By Madeleine Kates
To Andrew Moquin, owner of Andrew’s Jewelers and a Gemological Institute of America (GIA) certified jeweler, the pieces he creates are more than accessories. With the skill of an artisan, the discipline of an engineer, and an eye for design, Andrew has been innovating in his field for nearly 30 years.
The childhood dream of becoming an architect led Andrew to focus on design and drafting in high school, but a seasonal part-time job at a local department store jewelry counter is where he found his true calling, sending him on a career path in jewelry that combines his passions for both art and design.
Andrew is now recognized for embracing technology to create unique custom pieces, utilizing on-site computer-aided design (CAD) and 3D scanning and printing, but this was not always the case. When he first started out, Andrew accepted challenging jewelry projects out of necessity as a way to establish his new business, using his own ingenuity and skill to draw, sculpt, and engineer pieces by hand.
“In every project, there is a lesson,” says Andrew. “Heirloom jewelry is important to a family’s history, but very rarely do these items stand the test of time either in style or structure.” One of Andrew’s specialties is reimagining these pieces, with all of their components including gemstones and metals, to create a new memory for the next generation. One recent project involved combining four family engagement rings passed down from loved ones, to create a spectacular new engagement ring that honored these family members, while marking a new beginning. For another project, Andrew was able to take a hand-written message from a cherished Christmas card and scan it to create a necklace pendant in the deceased loved one’s exact handwriting.
The technology available at Andrew’s Jewelers brings the creative process to a whole new level. CAD technology allows for the creation of a 3D computer-rendered model that can be adjusted throughout the design process. 3D scanners and printers allow not only precise casting, but also the opportunity to preview the finished work before it is complete in its exact size and shape using non-precious materials to mold thermo-plastic prototypes. A computerized laser makes possible the replication in metal of images or designs, including signatures, hand-written notes, fingerprints, or photographs, which are frequently requested by pet owners.
At Andrew’s Jewelers, every step of the process is done in-house, which makes custom work available for most budgets. Consultations can be done in-person or virtually for a personalized experience that meets the needs of every client. “I am honored to be a part of a client’s milestone events, and I hope the memories captured in the pieces we create will be enjoyed for generations,” says Andrew.
Visit Andrew’s Jewelers at 4715 Transit Road, Williamsville, NY 14221 or call 716-630-7091 for an appointment. Visit them online at https://andrewsjewelers.com or on Facebook or Instagram.
Madeleine Kates received degrees in Environmental Science, Life Science, and Psychology from Niagara University, and earned certificates in Plant-Based Nutrition from Cornell University, and CHEF Coaching from Harvard University.