Jean Michel Basquiat is my favorite artist. When you see one of his paintings, you automatically recognize it. Though many have tried to imitate his work, no one has ever been able to recreate the passion that Basquiat brought to his craft.
I feel exactly the same way about Alexis Bittar. If you’ve ever held a piece of his jewelry in your hand, you know that each piece he designs is truly a work of art. I’ve been a fan since I was first introduced to his collection when I worked at Neiman Marcus. Every time a new shipment of Alexis Bittar jewelry came in, I would literally squeal with delight and try on every piece. (And don’t even get me started on how much I love his ad campaigns, which have featured everyone from Edina & Patsy from Absolutely Fabulous to the legendary Joan Collins and this year’s brand ambassador, the stunning Ines-Loan Rau.)
Imagine my reaction when I was asked by Harper’s Bazaar magazine to sample his fall collection. Then imagine what happened when they told me I would get to pick out $1,000 worth of jewelry at the Alexis Bittar Soho shop.
The most fascinating thing about the store in Soho (aside from the jewelry, of course), is the fact that it is just a few blocks away from where Alexis first started selling jewelry in the 1980’s. From a fold-out table at St. Mark’s place to four boutiques in Manhattan and 34 countries around the world, he is now (rightly) proclaimed as one of the greatest jewelry designers of the 21st century.
When I stepped into the Soho store on Monday evening, my heart started to palpitate. Case after case of the most exquisite jewelry beckoned me. Thankfully Justin, the Alexis Bittar associate (who is cuter than that Timberlake guy), was there to help. When I told him I knew I wanted clip-on earrings, he pulled out a tray of every pair they had in the store.
After a half-hour of me going from case to case exclaiming, “I love this! I love that! How am I supposed to choose?” I finally chose. Here are the five pieces of exquisiteness that were my favorites.
Dark Phoenix Winding Vine Clip Earrings
Dark Phoenix Crystal Encrusted Fox Ring
Imperial Crystal Lace Cocktail Ring
Crystal Encrusted Gold Horseshoe Necklace
Silver Dust Lucite Ring (not available online)
So I walked away with five amazing Alexis Bittar pieces. But actually, I walked away with a lot more than that. This is the start of a beautiful collection – a collection that one day I will pass down to my nieces, Hannah & Sydney. They are always telling me how much they love my style. One day, I hope they’ll be able to wear these pieces and think of me. I’m sure when they experience the heart palpitations, they’ll want to start a collection of their own.
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