Flaunt Talks Jewelry With Monica Vinader
Early afternoon on Friday, the 15th of September, I made my way to West Hollywood to meet with British jewelry brand, Monica Vinader. As I arrived at Sunset Marquis, to meet Vinader and some of her team, I became extremely aware of my lack of jewelry. Nevertheless I made my way to the table and was met by smiling, well accessorized, ladies.
Vinader ate salad and sipped sparkling water while she told me about her recent shop-in-shop at the Nordstrom, South Coast Plaza. The team boasted about its success since the July opening and let me know that more Vinader Nordstrom shops are in the works. As Vinader drizzled more olive oil on her salad I asked her how the partnership with Nordstrom came to be:
“Nordstroms came to us and gave us the opportunity to do this. They said ‘your sales are doing really good in California and this is a really great location in the O.C.’ And as partners you work really closely together so I totally trusted their judgement. It was such an amazing opportunity, and it is such a beautiful store.”
Monica Vinader first opened in 2008 and has had great success ever since. Her first piece was a friendship bracelet, Fiji Friendship Bracelet, that is still available today. I asked her what inspired the classy take on friendship bracelets and she spoke about vacation and the corded bracelets you often bring home as gifts. She loved the idea of collecting memories, especially in the form of jewelry, and wanted to make a “grown up” version. Her and a friend worked closely together to design the metal and cord bracelet, and later came the addition of engraving. The brand puts a large emphasis on engraving because it gives people a way to put a personal memory or message onto a bracelet but still look more professional than just a braided cord bracelet you might acquire on the beaches in Ibiza.
We got side tracked once or twice, talking about the beach, Vinader’s favorite T.V. series Californication, and family road trips.
Family has played a large part in Vinader’s life, both creative and business aspects. She spoke with joy about her childhood experiences with jewelry. From the charms her grandmother would give her each birthday, to the art deco Van Cleef rings her mother used to let her wear -- jewelry was apart of Vinader’s life from the start.
My mother is still hesitant to trust me with a cubic zirconia, let alone thousand dollar vintage pieces. Vinader laughed when I told her this and spoke about how she thinks quality jewelry should be accessible to everyone. Her brand strives to fall in between “fashion and fine jewelry” aka playful, yet still high quality.
Vinader’s sister, Gabriela, joined forces with the brand later, after some slight arm pulling. Monica pulled her sister away from her job and now they run the company hand in hand. They divide and conquer in the business world but still share an amazing bond.
Vinader describes her jewelry as “accessible, fun, and wearable.” She plans to continue growing and expanding throughout the United States, which means she will be on this side of the pond much more often.
Tomorrow Vinader will be at her Costa Mesa shop-in-shop, located inside the South Coast Plaza Nordstrom, teaching a master styling class with influencer Louise Roe. Based on my accessorizing today, I definitely have a thing or two to learn.
Written by Devin Hendricks