By Randi Molofsky
Gemologist and designer, Lisa Bridge, has been around fine jewelry and gemstones her entire life. As a fifth generation member of the Seattle-based Ben Bridge empire (70 stores and counting across the United States!), she knows a thing or two about what kind of accessories women want to wear, and luckily enough, she has the right connections (wink, wink) to design her version of statement jewelry at accessible price points. We spoke to Lisa about how her collection came to be, and what’s next for the brand.
Jewelry is definitely in your blood. What is it like to be a fifth generation jeweler?
It is a tremendous joy to have spent my life dreaming of jewelry! Growing up, it was what we talked about around the dinner table and our spring break trips were spent visiting stores. Being in business with my family is wonderful, I get to learn from them and share in the business that they have built.
Lisa Bridge Angular Moss Agate Necklace in Sterling Silver
Why did you decide to earn your gemology degree and move into design?
I believe in professionalism and I knew that I needed the best knowledge to achieve it. I sought my gemological titles to gain a base of knowledge that I am constantly building upon.
Your collection uses gemstones in 14k gold and silver. What is your design process like and what stones and silhouettes are you loving right now?
Every piece of jewelry has a different journey. Sometimes I am inspired by a particular stone – for example, I found a wonderfully shaped piece of lapis in Tucson last year. It was almost a guitar-pick shape. I took that piece of lapis home and stared at it dreaming of what it could become. I designed a suite of jewelry using this unusual shape and customers have really responded to it!
The other way I find inspiration is in experiencing incredible places. I love gazing at a beautiful vista of mountains, trees, and water. I find ideas in the shapes and colors that I see. Traveling is one of my favorite things and now trying to capture the essence of amazing places is a delicious challenge!
Lisa Bridge Malachite Ring in Sterling Silver
What have the reactions from your customers been to your line?
I feel deeply gratified that customers have embraced the collection. I am encouraged by people who come back to purchase a second or third piece having loved what they already have. Having my creations become part of people’s lives is truly a wonderful gift.
Lisa Bridge Chalcedony & Agate Hoop Earrings in Sterling Silver
What’s next for the LB collection?
I am excited to be introducing a new collection this fall full of new inspiration, colors, and gemstones!