Lana Bramlette knows exactly what goes best with her gold and diamond jewelry. “Just Add Skin,” her trademarked message for over 20 years, glimmers in white neon lights in her newly opened eponymous boutique in Winnetka, Illinois.
The “jewel box” ambience reflects the brand DNA. “It’s super sexy and very shiny,” says Bramlette of the boutique she designed from floor to ceiling. “Everything — from the jewelry to the cases to the walls — sparkles in gold.”
Bramlette began her career in fashion, but at 27 years old, she hit a transition point. “I was finally earning money and wanted to buy something that wasn’t trendy or costume jewelry. No one was making a great hoop earring at an attainable price point.”
In 2002, she launched Lana Jewelry. “We were the first line that really broke the barrier of creating a gold, thin, airy hoop that was under $300 [and] could be purchased at Neiman Marcus or Fred Segal.” Deceptively simple but with “a little extra to it,” the “thread-through hoop crisscrosses on the bottom,” she says.
Bramlette, who counts many A-Listers as fans, continues to design for the “cool girl” — working women and jewelry self-purchasers. “The majority of our clients make something happen every day, whether they are celebrities, lawyers, or FBI agents. Their confidence is the coolness aspect,” she explains, drawing a distinction with women who wear jewelry to showcase wealth.
The majority of our clients make something happen every day, whether they are celebrities, lawyers, or FBI agents.
Bramlette thought her first store would be in New York or Los Angeles, but Winnetka, an affluent and sophisticated suburb of Chicago, is her neighborhood as well as home to many of her most loyal clients.
She designs approximately 100 to 200 pieces a season but makes sure not to compete with her retail partners, which include prestige department stores and specialty boutiques. She also designs jewelry for men under her Lana Man collection. Her 13-year-old daughter, Blake, has created Lana Girl, a line for teens.
Expansion to other locales is “definitely on horizon,” as is branching out to include accessories, home goods and fashion, says Bramlette. “Our sun-kissed jewelry is incredibly sexy and fun. It’s really jewelry for everyone,” she remarks. “There is an ease to wearing our jewelry so that it’s not just part of your wardrobe, but part of your entire being.”
Main image: From left: Lana Bramlette; inside Lana Jewelry store in Winnetka, Illinois. (Lana Jewelry)
This article is from the September-October 2023 issue of Rapaport Magazine. View other articles here.