To celebrate its 20th anniversary, Elyse Walker, the Southern California luxury fashion retailer, has teamed up with Los Angeles-based jewelry label Spinelli Kilcollin on a new capsule collection. The collection will be available exclusively at Elyse Walker stores starting Oct. 1.
“It’s a collaboration from the heart,” Elyse Walker said during a recent interview about the collection, which is made up of seven new designs in the form of earrings, necklaces and rings made of white diamonds and 18-karat yellow, white or rose gold. Retailing for $2,400 to $11,500, the new pieces feature a twist on Spinelli Kilcollin’s signature linked Galaxy ring, which has been worn by Oprah Winfrey, Emily Blunt and Heidi Klum. “We wanted something original but we also wanted it to be true to the Spinelli styling.”
Jewelry designer Yves Spinelli, who cofounded Spinelli Kilcollin with his artist wife, Dwyer Kilcollin, said he was honored to commemorate Walker’s 20-year achievement. “I have so much respect for her as a businessperson and as a retailer,” said Spinelli, who managed a competing retail store before launching his jewelry company about 10 years ago.
“Elyse believed in us,” he said, sharing that Walker began carrying his brand in 2015 even though she wasn’t selling fine jewelry at the time. “She came to us. She said, ‘I love this concept. This is totally my aesthetic.’ She jumped behind it, and it was successful from the start, which has a lot to do with her because her clients trust her. … It did a lot for our brand.”
Walker said she appreciates “when a designer has a point of view,” noting that Spinelli Kilcollin’s distinct aesthetic “wasn’t what everyone else was doing.”
As part of the occasion, Spinelli Kilcollin will set up a live customization workshop at Walker’s flagship Pacific Palisades store from Oct. 1-28.
“It’s our first time we’ve ever done something like this,” said Spinelli, explaining that customers will have 15 handmade styles to choose from. “Our lead time on custom orders is less than a week. So we streamlined it in a way that it could be done within one hour of someone ordering it.”
In addition to her 7,000-square-foot flagship Palisades location, Walker has a store in Newport Beach as well as the concept store Towne by Elyse Walker at Palisades Village and at the Glen Centre in Los Angeles. Towne by Elyse Walker is opening a Calabasas location in fall 2020. (She also is the fashion director — and the face — of the e-commerce site Forward by Elyse Walker, as part of Revolve Group Inc.)
Walker might be considered a Los Angeles retail fixture today but in 1997, the former New Yorker was a newcomer just like any other East Coast transplant. She moved to town after her husband accepted an investment banking job in the area.
“I knew no one in L.A.,” she said, acknowledging that she decided to open her namesake store in 1999 in search of a sense of community. “I wanted to build a place where everyone came to hang out.”
Although Pacific Palisades is experiencing a retail resurgence, Walker’s boutique was one of the few retail spaces in that community at the time. “I opened a very small, 800-square-foot store, one block from my kids’ school, so I could pick my kids up and be room mom,” she said. Walker has since befriended a “Who’s Who” of Hollywood including Jennifer Garner, who has served as cohost of Walker’s Pink Party, a woman’s cancer benefit for Cedars-Sinai, which has raised $11.7 million during the last 10 years.
Looking ahead, Walker said she wants Towne by Elyse Walker to be the “coffee shop of fashion” by offering basics from brands such as Saint Laurent, Bottega Veneta, Amo Denim and Frame. She also hopes to open 18 to 25 more concept stores across the country. “I still feel like I’m just warming up,” she said.