Steve Kaufman grew up in upstate New York where he attended the State University of New York at Buffalo, later attending graduate school at Michigan State where he studied package design. After graduation, he moved to New York City where he worked in the cosmetic industry designing packaging for Revlon, John Robert Powers and Yardley.
He soon became disenchanted with the corporate life of business suits, lunches, meetings and all the other expectations of someone climbing the corporate ladder. In 1970 he left the corporate life, purchased a one way ticket to Europe and hit the “hippie” trail for a year long adventure. During his travels, he learned to make jewelry by reshaping antique spoons and forks into rings, bracelets and necklaces. Upon his return to New York City, he was able to sell these creations to Henri Bendell’s, Fortunoff’s and high end fashion boutiques. In 1976, he moved to Mill Valley California where he met his wife Elaine. Together they moved to Carmel where they opened Ladyfingers Gallery. His work is prominently featured in their award winning gallery, together with the work of 40 other studio jewelers from around the world.