As part of the amazing PR team for Neiman Marcus, Alyssa Kilpatrick may not have set out one day to launch a smart and richly-storied jewelry collection, but a chance encounter in a vintage store with some beautiful, but lonely, scarab pendants set her on that creative path.
Alyssa remembered the significance of the scarab – The beetle’s daily work representing making life out of nothing – and rebirth. The Egyptian myth tells says the beetle represents the God Khephra, the lord of the midnight sun. It is his job to take the sun across the sky so that it can rise again in the morning. His story is the most interesting because he is a self-made god.
So the scarabs came home along with a plan to buy some gold bales and hang her new treasures from fishhooks as earrings. Until her mind’s eye imagined one on a long gold chain as a necklace… Or perhaps on a leather band as a bracelet…
And there Isis Designs was born. The scarab took on a more modern aesthetic, but the story and meaning were still the same. Alyssa now has a 10-piece collection crafted out of 14K gold and diamonds as well as a calfskin leather headband, dyed naturally and cut by hand. The craftsmen she works with live the artisan lifestyle and practices – further enriching the story of the scarab.
I love the delicate power of these pieces. Easily wearable in the day-to-day dealings and administrivia of life we all have to deal with, but just enough presence to transition to dinner and cocktails. I love a piece that not only has a story, but is interesting enough to create a conversation as well.
Note: Isis is not sold at Neiman Marcus. It is only available online.