Per Diem is a series that profiles interesting people's everyday jewelry and the stories behind it. Christina Bryant Herbertis the Co-Founder, CEO, and Creative Director of St. Frank, a luxury home décor company that sources unique pieces created by artisans from around the world.
"After growing up in St. Louis, Missouri, I lived all over the country and did several stints living abroad. I started my business, St. Frank, nearly 9 years ago in San Francisco before returning to New York 5 years ago. Our team is now based in NYC. I’ve lived in New York over a few different periods of my life and my husband and I live in the West Village now. We found this rental apartment in the winter of 2020, just before we married. Not many people were moving into the city at that point and we got a great deal, complete with an extra bedroom that is now our son France’s nursery."
"I studied Art History and Architectural History undergrad at The University of Virginia before moving to Manhattan for my first job at The Museum of Modern Art. I loved the art world, but discovered that I was also passionate about international development. So, I left New York at that time and went to work for a healthcare NGO, Partners In Health, in Rwanda for nearly two years. During my time in East Africa, I met artisans who were working in traditional craft methods and I fell in love with the handwork and the stories behind the pieces that they were making. I wanted to purchase things and bring them home, but realized nothing would really work in my space once I got home. Without a business in mind, I started collaborating with artisans to produce items, some of which I even had finished further once I returned to the US. I came back to the States to go to business school at Stanford. During school I started working on a business concept that would eventually morph into St. Frank. At the end of 2012, I left my post-business school consulting job to get St. Frank off the ground. We opened our online doors in October of 2013 selling framed handmade textiles, a unique art form. Today, we also sell pillows, bedding, blankets, rugs, tabletop, home fragrance wallpaper, fabric by the yard, and more. We work with artisans around the world working in traditional craft methods to produce our collection. We are known for our eclectic, pattern-on-pattern, color-filled, bohemian aesthetic, but our goal is to create a new home for the new consumer rooted in travel off the beaten path, authentic products with rich cultural heritage to share, and ethical sourcing."
"I have always loved jewelry, especially gold jewelry, and have been slowly building my collection over my life. My mom is jewelry lover and she is my #1 style icon; she has influenced my interior and personal style more than anyone or anything else. I remember she first gave me a tiny gold cuff that had my name, “Christina,” engraved on it as a child. It’s sized for a little girl's wrist, so sadly it no longer fits!"
"I absolutely never take off my Lito evil eye bracelet or my delicate gold necklace with the solitary diamond - I sleep and shower in those. When awake, I also always wear my Buccellatti engagement ring; my husband and I wanted something non-traditional and we loved the eternity symbolism. We looked at rings together, but he picked this out and it’s my favorite thing I own. I also wear a simple gold wedding band, just a thinner version of my husband’s, which we purchased from Betteridge, a Greenwich and Palm Beach jewelry store. We picked that out in Connecticut and then picked them up in Florida, where we were married."
"Other everyday staples include earrings (usually my Balenciaga Loop Earrings), my Anita Ko Diamond Ear Cuff, and a few necklaces. I have two different weights of gold chains with a number of pendants that I rotate on them. And in the summer I rotate in some larger colorful statement earrings, though I didn’t wear any for this shoot. Both the thin and thick gold chains are Elizabeth Locke, gifts from my mom over the years, and the pendants that come off were hand-me-downs from my mom. The thin gold necklace with the diamond is from Simon’s, a St. Louis jeweler."
"Over time I’ve bought a select few pricier pieces for myself, such as my Foundrae cigar band pinky ring, which signifies Karma. I got it for myself after searching near and far for a non-preppy pinky ring (ha!). The meaning was important to me; at the time I got it and was facing a difficult situation in my family life that required me to just let go and take the higher road. Most of the items I’ve purchased for myself have been costume jewelry earrings."
"My mom and my husband have gifted me most of my jewelry and I love thinking of them when I wear them, especially since a lot of the pieces once belonged to my mom. The gold cocktail ring with a garnet stone was a gift from her and features her birthstone and my son’s as well (though he wasn’t born yet when she gave this to me… he is also named after her!). The black cocktail ring was a gift from my husband this past Christmas, just before I delivered our son, so it will always remind me of that time, our last days without a child and the family we’ve built together."