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Ippolita Rostagno

Ippolita Rostagno, whose namesake jewelry line, Ippolita, is a cult favorite among discerning women (not to mention a slew of celebrities) across the globe, spent her life surrounded by art and culture. From her earliest memories of Henry Moore sculptures in the gardens of Florence, to founding a dance company in Los Angeles, Rostagno has been steeped in a world of aesthetic appreciation.

Having founded Ippolita a decade ago, Rostagno continues to design new collections that reflect the desires of the sophisticated women who covet them. On the occasion of her upcoming trunk show at Neiman Marcus this week, we caught up with Ippolita to discuss consuming jewelry, why she hides sketch books in the kitchen and her new Modern Femininity line.

Tell us a little about what inspired your latest collection.
Modern Femininity is the theme of my spring collection and to me this means feeling comfortable in your own skin—no matter what lifestyle you lead. Each of the collections I've designed have easy, wearable pieces in fun and flirty silhouettes that are designed to make you feel more beautiful, more comfortable, more sexy, more you.

Do you have a favorite stone or material you like to work with?
I really love to design in gold and enjoy working with colorful stones—London Blue Topaz, Turquoise and Brazilian Amethyst are some of my favorites.

What is your design process like? Are you constantly sketching new jewelry? Do you wake up in the middle of the night with ideas?
I draw continuously and stash sketchbooks everywhere—even in the kitchen. I never know when or where I may be inspired.

Is there a time of the day that you're the most productive?
I am a night person and find that I am most creative late in evening.

Do you go on trips for inspiration? If so, what have been some of the most inspiring destinations you've visited?
I travel constantly and my journeys are an endless source of inspiration—the people, the architecture, even the food. I recently traveled to Berlin and was captivated by the city and its rich and vibrant history; the shopping was amazing as well.

You launched a home collection in 2005, which seemed like a natural progression from the jewelry line. Do you have any other plans for expanding the line in the works?
We have some very exciting projects in the works. Unfortunately I can't share them with you just yet, but stay tuned…

Last year you celebrated the 10th anniversary of Ippolita. What have been the greatest changes you've seen within your brand over the last decade?
For me, the biggest change has actually been in the way women "consume" jewelry, particularly for a fashion-driven line like mine. Women shop for it the way they do for handbags and shoes and it's been exciting to offer our clients those "It" pieces that update their jewelry wardrobe, much the same way they update their fashion.

Don’t miss the Ippolita trunk show at Neiman Marcus, May 4, from 10 a.m. to 4 p.m.

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