How This Female-Led Company Is Disrupting the College Jewelry Market

Kyle Cavan, a female-owned commemorative jewelry and gifts company, is on a mission to bring a fresh female voice and perspective to the collegiate jewelry market. The company was founded by designer and Duke University alumni, Kyle Garcia after she was seeking a more stylish way to represent her Alma Mater. During her 5-year college reunion, the designer revealed, “My friends and I were having the best time reliving school together, and I thought it’s such a shame that we don’t have something stylish and cool to wear post-college that represents such an important time in our lives.”

After her reunion, Kyle started researching and learned the class ring was originally designed for men graduating military school (West Point) in 1835. She added, “If you look at some of those old designs, the ring hasn’t changed a lot. I was like – it’s the 21st century, more women than men are going to college now, and there is nothing better than this?” For Kyle, that was the beginning of it all. “I love architecture, and it’s what inspired much of our collections you see today.”

The Duke University Collection was the first collection that Kyle designed, taking inspiration from the vaulted gothic ceilings of Duke University Chapel. “I set out to design a Duke-inspired jewelry collection that I would be proud to wear every day,” the designer mentioned. “Transforming the detailed gothic vaulted ceiling into a Shield Pendant- the first piece in the collection- came naturally as I had been considering using elements from my family crest in the shape of a shield, as a logo. I began to source my inspiration from the iconic architecture, familiar crests and timeless beauty found on college campuses like Duke,” Kyle added.

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Kyle Cavan, named after both the founder and the county in Ireland where her family originates, represents 14 universities and is continuing to expand. Born and raised in New York, Kyle and her team design all of the jewelry in the West Village. All of the pieces are manufactured in NYC and are made to order, giving each piece a one-of-a-kind quality. According to Kyle, “We are one of the few female-led and owned college jewelry companies out there. Most are corporate and male-owned & operated. Because of this, we are very passionate about female entrepreneurship and mentorship.”

Kyle Cavan offers Iconic Bangles, Necklaces, Shield Pendants and Cufflinks for men. The Iconic Necklaces are the newest pieces in the collection and were launched this fall. The necklaces feature iconic buildings found on college campuses like Princeton, Columbia, and Dartmouth. Admired for its unconventional and subtle designs, the Collegiate Collection bridges the gap between affinity and fine jewelry while maintaining classical appeal.

In addition to the university collections, Kyle Cavan also recently launched a Compass Collection. The collection features the Deconstructed Compass Lariat and the “North Star” Compass Necklace. Inspired by the compass, a symbol of purpose and direction, the necklace and lariat are a literal deconstruction of the brand’s compass logo.

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After speaking with hundreds of alumni and students who were “tired of that tacky ring design” and were interested in “something unique,” Kyle knew that she found her niche market. Born from a simple desire to make one piece of jewelry to commemorate those pivotal college years, it has transformed into an innovative and incomparable collection.

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Every Kyle Cavan piece is designed to be at home among family heirlooms while celebrating your personal journey. The collections are meant to fit in with fashion pieces while speaking to something so much deeper. According to Kyle, “It is my hope that these collections stand the test of time and serve as a reminder of one of my favorite quotes, “Be more than proud of your legacy. Live up to it.”

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