Lauren Santo Domingo on the Cutting-Edge Jewels Dropping in the Hamptons

Lauren Santo Domingo on the Cutting-Edge Jewels Dropping in the Hamptons

We’ve curated a wide range of jewels across all styles, makers and time periods. From 1920s Art Deco to contemporary pieces, the collection encompasses all price points as well, with an emphasis on design; sometimes iconic, and always rare and beautiful. The collection has changed throughout the summer, every 2-3 weeks. We are thrilled to partner with Moda Operandi to offer a different point of view on the mix of old and new including designs by Stephen Russell, Bulgari, Van Cleef & Arpels, among many others.

Frank Everett: You often collaborate with other designers and brands - how do you choose who to work with and do you have a dream collaborator?

Lauren Santo Domingo: The Moda client is very unique. I am tuned in with her hopes, dreams, wants and wishes. I approach every partnership with her in mind. I fall in love with things fast and fierce and I have an impulse to share all my new discoveries. I am not the type to keep things a secret, whether it is a new designer or a doctor who can shave 2 years off your face, I absolutely must share everything (it is Naya Rea and Dr. Lara Devgan respectively).

Lauren Santo Domingo Moda Operandi
Moda Operandi Founder Lauren Santo Domingo.

I am lucky, I create products that I want for myself. I am working on a dream collaboration as we speak! But as always with these types of things, it is top secret. Check back in September.

The fashion crowd loves to mix high/low. Do you ever wear fine jewels with costume pieces?

Of course. I usually only wear one or two pieces of jewelry at a time- and it really doesn’t matter to me whether it is fashion or fine.

Simon Teakle, Sphene Ring, by Seaman Schepps circa 1950. Courtesy Moda Operandi.

Why don’t more women own 19th century pieces? They’re so beautiful and such a great value!

I collect 19th century pieces, however, I’m the first to admit they are fragile and don’t travel well.

You’ve included Fernando Jorge, one of my favourite contemporary designers. What do you love about his pieces?

When Moda launched our Fine Jewelry business we did so with Fernando Jorge as one of our emerging talents. It’s been wonderful to watch his star (and his talent) rise.

Fernando Jorge earrings courtesy Moda Operandi.

Do you believe that jewelry is seasonal? Are the pieces in this trunk show best for the summer and fall months or all year round?

While I wear gold jewelry all year round, I’m the first to admit it looks better with a tan! Lately, I have really been loving Jacquie Aiche, Jenna Blake and Carolina Bucci for the beach.

"I fall in love with things fast and fierce and I have an impulse to share all my new discoveries"

People often talk about the lure of the Hamptons and the pace of life away from the city. What is it about this place that keeps you coming back, time and again?

I think the expansive beaches of the Hamptons are some of the most beautiful in the world. That most residents prefer central air is even better, the beaches are almost completely empty.

Lauren Santo Domingo's Southampton hung with Alexander Calder gouaches. Photographed by Ricardo Labougle, Vogue, September 2019.

What are your must-see places and haunts on Long Island that no visit would be complete without?

Shopping local is a must of the Hamptons. I go to Sagaponack Flowers for late summer dahlias, Sang Lee Farmstead for fish and produce or I head to Cor-J fresh fish market in Hampton bays. Cor-J is insanely fresh, you can see the fishermen, still in their waders, bringing in bushels of blue crab. I always find something to love at the Southampton farmers market every Sunday. Last week I just discovered a local Kombucha from The Fern that has made me reconsider fermented goods, go with the Peach Mint.

There is a long legacy of cultural icons escaping to the Hamptons to recharge or to work on a project (Warhol, Mick Jagger, Truman Capote, Jackson Pollock to name a few). Does it still retain that inspirational charm?

Peter Beard passed away this April, tragically in the woods of Montauk. Sadly I feel he took that last of that spirit of the Hamptons with him, marking the end of its glory days with a sudden and heartbreaking finality. Of course, the Hamptons still has a ton of charm. It is a very different place than the one that exists in our collective imagination, more Bethenny Frankel than Helen Frankenthaler.


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