recalls. “He has always been passionate about the technique, the depth of color and the tools of my jewellers.” She adds, “It shouldn’t come as a surprise because Joe is a 100% genuine artist. He fed me ideas and praise, and I, in turn, continued to feed him results.
Years later, she met Montgomery in person and the seeds for the collection were planted. Now, “after years of talking about it, we finally did it,” says Distefano, who along with her husband joined Perry and Montgomery at a musical performance in Lucca, Italy. She notes that the encounter reinforced that the four “felt very strongly” about developing a commemorative collection that is also cool and unmistakably gorgeous.
According to Distefano, “It was a passionate idea to combine precious metal and precious music.”
The collection, which starts at $95, is available at Aerosmith.com and to see on DonnaDistefano.com (buyers can also send a direct message to Distefano’s studio on instagram to buy).
Top: Aerosmith x Donna Distefano pendant (all photos courtesy of Donna Distefano)
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