Jules Smith Collection
Iconic Runway Looks for a Steal
Gina Nigrelli was inspired to launch the Jules Smith Collection when she moved with her husband to the Caribbean in 2005 and put her dreams of a fashion line on hold to pursue jewelry. Gina found the jewelry culture on the island of St. Thomas to be so dynamic that she was inspired by the many great teachers and gorgeous places to start designing. The Jules Smith collection is “reminiscent of influential runway looks of decades past, infused with modern day influences” as Gina identifies the “free-spirited essence of the 70’s and the glamour and excess of the 80’s as her brand inspirations.” Her collection is comprised of bold cuffs, star motifs, engraved monochromatic animal print pieces, chain link silhouettes, vintage charms, rings and bangles. “My collection pays homage to the iconic trends in fashion,” reflects Nigrelli. “One strong accessory, such as a dominant necklace, cuff or bold pair of earrings, completes a look that is timeless and effortlessly chic.” Jules Smith is sold online at julessmithdesigns.com, as well as at chickdowntown.com, shopbop.com and revolveclothing.com
Initially interested in fashion, she began her fashion career as a fashion editor and merchandiser after attending New York University and University of Colorado, Boulder. She then earned a degree in fashion design at The International Academy of Design in Chicago. Gina finds that “If you are a jewelry lover, all jewelry is unique.” “Trends change, but my perspective is that jewelry is a relatively timeless item in a girl’s wardrobe.” Therefore, she tries to create designs that people can carry from season to season and always find something in their wardrobe to wear it with. For herself, she loves layering her own designs with other designers’ pieces and is also obsessed with stars, which are her favorite pieces. She really enjoys designing charms for her jelly bracelets and mixing and matching colors and textures.
Some loyal celebrities who wear her pieces are Lindsey Lohan, Molly Sims, Jaime Lynn Sigler, Mary Kate Olson, Lauren Conrad, Kristen Stewart, Angelina Jolie, Cameron Diaz, Leighton Meester, Blake Lively, Rumer Willis, Anne Hathaway, Eva Longoria, and many more. Gina herself loves anything vintage and frequents flea markets, vintage jewelry stores, vintage furniture shops in addition to browsing old magazines, books and art. “Most of my designs attempt to emulate styles of the past,” says Gina. She works with all materials but she is partial to chains as she uses it in almost all of her pieces.
One of their most popular pieces, which is a celebrity favorite and editor obsession, is the Kiss Kiss Petite Necklace. Worn by celebs like Anne Hathaway, Taylor Momsen, Emmanuelle Cchriqui, and more, this sexy piece is available in silver, yellow, or rose gold. With a sexy set of lips on this necklace, what is not to like? Pucker up – because this pendant is sure to be a conversation starter that may end in a kiss! One of our favorite vintage charms necklaces is the Love You Long Lock and Key Necklaces, with its miniature key and lock pendants. With this friendship and love necklace, the key fits inside the delicate lock and is sold individually or as a set. Best when both necklaces are worn together as a lock and key combination, this feminine and flirty necklace set is the perfect gift for someone special or for yourself! It sits gracefully against the collarbone and is a great everyday piece. Available in both sterling silver or gold vermeil.
Her collection is always evolving with new styles but keeping classics that are in demand. One of collections was inspired by her trip to Africa, where she visited 10 countries to do volunteer work. “I continue to draw inspiration from that trip and my spring collection actually has many pieces that reflect my experiences there,” Gina says. She never knows when she is going to feel inspired and finds that it can happen on a train, from a dream, at a flea market or being in Forever 21. With a notebook at her side, she is always ready to jot down or take a photo of something that inspires her.
For the rocker girl in you, glam it up with the Chain Reaction Rockit Earrings, that are dramatic, light-weight, and eye-catching. These thick chain link earrings are comfortable and hang vertically to command attention with its shiny finish. They have a very 80’s feel to them but are oh so classic rock n’ roll! Choose from sterling silver, yellow, or rose gold. The Birthday Girl Charm Bracelet is a cute but barely noticeable everyday piece to make you feel special all year round. Created in celebration of the collection’s second birthday, this bracelet can be customized with your choice of string color and birthstone. The colored string is intertwined between the round links of the silver or gold chain, creating a lightweight and whimsical bracelet that is pretty enough to wear everyday.
Jules Smith also presents fun and playful pieces like Good Luck Jellies, described as “fashion meets cosmic consciousness, uniting the world on one wrist.” These trendy black jelly bracelets each feature an assortment of charms like an evil eye, star, moon, dice, and more in gold. Just like the ones you use to wear in grade school, only kicked up a notch with gold charms contrasting against the shade of black. Another fun favorite to wear alone or layered are the Star Struck Blank Stars Necklace. This is one of Jules Smith’s top sellers and another celebrity favorite. The miniature stars are a classic and shine bright and bold when worn. This stars necklace makes a great everyday piece.
Since 2008, Gina and her husband have settled in New York City, where she can further expand her Jules Smith line. In the next five years, Gina hopes to establish a great international business and grow her current web business with a strong website, along with a free standing store in New York City. Be sure to check out her exciting New Moon collection inspired by Twilight’s second movie due out November 2009. For more information, become a fan on Facebook and visit her website julessmithdesigns.com