Aja Raden

Author, 'Stoned: Jewelry, Obsession, and How Desire Shapes the World'

Aja Raden has been a professional jewelry designer for over a decade. For over seven years, she worked as the senior designer for Los Angeles-based fine jewelry company Tacori. In that time, her pieces have walked the red carpet at the Oscars, Golden Globes and events too numerous to mention.

She was raised in Santa Barbara, California in a family of academics. A scientist herself, biotech engineering is also a major interest of Aja’s, and she has contributed IP to a variety of US medical devices and programs, most recently patenting new syringe technology in 2012.

Combining her love of science and history, she has participated in numerous Archaeological and Paleontological digs around the world. She also worked in Page Museum Lab as a microfossil extraction and reconstruction specialist.

Her hands-on experience in the jewelry industry—from design and production, to international gem trading, to antiquities, appraisals and historically important jewels—as well as years’ worth of industry contacts make her an expert in the field. Her expertise sits at the intersection of academic history, industry experience and scientific perspective.

Stoned, a work of narrative nonfiction about jewelry and the economics of desire, releases in fall of 2015 from Ecco Press and is her first published book.