One of the coolest parts of running this blog is the chance to meet so many talented and good-hearted people in this city that I live in. It always starts with a mutual appreciation of each other's work, and it all just sort of grows from there. It's amazing how much support spreads in all directions in this industry. The connections I've made so far have been so worthwhile and fruitful, and there has been so much storytelling involved, that I learn something new every time. One of these beautiful souls that I have had the pleasure to meet in person after months of emails back and forth is Luiny, designer of jewelry line FiLiLí. Luiny creates all her stunning designs out of her cozy, light filled Bushwick home. I was introduced to her brand by another vintage shop based in Bushwick, and I have been hooked ever since, sporting at least one of her designs every single day. Thank you Luiny for letting me into your home and sharing these gorgeous pictures so that my readers can get to know her and FiLiLí a little better.
Define what FiLiLí means and how does it fit into your brand's aesthetic?
FiLiLí is a spanish adjetive that means something good, pretty and well done, I think it fits perfect, right?!
What gave you the push to create FiLiLí?
The need to make something creative and different to what is already out there.
How has NYC played a role in the growth of your jewelry brand? And how does it keep on inspiring you?
NYC has taught me a lot and has transformed the line completely. In Puerto Rico, I started as an artisan, making one of a kind designs that were very unique, artsy and colorful. In NYC I learned new techniques and other ways of designing. The line now is streamlined and has opened up to a wider market.
What are some of your favorite NYC spots, and especially in Bushwick?
There’s no place like home! So these days of hard work, I have to say that my garden is the place to be! In Bushwick, Northeast Kingdom, in my opinion, makes the best burger in NYC!
FiLiLí feels very worldly to me, and exotic. What are some of the places that you have been able to visit that have stood out to you the most, and how have they made an impact on your designs?
I am from the Caribbean! What more exotic than that! But I have to say that NYC has made a big impact on me and the way I work.
What are three words you would use to describe yourself? What are three words you would use to describe the girl that wears FiLiLí?
For me: Hard working, Fun/Not fun, Creative
FiLiLí customers: Eclectic, Self confident, Unique
Favorite designers? Favorite local designers?
I use mostly vintage. Lately, I’m into shoes, like Y.R.U, Acne, YES . . . As for jewelry, I like the work that Aoko Su and Unearthen are doing.
Who is your style icon?
How important is sustainable fashion and supporting the awareness where products of the industry are made and how? How do you feel what you do adds to this more conscious fashion outlook?
It is important to have that consciousness, a past collection of mine was created using recycled materials for the most part.
What's something about yourself that not many people know.
Better keep it that way! ; )
What is it that you love most about fashion and where do you take most of your inspiration from?
Through fashion, one can manifest a lot about oneself and one’s culture and it’s alive like us, changing and evolving continuously. These days most of my inspiration has been coming from the African tribal culture.
Where do you see FiLiLí in say 1 year? In 5 years?
I see FiLiLí available in more stores in and out of the United States.
What's your favorite quote and why is it so impressionable on you?
Not a quote, but the phrase ‘Same, same but different.’ has stuck out for a while, because that’s how I feel about myself: constantly changing while being the same.