Nothing fazes celebrity-adored jewelry designer Jennifer Fisher. The longtime stylist-turned-household name brand founder has determination in spades, evidenced by how she jumped to keep the company afloat during COVID (Fisher personally fulfilled customer orders day in day out!). Now, she’s also endeavored to open up a beautiful new Beverly Hills boutique amidst it all. We got a sneak preview of her first West Coast location—one that’s particularly close to the Cali-native’s heart—which is nestled amongst North Canon’s chicest eateries. J.Lo-approved jewels followed by a martini next door?! You had us at hello! Here’s everything you need to know about the space and the brains behind the brand.
Congrats on the new Beverly Hills store! How long has it been in the works?
We found the spot, I want to say, two years ago now. We are big patrons of the restaurants around the store (i.e. La Scala and Wally’s) and I thought it would be best for our first store to position ourselves close to popular food establishments. We always try to think of our brand differently than other jewelry brands. We are a little more casual, more accessible, and I wanted to be in a spot that was more convenient for people, but also didn’t feel in any way unapproachable. That was our choice for location—on North Canon, in a space that you wouldn’t normally see a jewelry store. When I was younger, I would come to Beverly Hills to go shopping and go to Melrose, but also go through the dreamy stores on Rodeo Drive. It was always a dream, maybe one day I could have a store here. Maybe one day I could be big enough to be in the same neighborhood as these stores. I thought whatever it is I end up doing, maybe one day I could be here. At the time, obviously not knowing I was going to become a jewelry designer, but in some capacity having a business big enough to be in that area.
Tell us about the space.
I have always had a love for clean interiors, minimal living, and one of my best friends, Michelle Gerson, happens to be a fabulous designer in New York. She helped bring my vision for the store to life. The chandeliers are from Entler lighting. I wanted the cases to feel light and bright and airy–almost floating. That is why they are white and very minimal. I wanted our jewelry experience to set itself apart from other jewelry stores. This store is going to set the tone for the rest of our stores. It was important to be me that the jewelry felt approachable and not too precious to touch.
How has the process been getting ready to open? Is it nerve-wracking opening a new retail location right now?
I was out to drinks last night with my retail director and we were talking about how relaxing it actually has been opening the store. Leading up to it, my entire team having to do the work to get it ready has been the most tasking part. Having not ever opened a separate standalone store to our New York store, we wanted to do things differently and wanted to make sure we didn’t make some of the same mistakes we did with the first one. In the end, it made it easier for us to be relaxed about the opening. Financially, we are an independent brand with no investors, there is no big business paying the bills, it’s us. That in itself is the most stressful and rewarding part.
This has been a crazy year, and we hear you were foot to the pedal throughout! Tell us about how you kept your brand moving forward during this period.
When COVID hit in March it was the unthinkable. We are a brand that warehouses and ships in-house. We don’t use exterior fulfillment, therefore I had to step in and be the head of fulfillment because our team was quarantined. Luckily, we were deemed essential because we warehouse our products, but that meant I had to be in charge, every day, for the hundreds and hundreds of shipments that needed to go out. Given that people were at home, they were shopping for jewelry like crazy for their Zoom calls. I was the one shipping the products out, by myself, for months.
Wow! What lessons did this time teach you?
It grounded me and made me realize how hard the day-to-day process is for my team. It taught me improvements that could be made in our shipping and logistics department, but also being back in the trenches in a way that I had been out of touch with before COVID. I found it to be a blessing in disguise to be in there and be able to oversee every department, whether it was quality control, inventory control, or restocking, I was the person doing it. I was able to really get a handle on what needed to change, which, if COVID didn’t happen, I would have never had the opportunity to get in there. I think that this time has really helped us a lot as a brand.
Your brand’s whole ethos is rooted in determination and strength. How did you dig deep to stay motivated with everything that’s been happening in the world?
I learned this a long time ago—you have two choices. You can work through it or you can crawl into a hole. Crawling into a hole is not my MO or who I am at all. There really wasn’t a choice. It was just a question of how are we going to pivot and get this done.
