Designer Spotlight : Jill McCrystal

Jill Mccrystal believes that we all have multiple personalities within us, each begging to be expressed in a different and unique way. Our moods change, the focus of our intentions change, and our expressions change from subtle to overt. This is what make us interesting and evocative. Jewelry can enhance these expressions of our self. Jewelry can bring out the passion we feel, the playfulness in our hearts, the elegance of our movements. It can add to the creation of a mood.

All of her jewelry is created to honor the stones that came from the Earth. There is nothing that makes her happier than to help you create an expression of your self by providing you with just the piece that fits you and the mood that you hope to create.

Here, she tells us more…

When did you launch the brand and what was the reason behind it?
I launched my business in 2006.  The greatest love of my life has always been the outdoors.  I spent my childhood backpacking with my dad, high school roaming the deserts and mountains with a biology class, scuba diving in college and rock climbing and mountain biking later.  A friend once asked me how I thought she might meet someone who likes to do the same activities as she does, so I suggested wearing a necklace that depicted trail running, but we could only find jewelry with traditional sports like softball.  So I took a class in soldering and made myself a trail runner pendant to test it out. I was surprised to find that I frequently got asked about where I like to run whenever I wore my necklace.  So my first jewelry line was for women who love adventure sports, so they can wear their passion on their sleeves.  My next puzzle was what to wear on a night out.  And so my upscale gemstone jewelry line was born.

What’s your background?
My background is actually in Science.  I have a degree in biology – chemistry and I teach chemistry, astronomy and marine biology to high school students.  My jewelry is my creative outlet and I’ve taken courses from places such as the Revere Academy in San Francisco and the Silvera jewelry school in Berkeley to improve my skills.

How many people are involved in the company and what are their roles?
Just me.  I do everything.

If you could start over with the business, would you do anything differently?
I would have started my business earlier!  But until it just “happened”, I was just an ordinary nature girl with no thoughts of adornment.

What is the hardest challenge you have faced since you started the company?
Mostly trying to create a brand and business when I’m working full time as a teacher.  I wear myself out sometimes with the extra time on my business.  And I’ve never been good at tooting my own horn, an asset I have yet to develop.

2017 is here, where do you plan on taking the brand?
As long as I am teaching, I will keep my brand small.  I plan on adding a few pendants to my Imwomango line, such as a sailor, scuba diver and woman in science.  As for my luxury brand, I will keep that small and focused on simple designs with utterly outrageous gems.

To date, what has been the highlight since launching?
Meeting some fine female entrepreneurs along the way and being seen in magazines such as Brides and Glamour (and yours, of course!).

Which city do you feel most at home in, London, Paris or New York?
New York.  I love the access to shows and art.  And when I need to escape I can wander through Central Park.

Three beauty products you can’t leave the house without?
What are beauty products?  I leave the house with my wallet and keys after putting on sunscreen and grabbing the right gear for trail running or mountain biking!

Style means….?
Being YOU…totally, unabashedly YOU.  And then expressing it either subtly or outrageously in your persona and clothing.

Best thing about London to you?
I have only been to London once on a bicycle tour of Europe with a friend, and I loved meeting the people.  But I’m guessing that if I went there now, I would focus on finding great restaurants!

Statement shoe or statement bag?
How about a statement bike?  Okay, okay….a bag.

If you had to, what piece of clothing from your wardrobe would you wear everyday?
Flannel shirt.

Favourite love song?
Love and affection by Joan Armatrading

Best place for a coffee?
Peet’s coffee brewed by my husband and imbibed on our deck in the redwoods while I watch the birds vying for position on the feeders and fountain.

Most memorable piece of advice given to you?
“Look for a man that you can’t keep your hands off of, but you can lay with all night in bed just talking.”.  This piece of advice helped me decide on the right man to marry and I’ve been deliriously happy ever since.

Guilty pleasure?
I can think of many, but it always comes down to chocolate.

If you could spent 24 hours in anywhere in the world, where would it be?
On the International space station watching the entire world go by every 92 minutes.

Find out more…

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