Manju Jasty — lucky girl — has been collecting fine jewelry practically since birth. “In Indian culture, if you’re a girl from a traditional family, they start building a jewelry trousseau as soon as you’re born,” says Jasty, who was born in India and grew up on Long Island. “There’s a very different mentality there. Anytime you go to a wedding or a big party, people get decked out in their jewels, whereas here, people tend to hold back unless it’s their event.” Indeed, Jasty, who launched her own collection of fine jewelry inspired by her native land in 2006, found that elaborate traditional pieces didn’t quite mesh with her Western wardrobe, particularly in her professional life in finance. “As a girl in banking, you try not to draw attention to yourself, but you still want to be feminine and fashionable,” says Jasty, who worked in structured finance at Barclays Capital in New York before going into design full-time. “So I would make earrings for myself that weren’t too obvious.” And she would channel her bonus money into her designs.
“Some people take a big trip or buy something special for themselves. I would always make a piece for myself,” she says. In fact, Jasty has dabbled in design for years. Burned out from banking, she handed in her resignation in 2005 and headed back to India to navigate the insider network of jewelry artisans with the help of her gem-loving aunts. The resulting collection is full of show-stopping pieces, all in yellow and white gold, with ornate gem details fit for a modern maharani. The jewelry is steeped in Indian tradition — consider the peacock bangle, inspired by India’s national bird. And while price tags are hefty — Jasty’s suggested retail prices range from $4,000 for a thin white gold and diamond bangle, to $110,000 for a chunky Japanese coral and diamond necklace — the actual designs aren’t.
“My pieces are so much lighter than anything you would typically find in India,” says Jasty, who worked with craftsmen to achieve the desired weights in classic motifs. “In the beginning, they were like, ‘What is this kid trying to do?’ so there was a bit of push and pull. But now they see that it can work, having just enough gold to hold the gems.”
If Jasty had any doubts about leaving finance for the world of fine jewelry, she was vindicated when Barneys New York picked up her collection in fall 2007 after a couple of chance meetings with fashion director Julie Gilhart, whom she met at a Lanvin trunk show the very day she resigned from Barclays. A few months later, the two women ran into each other at a cocktail party. “Julie asked me what I was working on, and I said, ‘I’m not exactly sure, but today, I’m a jewelry designer.’”
In yet another fashion show shuffle, @elleryland is moving its show in sync with the Paris couture calendar — though the brand is still keeping one foot on the city’s ready-to-wear schedule. Their runway show in January will coincide with the launch of a new strategy: designing two main collections each year instead of four, which will then be released in four drops. “As we all know, the system needs to change. We need to show sooner to give time back to artisans and designers to do what they do best — create,” said founder Kym Ellery. #wwdnews #wwdfashion (📷: @kukukuba)
@maxmara’s classic 101801 coat was the cornerstone of its pre-fall 2018 collection. The design team expanded the traditional double-breasted, kimono-sleeved style into a trapeze coat, lean belted styles and a peacoat and presented them in monochromatic looks – like the camel one pictured here. #wwdfashion #prefall18 (📷: George Chinsee)
The @cfda has shifted the dates of #NYFW, with Men’s showing on February 5 through February 7, and Women’s will directly follow, running from February 8 through 14. The preliminary schedule will be released on the CFDA’s web site in the next few days, but Mark Beckham, VP of marketing for the CFDA, revealed that @rafsimons will be back to close the men’s-specific part of the week with a show on February 7 #wwdfashion (📷: Kelly Taub)
@ferragamo is introducing a new space dedicated to the development of women’s and men’s leather good samples. The laboratory, which is created eco-friendly materials and designed to reduce the environmental impact of the manufacturing processes, will allow the company to expand its accessories offering through traditional artisanal approaches. #wwdfashion (📷: @aitorrosasphoto)
How does a “regular, degular, schmegular” girl from the Bronx, N.Y., become a Grammy-nominated artist with a certified platinum record in less than a year? Call it the @iamcardib come up. The 25-year-old has become a musical sensation, and the fashion world is taking note. “If I could describe her style I would say drama. She’s really into the dramatics,” says Cardi B’s stylist @kollincarter. See how Carter styles her bold and out there looks with the link in bio. #wwdfashion
“There is no formula. There is no guideline. I can watch Ted Talks all day, but there is no one who can advise me on exactly what it is I should be doing,” said @ronniefieg, CEO of @kith, in an interview with WWD’s @ariahughes at the brand’s new SoHo office in Manhattan. Head to WWD.com to see how Fieg went from hanging out in shoe stockrooms at 13 to building his own business. #wwdfashion (📷: @weston.wells)
@fearofgod and @maxfieldla have teamed up on a pop-up installation. The store, located in the gallery space across from Maxfield’s Melrose Ave location, is the site of the brand’s House of God pop-up in which Fear of God founder @jerrylorenzo has created a church-inspired installation. A dozen vintage church pews sit in front of an LED screen playing 90s gospel singers in an effort to re-create an environment akin to a Southern Baptist Church, Lorenzo explained. Read more about the pop-up on WWD.com #wwdfashion (📷: Jennifer Johnson)
Known for his sleek, sophisticated American glamour, Norman Norell is the subject of an upcoming exhibition at @fitnyc. “Norell: Dean of American Fashion,” which runs from February 9 through April 14, will feature approximately 100 ensembles and accessories. His best work is exemplified by the designer’s glittering “mermaid” gowns frosted with thousands of hand-sewn sequins – like the one pictured. (📷: William Helburn) #wwdfashion
For pre-fall 2018, @balmain didn’t let go of the glitz. A crystal embroidered baseball jacket priced at around $40,000 hangs in the “couture” section of the brand’s first men’s pre-collection. Sporting the words “Balmain Army” across the back, the item took around two months to make. “When it was completed, it was like Christmas, it was like, ‘It’s done, it’s exactly what I wanted,’” said Balmain’s creative director @olivier_rousteing during a tour of the collection in a Paris showroom on Monday. #wwdfashion