You’re a California girl. What part did you grow up in and how did you originally find yourself in NYC?xt
I grew up in Montecito, which is just a small town south of Santa Barbara. I went to the University of South California and studied business marketing, thinking I would end up working on the publishing side of magazines. Little did I know, when I would see racks of clothing going by, I was jealous of everyone that worked in the fashion department and quickly realized that that was where I belonged—not crunching numbers for ad dollars! Luckily, I had a friend who worked at a large production company. I had always loved fashion and one day she mentioned to me that one of her directors was looking for a new stylist. She encouraged me to give it a shot and I went on to be a commercial stylist for 10 years! I thought that was my career for life until one trip I took to New York City, I met a guy named Kevin and my life changed forever. I ended up moving to New York and got married. I had had some health issues and struggled to have a baby. It took years and years trying via surrogacy and IVF. Finally, when it happened, I had a healthy son named Shane. When he was born, people were giving me gifts to represent him that didn’t really feel like me. They didn’t feel chunky enough or cool enough, but felt really delicate—not my personality! Being resourceful and being a stylist, I went up to 47th Street with an idea of what I wanted to do. I drew a really simple dog tag on a piece of paper with his full name and I found someone to make it for me after knocking on many, many doors. I wore it on a very heavy gold chain and would wear it on set when I was styling. Crew members would ask me if I could make them for their wives, or that their wife wanted a charm but she wanted it to be a little different, a different shape. And so I started making pieces for them. I started a website, and Jennifer Fisher was born!
What are your top three favorite things about California versus your top three favorites about NYC?
Los Angeles: The weather, my family is here, the salad assortment at restaurants! New York: the vibe and the people, the food except the salads, and the fashion!
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How would you sum up California style in a sentence?
California style is perfect laid-back sensibility.
We’re playing tourist. Can you let us in on your perfect day in the golden state?
Waking up and having a cup of coffee on the balcony at the Waldorf Astoria. My L.A. home away from home, with a perfect view of Beverly Hills—I can see my store from here! Walking and grabbing a juice on my way to the store from Kreation. Lunch is a chopped salad from La Scala (our neighbors), chocolate snacks from Edelweiss Chocolates, a martini and cheese plate at Wally’s (also our neighbors), followed by in-room delivery of gluten free pizza from Pizzana—my friend Candace Nelson’s restaurant—because it is the best gluten free pizza I have ever had and the Cacio E Pepe. Obviously, my perfect day revolves all around eating (when I am not working!).
Your celebrity fan base is like a who’s who of the A list! But what people in your own life inspired you the most this year?
My children being home quarantined from school, how resilient they’ve been. Watching them grow during this pandemic has been very grounding to see; that we have two incredible human beings we are raising who are empathetic and patient. My husband, Kevin, who is the brains and frugality behind the business. It’s not always easy living with your spouse that you work with because work is 24/7, but we feel like as a team there is nothing we really can’t do together.
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You started your career as a stylist. What has your own style been gravitating towards recently? Are you still getting dressed up or are you leaning into comfy wear?
I have always leaned into comfy clothes. I have never been the type of girl that puts on a dress and boots. I’m the type of girl that wears something cotton on top with jeans and boots because I have an aversion to cashmere—it’s itchy! Yes, I have been wearing a lot more Pangaia every day in matching sets, so much so that my friends make fun of me trying to guess which color I am going to show up in for drinks. Comfy has always been my aesthetic and the greatest thing is the jewelry that we make works with all of it.
What else is new for the Jennifer Fisher brand and what’s coming up in 2021 that you can let us in on?
We were really lucky with the success of our CB2 collaboration. That has been such an amazing and fun project. We were lucky to do a second one that launched just before the holidays. Bouncing off the success of that collaboration, I am excited to announce, for the first time (eeek!), that we will be launching additional items in late summer. So stay tuned for more details on that! During quarantine, I have been home cooking much more than ever. Something we have been building is the recipe section of our website. I am always active on my @jenniferfisherkitchen account where people can stay up to date with whatever I am cooking for family and myself that day. We are going to continue to grow this as the year goes on, and I am definitely headed back to NYC with a lot of inspiration after my California trip for new things to cook.
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