5 Minutes With Jeweler-to-the-Stars Lorraine Schwartz
Kim Kardashian West, Blake Lively, Pharrell and Rita Ora came to Tuesday night's bangle launch party at Delilah.
On Tuesday night, the New York-based, celebrity-loved jewelry designer Lorraine Schwartz threw her first-ever party in Los Angeles at Delilah in West Hollywood to celebrate the launch of her new blue topaz-and-diamond Against Evil Eye bangle bracelets, which range from a new "inexpensive for us" $6,000 (according to Schwartz, who spoke to The Hollywood Reporter before the festivities) up to a cool $40,000. Kim Kardashian West, Kris Jenner, Blake Lively, Usher, Pharrell Williams, Rita Ora, Sofia Vergara, Halsey and Heidi Klum were among the starry crowd who came out to celebrate.
Schwartz is the woman responsible for decking out Andra Day in $5 million worth of jewels at the Academy Awards, including a pink-and-champagne diamond floral earrings and choker, a diamond lariat and multiple diamond rings (maybe that’s why Day was reclining on the red carpet, under the weight of it all). Sandra Bullock, Octavia Spencer and Molly Sims also donned Schwartz's designs at the Oscars, while Beyonce rocked $6.8 million worth of Schwartz jewelry at the Grammys, including a custom-made pair of drop earrings that starred 35-carat diamonds in the center.
Check out what Schwartz had to say about her latest designs, her most splashy red-carpet pieces and more, below.
Tell us about your Against Evil Eye collection.
I actually started my jewelry design career with an Against Evil Eye bangle because I was a diamond dealer and I basically wanted an evil eye made out of real diamonds and topaz and I couldn’t find one. There were fake stones or glass and turquoise. So I made some bracelets for myself and a few friends and people went crazy. All of a sudden, stores started calling. I saw Naomi Campbell in France right after I made them and she called the next morning and said, "I need it." This was at the end of 2001 or early 2002, when I first started making myself diamond bangles and the Against Evil Eye bracelets and everybody started to notice the pieces I was wearing.
The jewelry takes away from the eye being on you; it’s like someone is watching you and seeing what happens. The philosophy is that if there’s envy, let that energy go to the eye. We call it the eye of protection. You see the Kardashians wearing them all the time and Blake Lively, Beyonce, Rita Ora, Pharrell, all my celebrities wear the Against Evil Eye bracelet. They are unisex and are meant to be layered with other pieces like my 2b Happy bracelets and anything else you want to add. It's day-to-night jewelry that you never take off.
As usual, you’ve had a busy awards season. Any favorite moments?
Zoe [Kravitz at the Golden Globes]. Those earrings have over 120 carats of Columbian emeralds, and the bottom has black jade outlines that come on and off so they can be worn a few different ways. When I saw her dress options [she wore black Saint Laurent], I said, "These are the best," and she fell in love with them and just rocked it. It was a moment. This is why I do what I do and why I come myself, unlike other jewelers who send a few pieces, whether they pay or don’t pay. They’re not vested. We’ve never paid a celebrity to wear our jewelry; in fact, most of them are our clients and they buy from us. And we really work hard. I’ll spend days coming up with something new if I don’t have the right thing on hand. I’m really lucky to have Blake Lively and Beyonce and Sofia Vergara and Heidi Klum and Zoe and Kim, who are just really loyal about wearing my jewelry. Also Sarah Hyland, who has come to me since she was a little girl.
Talk about Beyonce’s 70-carat diamond earrings at the Grammys.
Those are made out of diamonds and titanium. I knew she was looking for something that made a statement and she had a certain theme. I came up with a couple of ideas and I sent pictures to her stylist Marni Senofonte, who is one of my best friends, and we worked closely together with Beyonce. The earrings are very geometric. They were meant to be very empowering, very strong. She was going a bit with the Black Panther theme, so we wanted something that could relate to that but still be feminine. You definitely need a woman with confidence to wear those.