Today we’d like to introduce you to Brooke Benson.
Brooke, please share your story with us. How did you get to where you are today?
I’m actually a 3rd generation LA local. My grandmother came to the States from Europe and made her living from embroidering beautiful dresses, covers and table clothes and moved to LA in the 1940’s. I think working with my hands and being a very tactile person was really embedded in my DNA so to speak. I was always so drawn to beautiful stones. At first, I would make these little-beaded bracelets and walked into a store and showed it to the owner and she bought a small batch on the spot. People would always ask me about the jewelry I was wearing that I made and I just started selling it right off of me! I couldn’t believe I was making money doing something that was fun and that I really enjoyed, I think I just had an eye for it. I always had a curious fascination with gemstones. I once went to an Egyptian exhibit and was fascinated with the regality and beauty of the stones. Lapis and coral, rubies and tourmaline… it was so incredible to me that these stones are a reminder of the absolute beauty of this earth… that on the outside something can be rough and course and the inside there are these mystical crystallized formations. So many of my pieces are one of a kind. People feel the uniqueness and love that goes into each piece.
I grew up in the arts focusing on Acting and classical theater and I have my degree in theater from UCLA. It was hard to take myself seriously at first as a jewelry designer since I never had any formal training. So, I took some classes and just kept on doing it and everything I have ever made over the years has always sold. It seems to genuinely light people up when they wear it. That’s the best part.
My travels over the years to Southeast Asia, The Middle East, and Europe have completely inspired my designs. There’s really an antique timelessness but they’re also quite modern. I laugh sometimes when a teenage girl and an older woman both love and resonate with a similar piece.
Overall, has it been relatively smooth? If not, what were some of the struggles along the way?
For so many years, I was just making it. Just paying the bills. I think you really have to love what you’re doing and lead from your heart because it definitely isn’t easy but completely worth it. I believe consistency and passion for creating whatever it is you need to express and share with the world are valuable and necessary. I always had other passions besides jewelry design. Creativity comes through many channels and I’m proud that I have many passions. This has also been a challenge because to be successful at anything it takes focus and consistency. People telling you to just focus on one thing but that ultimately didn’t feel authentic or fulfilling to me. I have found my balance. I’m also a poet and singer. I’m currently working on my debut album with some incredible musicians. My goal is to inspire people to do what they love and actually make a living doing it; even though it can be scary and intimidating. If you keep at it, it really does pay off.
Alright – so let’s talk business. Tell us about Brooke Benson Designs – what should we know?
We specialize in handcrafted jewelry using precious and semi-precious stones, charms, gold and silver and one of a kind custom rings. I love searching for the most beautiful stones with fiery opalescence from opals to labradorite, to stunning turquoise and sparkling Druzy. Each stone tells a story and has so much character in each formation. I’m a bit obsessed with finding the perfect stones… it’s a labor of love indeed. We also love designing unique engagement rings and wedding bands. I have a Pop- Up store in a very fun artists market on Abbott Kinney in Venice on the Weekends from 11-5pm. 1219 Abbott Kinney Blvd. My favorite part of this is the personal interaction with all of the clients. A few of my favorite actresses have recently discovered my jewelry line by just walking by, which was so exciting! The pieces really speak to people and they usually have a hard time choosing. Also, there are so many tourists, so we get to meet people from all around the world. I’ve noticed people really love to meet and connect with the artist and have us personally adjust and customize the pieces on the spot.
- Website: Brookebensondesigns.com
- Phone: (310) 283-2032
- Email: Brooke@brookebensondesigns.com
- Instagram: @Brookebensondesigns
- Facebook: Brooke Benson Designs
Brooke Benson, Moonstone gold ring/green amethyst ring, Moonstone dangle earrings with gold Leaf, Kate Winslet wearing my jewelry on Abbott Kinney