Sense of Place: Cynthia Carlson

Cynthia Carlson
Photo Credits: Michael Caronchi

Cynthia Carlson began designing jewelry as a teenager growing up in Minnesota and quickly realized it was more than a hobby. “People started noticing the jewelry I made for myself and wanted me to make it for them,” she says. “By the time I was 18, I was designing pieces for stores.” Today, Carlson marks the twenty-fifth anniversary of her namesake fine jewelry

store in Naples. Her passion for jewelry began as a child, during many travel adventures with her parents. “We were rock hounds,” she says. “We would collect exotic rocks and shells on the islands and make seashell jewelry with beads.” She still has trays of rocks, shells, sea glass, and even driftwood at home—all treasured keepsakes from her adventures.

Thrill of the hunt: We’d go to Lake Superior in the fall and hunt for agates all day long. When I travel now I like to collect sea glass on the Amalfi Coast. I’m always searching for that unusual piece. That’s where the love of all gemstones came from. I appreciate what goes into finding it.

Favorite escapes: Lake Minnetonka for wakeboarding and sailing; Telluride for mountain biking and hiking in the summer and skiing in the winter.

Esteemed fashion designers: Prada and Hermès for shoes and handbags because they’re timeless and last forever.

Amalfi Coast

Best stress reliever: Hot power yoga with Gus at Green Monkey, Naples.

Favorite gemstones: I’m all about blue—sapphire, turquoise, and aquamarine. The colors of the water and sky.

Go-to scent: Le Cherche Midi #1 signature scent. I was so obsessed with it that I purchased the company in the spring. It has a cult following, and it’s such a great scent.

Bucket-list topper: Maldives and Seychelles in the Indian Ocean.

Words to live by: Smile—it’s a universal language.

Most treasured possession: A turquoise and silver ring given to me by my father on a trip out west.

Beloved charity: Cancer Alliance of Naples. All the proceeds stay in Collier County. I have lost several family members to the disease, and I know almost everyone’s family has been touched by it as well.

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