Enduring the terrors of WWII, Harry and Helen Kotlar built a flourishing love in a war-torn Poland. Fueled by love’s vigor and much tenacity, the two escaped the war with their family seeking a future in America. Helen later on wrote about her life as a mother living amidst the terrors of the warfare as well as, the love, compassion, and tenacity that drove her, Harry, and their family to freedom in her 1980s novel entitled “We Lived in a Grave.”
In 1948, Harry Kotlar started a diamond business in the United States on the foundation of integrity, hard-work, love and passion with Helen by his side. Fostering an undying devotion to their core values the business thrived on with his youngest daughter Basha by his side learning the elite diamond artistry and acquiring Harry’s love and passion for it. Basha’s husband Louis Wiener later joined the legacy. Throughout the years the family devoted themselves to creating quality diamond jewelry based on the family’s tradition of love for beauty, art and perfection, establishing the Harry Kotlar name in the early years of the Los Angeles Jewelry District.
Old-world artistry meets modern sophistication
In the world of fine jewelry, pieces are ultimately judged by that most elusive of measures: history. But one cannot manufacture history and heritage on a whim. It needs to rise from the experience, passion and lineage of the craftsmen who shaped the piece, as well as the time-honored methods they employ. With every step of the crafting process, each artisan seeks to instill each piece with a sense of historic prestige.
The master artisans of Harry Kotlar utilize old world techniques, some of which have changed little in over half a millennium.
Harry Kotlar commissioned a small team of master artisans who have dedicated their lives to a specific element of jewelry-making which was passed on to them by their family for generations. Each piece is touched by only four artisans: a forger, a carver/setter, a polisher, and a quality control expert.
Platinum or gold is forged, heated, and shaped by hand. The metal is carved, stones are set and the masterpiece is finished all by hand. Everything is done without the aid of computers and digital techniques.
By creating each piece by hand, the jewelry becomes stronger, and has greater density than mass-produced counterparts. The process truly elevates the beauty and perfection of each piece, bestowing the wearer a piece of old-world history and artistry that will truly last a lifetime.