By  on May 21, 2007

LOS ANGELES — If customers are not sure how to wear Dominique Cohen's jewelry, all they have to do is glance at her.

Casual in jeans and a silk tank during a tour of her namesake store on Robertson Boulevard here, Cohen wore floral lace 18-karat rose gold necklaces in a long strand down her stomach and doubled around her neck. A mix of rose gold bangles and chain bracelets was on her wrist, and a large cocktail ring shone on a finger.

The look, trendy as well as classic and showcasing the multiple ways the jewelry can be worn, is representative of Cohen's brand. It's also strategic, as Cohen cultivates her line with the goal of turning it into a lifestyle brand through two new stores, a deal with Target and a foray into handbags as elements of her expanding reach.

"Our selling philosophy is that there is versatility for your investment," she said. "You can mix and match your pieces and collect them over a 10-year, 20-year span. Many more women are interested now in accessories and having a handbag wardrobe and a shoe wardrobe. We want to be the jewelry wardrobe."

To help customers build that wardrobe, Cohen presents her full range in the branded stores, from earrings, starting at $600, to $35,000 custom necklaces. The Robertson Boulevard location bowed last month. Cohen had an appointment-only atelier on the same street for seven years.

A 1,250-square-foot store in Manhattan, at Madison Avenue and East 65th Street, is scheduled to open in October.

The theme of the Los Angeles space, designed with the architecture firm Studio Davis, is a modern cabinet of wonders. Monochromatic, light wood covers almost every inch of the 1,100-square-foot interior. The same wood rims jewelry cases in the center of the space, although jewelry is also encased in the walls.

"When you are displaying jewelry, visually it has to be pretty simple because you really want people to look at the jewelry individually," Cohen said. "So, we tried to keep it clean and tight."

The Manhattan store will be similarly designed.

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