Margaret Rowe creator of Margaret Rowe Couture Jewelry & Accessories at her Montana Avenue apartment. Photo by Westside People
From celebrities to the Home Shopping Network, the stunning jewelry by Margaret Rowe is showing up everywhere
By David Rosenfeld
When the stars hit the red carpet, what they’re wearing and who designed it becomes big news. For jewelry designers like Margaret Rowe, there’s no bigger prize than the red carpet at the Academy Awards. In the weeks leading up to the star-studded event, lobbying among celebrity stylists can be intense.
“It becomes a big competition,” said Rowe, the creator of Margaret Rowe Couture Jewelry and Accessories. “But that’s only if you have the opportunity to get in front of certain people.”
In this game – like many others – it’s much about who you know, and Rowe knows a lot of people. More than 10 women from the Academy of Motion Picture Arts and Sciences – including its chief marketing officer – donned Rowe’s jewelry during the recent Oscars. The daughters of 12 Years a Slave film editor Joe Walker also wore some of her pieces.
On other occasions, Heidi Klum, Jennifer Lopez, Jane Lynch, Molly Sims and others have worn her jewelry on red carpets or in magazines. Maria Menounos wore a piece on Access Hollywood recently, and the CEO of Fashion TV said she plans to wear Rowe’s jewelry to several upcoming events.
“I don’t think celebrities wearing your pieces make you an instant success, but it certainly helps,” Rowe said from the Montana Avenue apartment shared with her husband Brett. This is where she designs and creates every piece by hand.
When it comes to her process, she said she has little pre-thought other than some initial inspiration.
“It’s very much like any art form. You just start creating,” she said. “To get noticed in the fashion industry you have to be doing something different. I love seeing the pieces on women as they come to life.”
Rowe’s work is characterized by a vintage style. When she first started, she adapted several pieces from the 1930s she calls her heirloom collection. She’s since transitioned into new designs that have a vintage feel made with crystals, pearls and other precious stones. Her designs are also admired for their size, sometimes three-dimensional.
Now, her jewelry is more accessible than ever before as she recently created a new line for the Home Shopping Network with pieces all under $200.
Margaret Rowe Couture wrist bands. Photo by Westside People
“The whole point is to make this sort of red carpet, special occasion, and decadent look available to every woman,” Rowe said. “Every woman is a star and deserves to look like a celebrity and wear what celebrities are wearing.”
Rowe had left a successful career in advertising when she caught her first break in 2002 at a local party. Actress Tia Carrere was there and she noticed the ring Rowe was wearing. It was a large design that would become the type of statement jewelry for which she’d become known. The next thing Rowe knew, Carrere asked if she took credit cards. It was the first piece she ever sold.
“I just enjoy jewelry and the process so much,” she said. “I love seeing the pieces on women and how they come to life.”
She also frequently donates her pieces to charity auctions where they can fetch far above the normal asking price. Lauren Selman, publicity manager of the Academy of Motion Picture Arts and Sciences said Rowe’s jewelry makes her feel like a Hollywood star.
“Her vintage elegance and modern creativity come together to create pieces that are one-of-a-kind, feminine and stunning,” Selman said. “I have worn her pieces to several events and I loved them, each and every time.”
Though charmed it might seem, her success did not happen overnight. She persevered when times were slow. It took more than a year, for instance, corresponding with executives at HSN before she finally presented her jewelry. In February she appeared for the second time on the network, which airs from Florida.
“Every time I’ve been discouraged, it seems that afternoon or that morning someone big will call me or some major press or celebrity stylist will respond,” she said. “It’s a message to keep doing it. Really no matter what you do, if you keep going, eventually you will find success.”
For more on Margaret Rowe Couture Jewelry and Accessories visit MargaretRowe.com