On choosing diamonds.
I am most inspired by the character of a stone,
whether it emits a shatter of sparks
or something darker and stormier
or a even a bright, seemingly backlit mist…
I am drawn to the way a diamond can both
reflect light out and draw it in
and the strange and beautiful inclusions that pull me into it’s depths and mysteries.
as if it contains everything there is to know about the universe
in one small sparkly bit.
if the stone is to reveal it’s secrets
I view my job as a goldsmith
as one of stepping back
and allowing that voice to be heard
of whether it is a poetic whisper
or an operatic aria.
When she’s not dreaming up her namesake line in her studio, Lola Brooks—a self-described artist, metalsmith, jeweler, clotheshorse, and occasional writer—can often be found channeling her passion for making jewelry into poetry.
“There have been times when I write copiously for years, filling pages and pages with prose about the wonders and agony of being alive, and the things I surround myself with, and then there times where that energy get focused in other directions: my jewelry, my art, my relationships,” explains Brooks. “I have been obsessed with sparkly bits and miniature worlds since I was a small child, and became adept at losing myself in the depths of my imagination as a way to understand and manage the world around me.”
That fascination includes her long-standing love affair with diamonds, which often make their way into her signature wedding pieces.
“Wedding and engagement rings are some of my favorite things to make, because they represent so many of the things that I think makes jewelry so powerful in the first place,” says the jeweler, whose ornate works draw upon both historical and cultural references in equal measure. “They are symbolic, sentimental, talismanic, and they can reflect the character of the relationship and the people who chose them for each other.”
These pieces are oft recognizable by the signature settings which define Brooks’ vision, which include a simple bezel, one-of-a-kind cast settings that are loosely inspired by classical jewelry, and chunky prong-set rings—Brooks’ riff on a traditional engagement ring.
“I am fascinated by the intrinsic properties of diamonds such as hardness and ability to reflect light, the miraculous way that they come into being, the elemental forces that have to converge in exactly the right way for millions of years in order to make this very particular version of carbon what it is,” says Brooks, who takes into consideration shape, faceting, color, and the way light moves through the stone when selecting diamonds for her designs. “And then the fact that someone figured out how to cleave that luminous pebble, polishing it into angular planes, in order to capture that magical dance of light bouncing off of facets, beguiling us all.”