As a longtime fashion editor for media outlets including Los Angeles Magazine and The Style Network, Laurie Pike has spent decades writing about jewelry trends. But a desire to do something with her hands and express her unique (and often irreverent) design aesthetic led her to recently launch Hexagon Jewelry, featuring pieces wrought in silver, gold-fill, and semi-precious stones — along with a playful collection of reworked vintage costume jewelry; think sparkling grandma pins made uber-sassy with letters attached that spell out sayings including “Cat Lady” and “I’ll Think About It.” Best of all: everything’s under $100.
We caught up with the fledgling designer, who has been immortalized in more than one fashion tome for her chic personal style, to talk about her latest endeavor:
Does your history in fashion criticism inform your designs?
Absolutely. Reporting on fashion for more than two decades gives me a sense of context (and strong opinions!). Something from the ’20s could say ‘Downton Abbey’ to some people; ‘The Great Gatsby’ to another. To me, it might say, ‘20s as seen through the lens the 1970s, when an Art Deco revival swept fashion and design, partially as a result of the movie Bonnie and Clyde.’ But I also like to just let a piece of jewelry or clothing hit me, without trying to parse it. Good design has to stand on its own. So the eye that, as a critic, I use to evaluate things for my day job is the same eye I bring to my own designs.
What the mission of Hexagon Jewelry?
Hexagon Jewelry is for women with a discerning eye and a modest budget. Integrity is important in terms of respecting the materials — not wasting a beautiful stone by putting it on a cheap chain, for instance. Humor is important, and there’s a big French influence from me splitting my time, more or less, between Paris and Los Angeles — and buying materials in France.
Necklace from Hexagon Jewelry (photos courtesy of the company)
What would you say you are most inspired by, aesthetically, when it comes to your collection?
I wish I could be more original, but the truth is, it’s the materials. The color of the stones when light comes through them, the raw/polished dynamic of a rock from the Earth that has been expertly faceted; the magical capabilities of wire, which is both strong and totally flexible. I’m starting to understand why people get woo-woo about this stuff! I am also very inspired by other jewelry designers, especially Jacqueline Rabun, Tom Binns and Andrew Gutierrez. That’s my father, son and holy ghost.
Are you equipped for big orders? If not, when will you be?
Yes. I had a near miss with a network TV morning show, which came close to featuring my leather wrap bracelets. I spent the better part of a week lining up labor and materials and a web page that wouldn’t crash if it got a lot of hits at one time. The show fell through, but now I’m ready for growth! Additionally, the S/S 2013 is the first collection that was not made of one-of-a-kind and vintage elements. So, for the first time, my stores can order multiples.
What’s the best part of working for yourself?
Hours of uninterrupted focus.
Necklace from Hexagon Jewelry