(Journey With Jewels)

JJ Martin's Jewelry Collection Includes This 1920's Chanel Necklace

And other magnificent finds.

By Kathy Lee

Journey With Jewels is our series that explores one’s relationship with jewelry beyond adornments — as a force to transform, empower, and even draw on energy from the past. From perennial favorites to vintage heirlooms, the meaning we attach to these decorative objects range and reveal more than our styling preferences. This edition is with the marvelous designer of La DoubleJ and vintage jewelry collector JJ Martin.

JJ Martin isn’t your typical jewelry enthusiast. For the designer and founder of fashion label La DoubleJ, affinity for jewelry goes beyond gemstones, craftsmanship, or other worldly distinctions one may consider when contemplating an investment piece. It is in fact the unseeable quality that attracts Martin to each bauble — the energy each stone, crystal, and metal transmits. “I started realizing the frequency that stones and crystals can have, and it’s one of the reasons why I think women have been traditionally drawn toward jewelry; it’s just the fact that these stones emit a power,” Martin shares with TZR over video.

So it’s no wonder that over the decades, the jewelry aficionado amassed a notable curation of vintage and antique pieces from the likes of Chanel, Pierre Cardin, Schiaparelli, and Ugo Correani for Versace. Martin began collecting in the late ’90s when she was living in New York City and working at Calvin Klein. “I would always go to the Chelsea Flea Market on the weekends, and it was just a treasure trove of the most amazing pieces. And so I really started small. I was just attracted to the magnificent costume pieces that I would find, and I would just nab them up.”

Martin admits that, for her, there needs to be an emotional connection with what she puts so close to her skin. “My favorite thing is this ring that I have that’s pink quartz. I got it at the crystal shop, so there’s really no design to it, but this is bringing the energy. Pink quartz is very healing, soft, a feminine energy, and I love it.” Martin continues to elaborate on the properties of gold, turquoise, and amethyst, some of her other favorites, and how they enhance the vibrations of the wearer. Martin is referring to high and low vibrations, the belief that emotions such as joy, peace, and acceptance create high frequency vibrations and that anger, jealousy, and fear vibrate at a lower rate.

Martin’s spiritual practice is what helps the busy entrepreneur manage the chaos and uncertainties that come with running a business. A day before we spoke, it was announced on WWD that La DoubleJ would be opening its first store within the next few weeks in the premier Golden Triangle shopping district in Milan, next to Chanel and across from Bottega Veneta. It certainly could not have been an easy feat to plan out a store during the pandemic, but, by the look of Martin, she seemed at ease, almost zen-like, beaming as if she just got out of a long yoga session. “I find it very relaxing to be around vintage products; I feel like they’re my people.”

True to that testament, the creative force organized her enviable collection of necklaces like an art installation in her home. Tune in to the video, below, to see the gorgeous display in her apartment in Milan and listen to Martin’s philosophy on selecting jewelry that’s right for you.