MALI

Designer: Molly Sabatasso

Backstory: Despite the fact that she'd spent years in the industry working on the business side at companies like Lucky Brand Jeans, Jennifer Nicholson and Jenni Kayne, it was actually an ill-fated shopping trip in New York two years ago that led Molly Sabatasso to accessories design. She was with a group that included Kayne, the Olsen twins and Amanda Anka (aka Mrs. Jason Bateman) when, put off by their spendthrift ways, she went off on her own. "Each of them was trying to one-up the other," recalls the L.A.-based Sabatasso, 35. "It got to the point where it was so gluttonous, I couldn't take it." Soon Sabatasso found herself in a bead-and-stone shop in SoHo, where she bought some supplies. She spent the rest of the day holed up in her hotel room making jewelry, and Mali was born.

Collection: "There are so many lines out there that are, like, skulls and crossbones, you know, rock star," the designer says. "I wanted to refocus on nature." To that end, her collection incorporates materials like semiprecious stones, sea life, flora, as well as her newest obsession: butterflies, which she encases in pendants and belt buckles. The lepidoptera, of course, come from butterfly farms rather than the wild.

Stats: The butterfly necklaces wholesale for $165 and the belts, $195, while the rest of the pieces range in price from $75 to $125. Retailers include Jamie in Malibu and Intermix and Calypso in New York.
— Venessa Lau


SPEAR

Designer: Oren Shepher

Backstory: Los Angeles born and bred, accessories designer Oren Shepher, 28, got into fashion the Hollywood way: through costume design. While working wardrobe on films, television, commercials and music videos, he attended California's Fashion Institute of Design & Merchandising and ran his own Sunset Boulevard boutique for a bit. His accessories career began with a copy of "Jewelry Making for Dummies" and a few pieces that immediately sold to friends. "I thought, 'I'm kind of tired of apparel,'" says Shepher. "And the bottom line is accessories go with everything." His women's collection, inspired by a chandelier discovered at a Paris flea market, launched in April. It featured a mix of gold chains, pearls and velvet bows. Shepher has since expanded into belts. "They're like jewelry for your waist," he says.Collection: Spear features thick, double- and triple-buckle leather belts; "ghetto-fabulous," 24-karat gold door-knocker earrings, and more delicate Parisian chandelier styles.

Stats: Spear is sold at Fred Segal in Los Angeles, Atrium in New York and Isetan in Japan. Wholesale prices range from $32 for earrings to $1,100 for a necklace.
— Jessica Iredale


MARLEY

Designer: Donna M. Abbruzzese

Backstory: How's this for the circuitous route to design: After graduating from Johnson & Wales University, Abbruzzese, 31, indulged her wanderlust by accepting a job with an airline that took her all over the world. Several trips to Paris' shopping promenade Rue Saint-Honoré got her creative juices flowing. "Flea market shopping and basically rummaging through other people's garbage has always been a little hobby of mine," says the New Yorker, who still keeps her airline job. As it happened, she has an uncle in the jewelry casting business who persuaded her to put some ideas together and the rest is history.

Collection: The six-month-old collection includes about 80 14-karat gold-, rose gold- and sterling-silver-plated styles. Positive Meaning bangles are engraved with inspirational words such as "happy," "lucky" and "inspired." More robust styles include honeycomb-shape flowers — inspired by an antique chandelier Abbruzzese found in Paris — that appear on gold-plated chains and chunky leather cuffs, some painted in pop colors like cobalt, cherry red, white and black. "It's paint that's used for race cars and rocket ships," says Abbruzzese. "So there's lots of high shine."

Stats: Marley is carried at Fred Segal Rocks and Ice Accessories in Los Angeles and other boutiques. Wholesale prices range from $9 for a stackable ring to $38 for the Positive Meaning cuffs.
— J.I.

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