By Christina Katsantoni

Ileana Makri was born in Thessaloniki, grew up in Athens and lived in New York. She studied Business Administration and later she followed her passion by studying jewelry design in G.I.A. (Gemological Institute of America), in Santa Monica.

She has designed and made jewelry since 12 years old. Today she is a famous jewelry designer internationally, and her valuable creations have attracted well-known women like Uma Thurman, Jennifer Lopez, Heidi Klum and more.

She opened her first shop, named “Magic”, in Athens in 1987 while her first collection of minimal aesthetics that came out in 1999 secured a place at Barney’s showcase in New York City. 


Watch the Leaders Talk Here



In 2015, she launched the concept jewellery store “Ileana Makri” in Kolonaki, central Athens, where except from designs of her own there are also creations by talented designers from all over the world. 

In her jewelry she uses gold, silver and precious gems while her patterns are influenced by symbols of different cultures. Very often, she is inspired by religions and myths including Greek mythology.

Businesswoman, creator and mother, she travels around the world collecting pictures, impressions and experiences that after a while become exquisite jewelry “for no special occasion”. 

In her Leaders Talk, the jewelry designer with an international career, Ileana Makri, talks about the need and the magic of creativity, and the life realism of a woman that managed to build family and career at the same time, in five different continents. She explains the real value of jewelry, the concept of aesthetics and why elegance is not a trend.