Ladies We Love: Jewelry Designer Ariel Gordon

Every girl needs her bling, but how often do we think about what the company behind our favorite accessories actually stands for?

Enter Ariel Gordon, a jewelry designer that prides herself in sustainable locally made adornments that are sure to become a staple in your wardrobe — and not to mention, special occasion gift go-to.

We caught up with Ariel recently in her native Los Angeles to talk about designing with social responsibility in mind, handmaking her very own font and why celebs like Claire Danes, Eva Longoria and Drew Barrymore love her flirty and sophisticated pieces.

So all of your jewelry is made here in Los Angeles?

Yup, I make everything locally here in L.A. with all responsibly sourced materials, a lot of the gold I use is recycled and all of the stones I use come from reputable dealers.

What are your inspirations behind some of the pieces and what are some of your favorite pieces?

Well in general I tend to design pieces that can be kind of staples in your wardrobe, like your favorite jeans or favorite handbag. It’s not jewelry that you have to change every day. A lot of my girlfriends have the same necklace that they wear all the time or the same studs so I just try to design pieces that can just be your “go-to” and “everyday” pieces.

I think I am well-known for my initial necklaces. I saw that movie Helvetica and became obsessed with typography, and was like “Wow, I want to make a font,” so I designed the font by hand. Drew Barrymore has one, so does Eva Longoria and Claire Danes.

I also have the little love knot rings which are really big sellers. I try to do pieces that are personalized and still sentimental, but because I design in real metals, you can shower in it, workout in it, sleep in it and it’s not going to tarnish on you, it will last for years. Continue reading

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A Summer Guide To The Season’s Hottest Nail Polish

From our fashionable friends at Refinery29:

It’s true—we get a bit fanatical about nail polish. And now that the sun is finally shining and everyone’s donning their warm-weather attire, what better way to channel our need for a summer manicure fix than by showcasing the season’s freshest lacquers? We’ve got you covered with an awesome color wheel full of more than 30 totally transformative shades. So, instead of opting for your usual hues, get ready to kick up your digit decoration with a broad spectrum of brights (think true reds, eye-popping yellows, orange-infused corals, and sea-inspired turquoise blues), try on a gritty green, or go beyond the pale with an earthy neutral. Also included in our nail polish wheel of fortune: The top coat du jour—cracks in every color. Because when it comes to nails, nothing is really off-limits, so give it a whirl!

Check out the full guide here.

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NYC Gets a Taste of the New HPNOTIQ at Yumi Kim’s Spring Social

On Thursday, HPNOTIQ celebrated the arrival of designer Kim Phan’s Spring collection for Yumi Kim — a line that we have been obsessing over ever since Lucky Shops LA. And once you’ve gotten a glimpse of the boutique on New York City’s Lower East Side, you’ll understand why!

The amazing prints and colors pop off the clothing racks, which means they’re sure to do the same while you’re out on the town in one of these super seasonal frocks. Candles, jewelry and other accessories including throw pillows in the collection’s eye-catching fabrics, adorn the store as well.

Both designer and her brand named puppy, Yumi, were in the house as guests mingled while enjoying cocktails by yours truly as well as satisfying their sweet teeth with our signature candy bar. And while Refinery29 — our favorite fashion-forward website — dished out the deals, we surprised guests with a special appearance by the new HPNOTIQ.

Many of you have been guessing the color of the newest addition to our Girls Night Out crew and since we can’t tell you all the details about our new BFF until the official release on June 1st, we thought it’d be fun to see if you could find her in the crowd among the imposters…

Be sure to check out more photos from the event after the jump as well as on our Facebook page!

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Ladies We Love: Amanda Thomas Designs Daring Jewelry With Luv

Amanda Thomas designs jewelry for the daring girl who loves accessorizing as much as she does — whether it be a singular signature piece or never-ending stacks of bracelets and rings. Luv AJ, Thomas’ dramatic collection, has hints of feminine subtlety wrapped in the illusion of fire and brimstone. It goes without saying that each piece is a definite head-turning addition to any closet.

And at the young age of 23, Amanda’s designs have already garnered a tremendous amount of attention from celebrities like Solange Knowles, Ashely Tisdale and the “coolest of cool” and ever-controversial, Lady Gaga.

We caught up with the super sweet adornment architect at Lucky Shops LA where Amanda filled us in on her perfect Girls Night Out, her “Judas” moment, and the art of piling it on. Read the rest of the interview and catch a peek of Luv AJ’s hazy and romantic Spring/Summer Lookbook after the jump!

How long have you been designing jewelry? Where does the name of your line come from?

Well, my name is Amanda Jane and when I was a little girl I used to sign everything “Luv, AJ” so when it came to finding a business name, it was the first thing that popped into my head. I started designing when I was 15 actually… probably around my senior year of high school, and I have officially been doing it full-time since May of 2010, when I graduated college.

Tell me about your inspiration process when designing.

Well, first and foremost, it’s the materials — I love sourcing crystals and stones and figuring out ways I can tarnish or plate them. It’s really all about how far I can push the materials. I’m drawn to vintage jewelry, so that’s where I get a lot of ideas for silhouettes and different chains and so on. I like everything to look somewhat worn and torn, like someone else has already been wearing it for 40 years.

Continue reading

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Trend Spotting: These Are Not Your Mom’s Pastels

With Easter around the corner, there are more fashionable ways to celebrate than by simply painting your nails with Essie pastels. Stars like Whitney Port, Leann Rimes, and Cameron Diaz show us they’re ready for spring (and Easter brunch) with pastel skinny jeans.  Think of them like the subdued, slightly more wearable version of bright skinnies. Check out some of our favorites over on!

And be sure to impress your friends with your own taste of Easter with our cocktail of the month — the Jelly Beani Teani — because every girl loves a yummy martini that matches her favorite pair of jeans!

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Trend Spotting: Maxi Skirts Are Back With a Vengeance For Spring

All of us may not have it as easy as Rachel Bilson — living in the seasonless climate of Los Angeles year round — but now that Spring is around the corner, we can totally cop The O.C. style.

Thanks to stars like Bilson, Olivia Palermo, and Kate Bosworth, you can dig out those maxi skirts from their wintertime home because they’re back with a vengeance come this Spring and Summer.

And although we saw these flowing skirts paired with gladiator sandals last time around, take a cue from the stars and jazz up this daytime go-to outfit with a some sexy wedges or a to-die-for chunky heel– a girl can dream, can’t she?

Will you be wearing maxi skirts this season? Or are they oh-so-2010? Let us know in the comments below!

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