Like most small and medium founder-led businesses in the fashion and accessories sector, 2020 was a wild ride, with 2021 not exactly showing signs of a let-up. Having a bumpy year was undoubtedly true for Jennifer Fisher, founder and creative director of her eponymous jewelry brand. Fisher weathered the storm brilliantly thanks to buckling down and returning to her early entrepreneurial hands-on approach and the runaway success of two key but different items – hoops and cooking salts. The pandemic may have slowed but hasn’t dimmed her next growth phase centered around retail store openings.
Beverly Hills Bound
Fisher and I chatted via phone while she was in Los Angeles tending to her newest venture. Days earlier, she had just opened her second retail post centrally located in Beverly Hills. The jewelry designer raised in Montecito and schooled at USC marked a homecoming by choosing Los Angeles. “My family and husband are from here; I’m a California girl at heart,” said the New York-based jeweler, adding, “but it was also the natural next step to open because our brand data shows that the zip code 90210 is our highest shipping zip code.”
The store, located on North Canyon, sits near the popular Wally’s Bar, La Scala restaurant, a Dry Bar outpost, and the wildly popular Edelweiss chocolate store. “I wanted to be where people go to eat, drink, get their hair done. Like that group that goes to lunch and decides to pop in as they are ‘right there.’ It also doesn’t hurt that she will be in closer contact with Hollywood’s elite, including the stylists who procure stars’ looks.
The Los-Angeles-meets New-York interior vibe was conceived by friend and interior designer Michelle Gerson, borrowing aspects of the New York store and adjusting them to the sunny climate. Luckily for the designer, she found a contractor and project manager all in one. Still, the store was delayed about four months opening due to the Covid-19 health restrictions.
“I knew what I wanted, a light and airy space with the similar brick walls from the moody New York store that were white-washed with well-lit bright white cases,” said Fisher. Eric Butterbaugh’s floral arrangements will sit atop a marble coffee table that is part of her CB2 furniture collaboration. The store will carry exclusive items such as the return of the circle charms back from the brands’ early days as well as lock pendants and diamond charms spelling out Los Angeles.
Already Fisher has had visits from fans of the brand asking for an outpost in Orange County, another popular delivery spot for her bold costume jewelry hoops and personalized fine jewelry charms. Fans of the brand have even asked about Miami. She and her husband, CEO Kevin Fisher, are currently honing-in on a space in Soho for a third store and eyeing opportunities in Dallas and Houston, again hot spots for the brand.
Fisher is used to this kind of direct fan feedback as the designer who launched her brand in 2006 still tends to the social media content and answers every DM herself. Her Instagram is highly shoppable – an early adopter to the new method – and her personal touch is priceless.
A few years ago, the brand made a conscious effort to pull back some of its wholesale activity and make a DTC push digitally. They achieved this via robust social media channels and a website, which recently added an online store appointment booking feature to speak to Covid-19 safety measures, which are fully in place at both stores to include temperature checks and maximum capacities according to square feet. Their digital presence was one way the brand was uniquely positioned to weather the pandemic.
As businesses were forced to close except for owners, Fisher buckled down and re-trained herself on the packaging, plating processes, order fulfillment and shipping. “We are a unique brand in that we did almost everything in-house from quality control to warehousing to fulfillment.
“My husband Kevin, the CEO and I were the only ones allowed to go into the office and store, but I was more familiar with the actual jewelry,” she said. It was quiet at first, but then she realized her business, especially the hoops, was picking…
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