By Rachel Bosworth
Fall is close, and that’s okay. Though beach days may be dwindling and we’ll soon be swapping tanks and tees for sweaters, autumn has its own unique advantages. It’s harvest season on the East End, festivals and fairs celebrate the post-season, and then there’s always coveted fall fashion. In tune with global trends and timeless mainstays, jewelry designer Stella Flame says this season we can expect to see a comeback in altered jewelry styles, more embellishment and symbolism, new and fresh takes on earrings, and more. Inside her Sag Harbor store, patrons will find an otherworldly collection of meaningful designs throughout the seasons.
“Thank you, Gucci for bringing back embellishment with a vengeance,” Ms. Flame says of one trend she admires. “Gucci’s success employing an abundance of embroidery, jewels and symbols has ensured the embellishment trend continues through Fall 2017 and beyond. That’s great because that is totally my comfort zone. Narrative ornamentation rife with symbolism is my niche. My happiest creative moments invariably involve creating visual narratives across all fine jewelry categories.”
A signature collection found at Stella Flame are the Story Chains and Short Story Bangles. Customizable pieces adorned with jeweled symbols allow clients to create their own unique story through personalized necklaces and bracelets. Ms. Flame notes that existing clients may even add second and third chains as layering has become a popular trend. The collection embodies the designer’s inspiration of the elements and travel, and highlights the interchangeable styles.
Eclectic styles of earrings have been in, with hoop earrings and dusters at the forefront. The jewelry designer shares that mismatched earrings or buying a matched pair with an extra earring is ideal to mix up looks and styles. “Hoops harken to an earlier time and clients find some source of solace in the familiar in these uncertain times even when reworked in unexpected combinations,” Ms. Flame explains. “There’s something soothing about imperfection.” Another resurgence? Pinky rings and ankle bracelets.
Reminiscent of decades past, these styles are getting a fresh update as rings have always been a mainstay in jewelry adornments. Ms. Flame’s styles incorporate traditional elaborate monograms, and enamel filled tattoo engravings with high quality brilliant diamonds. Statement rings are also on trend, as well as an increase in wedding bands at the request of the designer’s clients.
Ankle bracelets increased in popularity over the summer season and will continue into the fall as mules and slides will be a choice footwear style as the leaves fall. “Mine are offered in 14K in chains of varying widths and embellished with diamond or sapphire studded teardrops, pave butterflies and petite bars,” says Ms. Flame of ankle bracelet designs. “An all 14K version features three moveable ‘fat free’ gold ‘donuts’ on a whisper thin chain aptly named ‘The Dreesen!’”
Both men’s and women’s brooches have been a strong niche for Stella Flame, citing familiarity and timelessness evoking a sense of nostalgia for many. Pearls are a favorite in Ms. Flame’s designs as well. “There’s something elemental about pearls,” the designer shares. “A delicate strand is often the first ‘real’ piece of jewelry many of us received, and seeing and wearing pearls in a new way comforts on several levels.”
Honing in on her selection to focus on jewelry, art, and carefully curated fashion and accessories, Ms. Flame continues to focus on sophisticated, artisan made pieces. Shoppers can expect beaded scarves, Portuguese Vista Alegre hand blown crystal and gold leaf home décor, and a new collection of her own jewelry in tandem with her upcoming Museum of Arts and Design collection in New York City.
“This summer a number of businesses at our end of town often stayed open until 10 and 11 p.m., including Relax and The Annyx all located at 150 Main Street, and we enjoyed a good amount of traffic and sales,” Ms. Flame says. “We’ll have expanded hours for the holidays as well. We want to keep Sag Harbor a vibrant retail destination year-round and hope that the community will shop locally and support our efforts.”
The store, which began showcasing a guest jeweler each month, with the first being fellow featured fine jeweler at the Museum of Arts and Design, Stephanie Albertson, will also continue events in the garden including tarot card readings with medium Maya Ruiz, also known as “Sapphire Maya,” and art gallery shows. Stella Flame will be open daily through Columbus Day.
Stella Flame is located at 150 Main Street in Sag Harbor. For more information, visit stellaflamejewelry.com.