February Roundup

An unofficial wedding lookbook, neighborhood spots for thrifting and bites, and our founder Kelsey’s first podcast feature.

February is notoriously NYC’s darkest month — both figuratively and literally, in terms of the dreary weather. Despite this reputation, I was happy to find some moments of brightness throughout the month (a quick trip to Mexico for a wedding certainly helped). Here are some of the little things that brightened up my February:


I very rarely make impulse purchases, but when I saw this 100% silk shirt selling for $45 at Leisure Center after brunch one day I knew I had to snag it. It’s the perfect neutral taupe and buttery soft — I wish you could touch things through the Internet because I’d make you touch this for sure.

One of my favorite characteristics of any item is when they can swing both ways on the formal scale, which is a box this shirt ticks. This ended up coming in handy for me at that wedding I hinted at earlier.

I’ve found quite a few gems at Leisure Center so if you’re ever in the Lower East Side, you should pop by and scope it out! And say hi to Frank the owner — he’s great.

Leisure Center, located at 48 Hester St in Manhattan


Local customers have the option to pick up their orders from my Brooklyn studio, and one such customer on her studio visit recommended I check out a new-ish Tawainese spot that’s in the neighborhood. It’s called Formosa and I scoped it out the other day with a friend for lunch.

Not only were the portions very generous (always a way to my heart) but it was also delicious and exactly the type of comforting food I want to be eating in a month like February. If you find yourself in Bushwick, this is a great casual spot you can stop by for some dumplings and bowls.

We got the signature pork dumplings and a Taiwanese beef noodle dish each.


This month I traveled to Mexico to watch two of my dear friends get married (and to hand deliver the wedding bands!). I made them matching rings — customized 7mm versions of the Side Set Ring in 18k yellow gold.

Side note (no pun intended): I really like how these turned out and think I might introduce a wider version of the Side Set Ring into my collection... thoughts?

It’s always one of the greatest honors to make wedding rings for those you love, and while I was there I also got to see other pieces of mine worn by friends attending the wedding. This is going to sound so sappy, but I honestly still get a kick whenever I see someone wearing my jewelry — even if it’s someone I know, and no matter how many times I’ve seen them wear the same piece.

I love seeing how people make my creations their own, and how the pieces evolve with them and their style over time. On a more selfish level — it’s like a little part of me is with them wherever they go 🥹

Caroline wears the Arp Earrings and Epps Necklace (left); Kwame and James in custom Abel rings (right).


If you’re based in NYC you probably already know about Gem, so I’m not here to recommend the food or the drink (though I do recommend it) or wax poetic about the interior (which is, in fact, very dreamy). I just wanted to share a very small detail that delighted me when I finally checked it out for myself this past month: all of their cutlery is mismatched.

It’s such a subtle touch, but I think it adds so much to the character and feeling of a dining experience! Okay that’s it —  that’s all I wanted to point out here.


Finally — I was invited to be a guest on Creative Juicy, a podcast hosted by the lovely Michelle Wainwright about the creative process and the journey in finding one’s voice. I chatted with her about my college experience, how I got interested in jewelry, and the professional career I built in graphic design before deciding to go all in on Abel.

The episode is Michelle's 37th, and is called 'The leap from freelance to full-time with Kelsey Lim'

I have always struggled with being recorded, whether in front of a camera or microphone, so this entire experience was extremely outside of my comfort zone. I wanted to challenge myself, however, so when Michelle slid into my DMs asking if I’d be on the podcast, I responded “yes” before my anxiety could do anything about it.

While I may never get used to hearing the sound of my own voice and know I have lots I can improve on, I’m proud that I simply did it. So much of trying to grow this business has required me to push myself to do things I never thought I’d do, and it’s pretty cool to be able to continue to surprise yourself. I wonder what the next surprise will be?