About a year ago The House Of Coco team caught up with jewelry designer Jennifer Potter for an exclusive look at one of her amazing collections. We immediately fell in love with her pieces and the story behind her work. 2016 was a good year for Jennifer hosting pop-up shops in New York City and in Florida. We were able to catch up with the busy Jetsetter once again to see what she has in store for everyone for 2017.
HOC: So Jenn it’s been about a year since we last spoke to you. What have you been working on since we caught up with you in 2016 ?
JP: The last year seems like a complete blur. I have been so incredibly busy since last sitting down with you. It was definitely the year of growth .It was our first official year in business & I’ve created a lot of pieces this past year that I am so proud of. I can’t even begin to tell you the number of emails I sent out seeking a major retail deal. After months of persistent calls and emails, we got the break we were waiting for. We were given the opportunity to meet with one of the nations number one luxury retailers. We traveled for weeks working very hard to have them curate a collection that would work best for their store, only to be let go two weeks before our launch. It was beyond devastating not only for the brand, but for me as a person. I fought and worked so hard to make that deal happen. I think I was most disappointed in losing the creative direction of the brand. Someone was telling me what to design and what would sell. You tend to lose yourself during times like these and that’s a problem when you are your brand. When that happened, I dug deep and put everything I had into launching the KEEP GOING CAMPAIGN. The campaign, although based off a necklace I designed that says Keep Going, is more about purpose than it is about jewelry. This campaign allowed me to interview women and share their stories of strength, courage, and perseverance. As with anything I shoot, each girl was nude only wearing the necklace and their story. This campaign has changed my life and the lives of women all over the US. WSVN 7 Miami did a story on the campaign and you would not believe the phone calls and emails I received from complete strangers. It was powerful. The campaign went on to reach Nation wide exposure being published in proud2beme.org as well as the Business Insider.
2016 was a special year for us. We learned a lot about business and the industry. We were fortunate enough to host multiple pop-up shops in New York City and South Florida.
HOC: With every collection, we love how you tell a story. What’s the focus of the new collection and what’s the story you’re trying to tell with it ?
JP: The new collection I am currently working on goes back to my roots as a hip-hop stylist. As many of you know, I spent 6 years working as a stylist for some of the biggest names in hip-hop and R&B. Working with rappers taught me to express myself fully and live life opulently. This new collection is more me. I feel like I lost myself over the last 8 months and was creating something that didn’t speak to me. Don’t get me wrong, I was making beautiful jewelry, but it didn’t have substance or that wow factor, at least not to me. The brand is The Jennifer Potter Collection so its only fitting that it reflects Jennifer Potter. I feel like when you meet me or think about me, minimal is the last thing that comes to mind. I’m excessive and don’t deny it. I am working on a line filled with diamonds, sapphires, and colored stones that will reflect this side of me. The new collection is very edgy, unapologetic, and dope. This new line will be unlike anything last season. This time around we’re making excessive look normal.
HOC: What’s the thought process behind your designs ?
JP: When I sit down to create a piece, I think about the Jet Setting Gypsy of the 21st century. You know, the baddie dripping in Balenciaga with that unapologetic attitude. She is fearless. She is powerful. She is strong. I want to design pieces that represent that female. The girl who knows exactly what she wants and isn’t afraid to get it. You know the girl who will ask for your opinion only to do it her own way. Each piece has to represent her. Whoever she is, that’s whom I’m designing for.
HOC: If you could choose two celebrities to make custom pieces for who would they be and why ?
I am so beyond obsessed with Rihanna and Rita Ora. These women are the type of women I design jewelry for. They could care less about your opinion and do things their way. There are no rules to abide by, they create their own. I live for women like that. I think in this day and age it is so important to be your own badass self in a world that is seen through a filter. Pile on the diamonds hunty, wear those mean boots, and be who you were destined to be without reservation. I always talk about designing jewelry for the unapologetic female, but that’s really and truly who I make pieces for. I want my clients to rock their pieces in complete confidence and I want them to know they’re enough. You’re powerful. You’re strong and you have to Keep Going!
HOC: As a busy business woman on the go what are some of your go to pieces you love to wear ?
Jet Setting is my most favorite thing to do. I love being in the clouds and meeting new people on my travels. Whenever I’m headed to a destination, chances are I’m only there for a few days, which means I have to be a light packer. I’ve learned that traveling with jewelry cases and displays can be exhausting, so I desperately try to master not overpacking. I always wear the same pieces everyday. I live for a stack of diamonds, I mean honestly what girl doesn’t? You’ll always see me rocking a huge pave diamond ring and a stack of at least three rings. I love mixing my designs with pieces my grandmother once wore and designer pieces. You know I’m all about luxury and opulence! I always wear an open face skeleton diamond watch because it’s a show stopper. I love having unique pieces & don’t get me wrong, mama has the Cartier and Rolex in the safe, but I crave something unique, something that’s going to make you stop in your tracks. I wear the same bracelets everyday and usually pile on a few layered pave diamond necklaces. Each piece tells a story and is so personal to me. Sometimes when I’m traveling, I’ll make a few silk and diamond pieces to give to people I meet on my journey. Since I’m always on the move, jewelry has to be comfortable, stylish, and dope.
HOC: What can we expect to see from you in 2017 and where can your jewelry be purchased ?
2017 is going to be a powerful year for the brand. I am working extremely hard to create a collection that is both luxurious and opulent. I really want people to see the new collection and say wow, that is totally Jennifer Potter. I am working on a powerful piece of literature which I am incredibly excited about. I am hoping to have it published and available later this year. If you or someone you know would like to be apart of the Keep Going Campaign, please click the link (http://www.jenniferpotterjewelry.com/the-brand/our-mission). Currently our jewelry is only available via www.JenniferPotterJewelry.com until we launch the new line. People can stay connected to what we’re working on via Instagram @jenniferpotterjewelry.
Jennifer isn’t like other jewelry designers. She wasn’t born into the trade of making these amazing pieces, she learned on her own from melting her grandmothers gold in order to start her first collection. Now that’s what you call starting from scratch.