Molding the Maker
A creative spirit, Ilene Klein grew up in the Hudson Valley of New York with an insatiable artistic curiosity and a father who encouraged her to pursue each and every new passion, from photography to cooking and sculpture. Through earning a degree in Culinary Arts, starting as a baker and working in various restaurants. Klein ultimately landed by heading a media company as chief Executive Creative Director and owner for twenty-seven years, Klein was never one to bow to expectations or remain stagnant.
When her father, the man who had so lovingly inspired her, a life long music director and artist, suddenly passed away, she needed a new outlet to work through her heartbreak. She attended a jewelry workshop at the 92nd Street Y where she met Stephanie, a skilled broach-maker turned friend, who would teach her reticulation. The process of heating and cooling the metal yielded incredible, wearable art, as well as a sense of peace for Klein. Her first-ever reticulated design was named “The Stephanie,” in honor of her metalworking mentor.
Even though her jewelry bench moved thirteen times, she never gave up.—it was the hobby she couldn’t abandon. Her pieces drew attention wherever she went, to the point of being stopped on the street regularly. Everyone asked the same question: “Where do you get that?” Eventually, she started Sophia Roc, a handcrafted line of jewelry named after her two corgis, Sophia and Rocco.
Though she lives in NYC, Currently her studio is in Asbury Park, a place of refuge and meditation for Klein, where she practices yoga and gathers inspiration from the light refracting off the ocean water onto the sand. The parallel ...movements of the glistening sea and the transformation of the metal with heat is a key tenet of Sophia Roc creations. Each individual piece is a labor of love with a unique energy. Made to seeks out its corresponding owner, and a reminder that spirituality can guide us through any obstacle.