There’s nothing I love more than the perfect pair of gold hoops. And Jennifer Fisher is designing more pairs of perfect hoops than anyone else in jewelry. A favorite among the fashion set, you can find Jennifer Fisher designs on everyone from Tracee Ellis Ross to Jennifer Lopez to Bella Hadid. We sat down to talk with her about how she got started designing jewelry, how cooking is her therapy, and why 40 is the new 30.
Name, Age, where do you live?
Jennifer Fisher, 48, New York City
Give us an overview of your career.
I was born and raised in Santa Barbara, California. I began my career as a wardrobe stylist working on feature films, television shows, and commercials in both New York and Los Angeles. After ten years of dressing and styling Hollywood, I met my husband, Kevin, and we settled in New York City, where my company is now based.
You were a stylist before you started designing jewelry. How did you get into jewelry design? When did you realize you wanted your own line?
After college, I worked as a wardrobe stylist for 10 years for national ad campaigns like American Express and Budweiser. It wasn’t glamourous but paid better than fashion jobs – I had teams of girls working for me and could easily juggle two, three and even four jobs at a time. I was living and styling in NYC for an LA based director, when I was diagnosed with a desmoid tumor. I went through multiple rounds of chemotherapy, to shrink my tumor, all the while working on ad jobs. This is when my husband Kevin, who you may know through my Instagram stories, proposed to me. He actually popped the question on Halloween night right before we were about to throw a big party. Ten months later, we were married in Santa Barbara.
When we wanted to have children, my oncologist didn’t think it was a good idea for me to carry a baby because my tumor grows from estrogen – so we went through the process of hiring a surrogate to carry for us in California. After multiple rounds of IVF where our surrogate was pregnant twice and miscarried twice, we came back to New York and we decided to try IVF on our own, against my doctor’s orders. Unsuccessful yet again, my doctors recommended that we adopt or get an egg donor. I needed a break from it all and took the summer off. That’s when I became pregnant with my son Shane, naturally. Against the wishes of my oncologist I carried my baby. After a perfectly healthy pregnancy and baby boy later, I learned that my tumor had actually shrunk from my pregnancy.
After Shane was born, I began receiving jewelry gifts to represent him in the form of single letters that were very dainty and weren’t very me. Shane’s birth was a major deal for us, I wanted something to wear that represented him in a way that felt like me and expressed my personal style. When I couldn’t find it, I decided to go up to 47th street in Manhattan and design and produce something myself. I designed a dog tag charm with Shane’s named stamped on the front that I styled with a long, thick link chain. I didn’t take it off. I wore my dog tag on set while styling and started to get multiple requests for the same necklace. A hair stylist friend of mine was working with Uma Thurman at the time and suggested I make something for Uma that represented her kids. She ended up wearing it on the cover of Glamour Magazine and Jennifer Fisher Jewelry was born
What unexpected challenges did you face, creating your own company in this new field?
Oh, my god, so many challenges — are you kidding me? I remember sitting outside of magazines, they wouldn’t let me through the door. They’d say to me, “Oh, you’re never going to make it with this type of jewelry. Good luck.” I love seeing those people now. [laughs] Whenever you start your own business, it’s so hard. The jewelry’s not for everyone; that’s why there’s a million different jewelry designers. Everyone resonates with someone different, but for anyone that doesn’t resonate with you, there’s 10 more people that do. You can’t take it personally and you can’t get upset about it. Managing growth. It has been incredibly hard, but rewarding, to take something that I started in my bedroom and grow it into a multi-million-dollar business.
Your hoop earrings are named after friends. Can you tell us a little bit about them?
The Samira Hoop is after Samira Nasr, who is the Fashion Director of Elle Magazine. Samira is a longtime supporter of my brand and when I made my first pair of gold earrings, she was one of my first customers who bought them. It was a simple seamless wire gold hoop that ran front to back that looked like there was no end – basically an eternity hoop. Since then, Samira has requested our hoops on most of her shoots. I had Sade on my mood board for over two years so when I finally decided to create the hollow signature hoop again in our version in a little bit larger size it only seemed fitting to name it after Samira.
I have been lucky to have the support editors who shoot my jewelry for magazine covers and stylists who place pieces on their celebrity clients. As we have grown the hoop offering, I chose to name the different styles after these individuals who have supported me along the way.
Style changes so much as you get older. How would you say you describe yours? How has it changed?
I always was that girl that was more into fashion than all my friends — so much so that when I was in high school, my mom got me subscriptions to Vogue and British Vogue, because she was super-supportive of me. She’d drive me down to Melrose to go shopping for clothes; my style was always changing and evolving so I was definitely one of those girls in school that was a fashion girl. I grew up in kind of a beach town and it made me different. I’d go and I’d buy vintage stuff and I’d embellish it with patches and do all kinds of crazy stuff.
Jeans, jeans and jeans. I like denim. I wear a lot of denim I wear a lot of men’s shirts. I keep it pretty clean and classic. If I had to pick three words to describe my style, I would say – utilitarian, clean and minimal.
I normally pick what jewelry I’m going to wear before I get dressed. Like I know that one night if I’m going to wear certain large earrings and I have an idea of what top I’m going to wear, it normally is focused around jeans. That’s pretty much what I wear every day, day to night. I keep it simple and change my shoes.
What’s your favorite piece of jewelry you’ve designed?
My JF burnished cuff with my family equation – J+K = S&D
Social media is such a big part of the fashion industry now. Do you ever feel conflicted about it? Do you try to limit your time or do you love it?
Over the past couple of years, I started trusting my gut more and putting my real self out there with both my jewelry and social media. For example, I am a mother; I am not perfect. I do things like take my kids to school and walk my dog. That mindset really changed our business. Especially on social media, it’s important to show yourself even if it’s not this polished, perfect version
You’ve also started making salt! What made you pivot into salt, as opposed to other accessories?
I always say I don’t go to therapy, I cook. As my business has grown, I’ve wanted to explore other facets of lifestyle separate from the world of accessories. In 2017, we expanded into the food category and launched our first product, Jennifer Fisher Universal Salt. Ironically, JF Universal Salt all started because I was frustrated by the limited choices in specialty stores for an organic prep and finishing universal herb salt not containing onion or garlic to season my eggs, salads and meats. So, I set out to make my own, just as I had done so many years ago with my first dog tag. We currently sell three finishing/seasoning salts with more to come.
Culturally, aging is viewed as this sad thing. In reality, I don’t know about you, but I certainly don’t feel bad or sad. I feel better than ever. What’s the key to changing the conversation about aging?
Honestly, I think 40s are the new 30s. With all of the self-care and beauty and everything we are doing for ourselves we are very much slowing down the process. I go to Pat Wexler, I inject my face. I do all the stuff that I need to do. I wear hair extensions, IDGAF. No shame in hiding it. I hate when people lie about that stuff. Everybody does it!! The important thing is to be completely open about talking about it.
What’s the best thing you’ve read lately?
I don’t have time to read, my reading time goes into working out these days. I run my own business; I am a hands-on mom to my kids. Any free time I have goes into caring for them. The most I’ll ever get to do is listen to a podcast.
What’s your go-to hostess gift?
Jennifer Fisher Salt Trio
Who would play you in the movie of your life?
What’s the last thing you bought online?
This black Khaite dress I am currently wearing.
What would you put on your menopause registry?
If you could have one superpower what would it be?
Be invisible. I would like to fly too. I think that would be very cool.
If you had a warning label what would it say?
Doesn’t have the pause button.
Shop some of our favorite Jennifer Fisher pieces below: