The Greek designer behind Amanda Gorman’s symbolic hoop earrings

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At just 22, the nation’s first Youth Poet Laureate Amanda Gorman delivered one of the most poignant and profound moments at Wednesday’s inauguration of President Joe Biden and Kamala Harris. 

With poise and grace, she read her poem “The Hill We Climb” wearing a bright yellow Prada blazer and a symbolic gift from Oprah Winfrey: statement gold and diamond hoop earrings by Nikos Koulis.

On this historic day, Winfrey, who has been one of Gorman’s most vocal supporters, gave the young poet the bold earrings and a birdcage ring, which recalls Maya Angelou’s “I Know Why the Caged Bird Sings” poem.

Making this a tradition, Oprah gave Angelou a gift before she delivered her reading at Bill Clinton’s 1993 inauguration.

Gorman’s words and story touched a nation and were felt as far away as Athens, Greece where designer Nikos Koulis watched the inauguration with friends and family in his hometown.

“Amanda Gorman’s speech was filled with energy,” Koulis said in an interview with Town and country. 

Oprah’s earrings will no doubt be a memorable gift, but in addition to its sentimental meaning, the bold gold hoops also reflected Gorman’s youthful spirit. There’s something liberating about big hoops, a style that been a symbol of power across cultures and throughout history, and worn by women in every generation.

For Koulis, one of the jewelry industry’s favorite designers for both his talent and kindheartedness, it’s an historic moment.

“I am in awe that as an independent designer from Greece, my work is somehow present in this highly symbolic and majestic occasion,” he said.

Who is Nikos Koulis?

Nikos Koulis is a Greek designer with worldwide recognition and success. Coming from an established family business in jewelry, he studied Gemology and Glyptography in the Gemological Institute of America and created his own brand, Nikos Koulis Jewels, in 2006, showcasing his elaborate technique along with his deep knowledge in the quality jewelry making.

His atelier is in Athens and has two boutiques in Athens and Mykonos.

Koulis received the GEM Award 2020 in Jewelry Design, one of the most prestigious awards in the international Jewelry Industry.

Among others, his loyal fans include H.R.H. Queen Rania of Jordan, Michelle Obama, Jennifer Lopez, Scarlett Johansson, Gwyneth Paltrow, Jane Fonda, Nicole Kidman, Reese Witherspoon, Alicia Vikander, Salma Hayek, Jennifer Lawrence, Saoirse Ronan, Chrissy Teigen, Emilia Clarke and Rihanna.

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