We had the pleasure of meeting and interviewing one of our favorite local jewelry designers, Samantha Levine of Auburn Jewelry. Mark your Calendars!!! Samantha will return to Vineyard Vines Greenwich, July 27th and July 28th from 10am to 6pm.
You are celebrating 5 years since the launch of Auburn Jewelry, what continues to serve as your inspiration?
I absolutely love dreaming up pieces for our new production line, whether it’s a new design for one of our signature pendants or something completely new, like our heart pattern cuff bracelets (coming this fall!). It’s amazing to see the line grow, and the ability to mass produce means I can introduce Auburn Jewelry to a wider audience. There are always new trends in fashion and accessories, and it’s exciting to be able to translate trends for clients. For instance, tiny jewelry is big right now, and last week I hand crafted a very dainty color dot bracelet to layer with our monogram bracelets.
I’m also inspired by my customers and their interests and hobbies. I love creating pieces that are personalized and make someone smile. Recently I handcrafted a chicken silhouette pendant for a customer to give their good friend who works at a local farm. It’s nice to be able to give someone something special that they can’t find anywhere else.
What is your proudest moment?
There have been a lot of proud moments lately, but I’d have to say seeing my new production line in its first three stores, LOLA NY in White Plains, ICD in Chappaqua and Beginnings Boutique in Scarsdale is on the top of the list. It is an incredible feeling to see the production pieces on their custom fixture that I designed in beautiful boutiques. I feel like I have to pinch myself every time I see it in person.
Going into production took 2 years and lots of research and hard work. I knew I wanted to keep everything made in the United States. Currently our pieces are created in NYC and Rhode Island. Having my line mass produced is truly a dream come true.
It’s also been an amazing experience to host Pop-Up Shops at J. Crew and Vineyard Vines. I love to interact with my customers and help them pick out the perfect gift or piece of jewelry for themselves. We have our second show with Vineyard Vines coming up on July 27 & 28th on Greenwich Ave!
What tips do you recommend for women who are trying to manage all aspects of entrepreneurship?
Having your own business is both exhilarating and all consuming. It’s hard not to work at it 24/7 but I think it’s important to take a break occasionally to clear your mind and refocus. As I’m writing this I’m realizing that I don’t follow my own advice too often. But every time I take a few days off I come back with new ideas and a fresh outlook.
It’s also critical to write everything down and stay organized. I’m a one-woman show and I make lots of lists to stay on task to ensure I’m making progress on both short-term projects and long-term goals.
What are the new design trends in jewelries?
One of the biggest trends in fashion now is personalization and customization. Everyone is looking for something that represents who they are, whether it’s a necklace with their initial in their favorite color, or a pair of sneakers custom made just for them. My new production line is customizable. Customers can choose their favorite design, color and chain. I also still offer my handcrafted line of jewelry where I work with clients one-on-one to design signature pieces—everything from logos to monograms to pet silhouettes.
Tell us something about yourself that we don’t already know.
I’ve been handcrafting jewelry since I was 14 years old. I saw kids using a blow torch on my tour of Horace Greeley High School when I was in eighth grade and thought to myself, “I want to do that!” Being practical, I ended up pursuing a law degree, but half way through law school, I missed making jewelry so much that I set up a metals studio in my house and launched Auburn Jewelry. Luckily the business took off and I never had to practice law. I’ve been working at Auburn Jewelry fulltime since graduation and couldn’t be happier!
Visit auburnjewelry.com to see Samantha’s latest collections!