Eddie Borgo was as Neiman Marcus Michigan Avenue last Thursday with a trunk-load of his amazing jewelry. His pieces are poplar with celebrities and art directors, for good reason. They are edgy, cool, modern, unusual yet, familiar, and you can wear his jewelry season after season.
I met Eddie Borgo during his trunk show, where he cheerfully greeted and assisted many of his followers and new fans! He is sweeter than sweet, a southern gentleman from Atlanta who is outgoing, yet very genuine. First I had to ask him about a lock bracelet that our Editor-In-Chief Lauren adores, but was not sure if it was still available.
He quickly retrieved a pave chain bracelet with a large golden locket. “It is probably this one.” It was from a collection from about 2 years ago and is hard-to-find, but it was still available in Chicago that day. He keeps some of the pieces from year-to-year like his cone pave bracelets, but may offer them in different metals and colors. While were were talking he somehow slipped a bracelet on my wrist and, of course I fell madly in love with it. The pieces work with each other and are quite collectible. They are perfect to wear with everything from jeans to gowns, with prices from $300 to $13,000. The pave chain lock bracelet was $1,300, but then I picked up a cool white pyramid stone statement ring that was just under $300.
SCS: I know this sounds cliche, but what is the inspiration behind your jewelry?
Eddie Borgo: The inspiration is hardware, architecture and different iconography from the street. The jewelry is inspired by shapes like studs and spikes, familiar hardware like padlocks and refined by urban culture. It is like you are seeing familiar pieces, but you are seeing something totally new and refined.
SCS: I know that your pieces are popular with celebrities. Can you tell us about some celebrities who recently have been spotted wearing Eddie Borgo?
Eddie Borgo: Yes, Sienna Miller wore a tiara to the Met Gala! And Kelley Osbourn and Lauren Santiago Domingo wore my pieces.
SCS: What I love about your jewelry is that it is quite collectible, it is modern, but not trendy.
Eddie Borgo: Yes, for example padlocks will not go out of style! Paired down geometric shapes will never go out of style, because they’re classics.
SCS: What is the best advice that anyone ever gave you?
Eddie Borgo: Basically to just work hard, stay true to who you are, be focused and stay humble. The first 10 years I was freelancing in New York and it was only me. Now I have 15 employees, which makes it different. Now I am worrying about a team and they are just great! We work together very well.
SCS: You are so personable with your customers, you have a lot of energy and it seems now a designer has to make public appearances and be more than just a designer.
Eddie Borgo: That’s what I mean about being humble. You need to be flexible, I did not think that I would necessarily like all of this…going out to meet the public, but I really do like meeting people, I really enjoy it. I am lucky that a lot of people know the collection and I feel fortunate.
SCS: OK, one last thing: What can you tell us about the hat? Do you always wear hats?
Eddie Borgo: I always wore a hat – since high school. It was one of those things – I felt comfortable in a hat. I wore one hat so long that it was all worn out an tattered, it had been run over by cars! It got so bad that one of my friends stole the hat and took it to Worth & Worth (where I got it) had it remade and had a hat form made for me.
SCS: What will we see in your next collection?
Eddie Borgo: You will see more color: Melachite, a deep green stone, Botsuana Agate a grey-blue multicolor stone. The new collection will be out in the next month or so.
SCS: We can’t wait that long!
Shop Eddie Borgo at Neiman Marcus
– Carol Calacci
Photos: Second City Style