Fans of the Laundress, the high-end line of detergents and fabric care products, may not be aware that cofounder Lindsey Julia Boyd sold the company to Unilever in 2019.
Since then? She’s been having some good, clean fun in the fine jewelry space.
In fact, at the end of last year, Boyd launched her latest venture: Rondel, a contemporary fine jewelry collection centered on charms and lockets that serve as vehicles for personal storytelling. The name derives from the French word rond (meaning “round”) and celebrates the connections between people and across cultures, as well as all things coming full circle.
The chic factor is very pronounced and not incidental; prior to launching the Laundress, Boyd was a ready-to-wear manager at Chanel in North America, working with key Chanel boutiques and wholesale accounts like Bergdorf Goodman.
Indeed, the spirit of the collection—the levity, the fashion element—is very Mademoiselle (Coco Chanel famously adored charms and chains and championed the art of the mix).
Consider the sheer scale of the charms—some measure as large as quarters—which distinguishes the collection as a genuinely fresh take on a classic. In the age of Zoom calls, dainty charms on delicate chains or link bracelets don’t have much of an impact. Graphic and colorful, these bolder beauties certainly do, offering the fun and frivolity of a personalized, curated look but with a little more presence on the wrist or neck.
“I love larger-scale jewelry,” says Boyd. “I think that stems from my love of costume jewelry—large bangles, layered pearls, and oversize earrings. It is also easier to layer larger pieces because smaller and dainty pieces get tangled.”
The biggest charms in the line are known as Heroes and serve as the foundation of the Rondel’s build-your-own necklaces, which are meant to be layered with smaller charms plus clip-on spacers and gold rondelle spacer beads. “I knew I wanted the Hero pieces to be the largest, so I scaled down from there,” says Boyd. “This was not an easy task to do. There were many sketches and renderings before I had the perfect size.”
The Yard Sale necklaces—prestyled, artfully curated jumbles of charm styles that dangle just so—have quickly become fan favorites.
“The With Love Yard Sale is definitely seeing the most engagement right now,” says Boyd (the piece is pictured below). “Clients are engraving all four charms with family names, sayings, initials.… We call them Love Letters because they tell a story. This piece is special to me as the hero sunburst charm is inspired by my grandmother’s original charm she wore every day, and, of course, I love hearts!”
Clad in superlustrous vitreous enamel, the collection is handcrafted in a European workshop using 18k gold. Accordingly, everything has the luster and quality of a luxury product. But is the customer willing to spend wildly on something with such a whimsical, youthful esprit (versus something with more gravitas, perhaps a ring or bracelet heaped with diamonds)?
Boyd is banking on it—after all, she built an empire on $20 cashmere shampoo and plant-derived fabric softener.
“Our quality and design [concepts] are made to be worn now and for generations to come, much like your diamond eternity band,” she says. “The uniqueness that we bring that other fine jewelry doesn’t is the storytelling and personalization that you build on over time.”
Suds good to me!
Top: Clockwise, from left: Rondel Gretta bracelet in 18k gold and enamel with organic heart charm, $3,449; Take Heart Jelina necklace in 18k gold and enamel with charms on 18k gold chain, $3,145; Coeur de Fleur Yard Sale necklace in 18k gold and enamel with charms on 18k gold chain, $6,339 (model photos: Lindsey Belle)
Follow me on Instagram: @aelliott718
Follow JCK on Instagram: @jckmagazine
Follow JCK on Twitter: @jckmagazine
Follow JCK on Facebook: @jckmagazine