From Bad Bunny’s baubles to hand-sanitizer bottles, this jewelry designer is in demand
Georgina Treviño got the call in early March. It was less than three days before Bad Bunny would don full drag for his “Yo Perreo Sola” music video — a move that would set the internet ablaze — and less than a week before COVID-19 was declared a pandemic.
Treviño, 31, was up for the challenge when the Puerto Rican sensation needed custom jewelry freaky and irreverent enough to make his vision a reality. Tight deadlines and impending doom be damned.
“I was like, I’m making something,” she said, “even if I don’t sleep.”
Released on March 27, the video, co-directed by Stillz and Bad Bunny, did the seemingly impossible: broke through the relentless stream of coronavirus news dominating social media. The video had the artist’s signature brand of flair — and Treviño’s unique designs — front and center.
The women’s empowerment anthem off Bad Bunny’s latest album, “YHLQMDLG,” celebrates consent and the joys of twerking alone.
In the production, Bad Bunny 2.0 dressed the part. He was solo-grinding in a cherry-red latex outfit with teensy-tiny sunglasses and a mullet wig while wearing Georgina Treviño originals. Featured in the video was a sparkling O-Ring choker around Bad Bunny’s neck that was stacked with rings, pearls and chains, paired with a set of earrings dangling down to his collarbone. The accessories had an exaggerated kind of elegance.
It’s the designer’s signature style: Taking pieces that people may pass off as tacky or kitschy — the kinds of trinkets you might find in Santee Alley or an indoor swap-meet — and creating something entirely new with them. Call it jewelry with a sense of humor.
Born in San Diego and raised in Tijuana, the Mexican American designer recognized the influence that Bad Bunny in drag would have. “Being a Latino,” Treviño said, “it’s very powerful for him to do that.” She added that she’s glad that her work gets to be part of that conversation in a small way.
She started the Georgina Treviño brand in 2010 while in Mexico City, where she was taking a year off from studying applied design (with a focus on jewelry and metal-smithing) at San Diego State University.
It’s where she came into her own as a designer and the place still informs much of her work today.
Her pieces are inspired by the kind of colorful, mass-produced and knock-off jewelry abundant in Mexico City markets like La Lagunilla. Treviño takes these pieces, elevates and adds her twist to them, incorporating a precious metal here or a detailed etching there. It’s a mix of high and low that embraces its own irony.
Think gold bamboo earrings pierced with a neon tongue ring and 5-inch-long cubic zirconia strips. Or a sterling silver sheet made to look like an earring tag that’s pierced with fake diamonds and engraved with the words, Mi Primer Diamante, or “my first diamond.”
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Her work has been worn by Lady Gaga, Lizzo, Kesha, Ms Nina, Doja Cat, Girl Ultra and others — artists who, like Treviño’s jewelry, are unapologetically themselves.
“When people wear my stuff, I want them to feel confident,” she said. “Like, that ...”
It’s not the first time she’s designed for Bad Bunny on a tight deadline either. In February, Treviño’s stylist friend Nayeli De Alba tapped her to create a custom embellished cowboy hat and bucket hat, among other pieces, for Bad Bunny’s album promotion shoot with Spotify. Again, she had less than three days to deliver.
“I like that challenge of creating as an artist,” she says, “especially in such a short time. … That’s my jam for sure.”
The two drag looks in “Yo Perreo Sola” were styled by L.A.-based sister duo Chloe and Chenelle Delgadillo. When coming up with concepts for Bad Bunny — after all, an artist won’t just wear anything — they turn to designers like Treviño whose style is wildly different from most of anything out there.
“Usually you have to talk an artist into [what] will make a look,” Chenelle said, “but I picked up [the jewelry], and he just shook his head [yes]. He knew.
“You can always tell it’s a piece by her,” she said of Treviño. “She has her signature crystal dangles or quirky placements that make it very unique and very distinguishable.”
For the Bad Bunny video, Treviño also created a pair of gold flame cutout earrings, stamped with the words “Yo Perreo Sola.” Bad Bunny fell in love with them and took them home after the shoot, Chenelle said.
Seeing the work she made for Bad Bunny, before the coronavirus madness hit the U.S., on such a large platform — the video has surpassed 135 million views on YouTube — Treviño is reminded to continue creating in times of uncertainty.
“We have to stay positive and figure projects out even if it’s from home,” she said. “Despite the situation, we need these fun things in our lives.”
In a pinch, a T-shirt can be used to create a no-sew mask to help slow the spread of the coronavirus.
One of the ways she’s doing that now, in addition to customizing a limited number of washable face masks, is her COVID-19 Collab Series.
Working mostly out of a makeshift space in her garage, she’s teaming up with other artists on one-off pieces to sell on her site. (Treviño has had to cut down on time spent at her regular San Diego studio to respect social-distancing guidelines.)
It’s Treviño’s way of supporting other creatives through these times and keeping herself motivated in the process. She plans to work with one to two people a week from across different disciplines and document the series in a catalog.
She already collaborated with a local eco-friendly product brand to customize one of the hottest, most in-demand products of 2020: A mini-hand sanitizer bottle.
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