Larissa Loden designs for women who aren’t afraid to express themselves. They are strong and fearless, interested in history and love to dress up. She is inspired by stories behind the pieces and those wearing them, and feeds off seeing her jewelry complete a look.
Larissa established her own company in 2005 and has been forging jewelry ever since. She continues to push harder to create modern pieces that tell a story. She hopes to establish Larissa Loden Jewelry as a national brand and one day open a flagship store.
To meet Larissa and learn more about her work in person, be sure to stop by the upcoming Rummage event at the Minnesota State Fairgrounds at the new West End Market! Read our full Rummage event preview story for more details!
Talk about the beginnings of Larissa Loden jewelry. What inspired you to begin this endeavor?
I started Larissa Loden Jewelry straight out of high school. I got a job at a beadstore in MOA, and at this store you could sell your designs on consignment. While I was very much in the beginning stages of figuring out what kind of a designer I was, my inner businesswoman was born. Ever since then I have been working on growing my business and myself as a designer.
Have you always been creative? How does your work allow you to tap into your creativity?
I have been creating/making things since I can remember. I think for a lot of people creating and being creative is all about the process whether it is cooking or sewing or soldering. For me the process is the creative part. My work allows me to express myself in a way that not only do I get to express myself but the person who is wearing it gets to express themselves as well and there is something amazing about that.
Your site mentions that you grew up in New York - what brought you to Minnesota?
I moved to Minnesota because of my then boyfriend and now husband. I was at a good point in my life and ready for a new adventure. Sure glad I did! I love Minnesota and think it is a pretty underrated state.
In terms of living and making in Minnesota, do you feel connected to this place? Have you found a beneficial creative community here?
I feel very connected to Minnesota I have been here for almost half my life and all of those years where you are make choices as an adult and defining who you are. I have found the MN community ripe with creativity and a great place to start and grow a business. Since the cost of living here is good you can really invest in your business and help your business grow.
Who do you design jewelry for? Is the buyer the inspiration of your design process? Or do you make things because you love them?
As a designer I really try to design jewelry with a look in mind and a person. Designing is a little bit like a homework assignment you need to have some criteria you need to meet. I also tend to be inspired a lot by the components I use. If I find a gemstone or vintage chain that I love, I use that as a jumping off point for the design and then think how can I use this component in a new and interesting way that no one has seen before, but is still effortless and easy to wear. I design my jewelry to be worn every day and not only for special occasions.
Do you feel like making and creating through your business allows you to contribute to something larger than yourself?
I do, I feel like by creating and designing I can help people express themselves. Humans have been adorning themselves with clothes and jewelry for thousands of years and I don't see that stopping anytime soon. We also donate a % of our profits to local organizations and have a internship program. The internship program really helps give an inside look into what it takes to run a small business that sells on a nation wide scale.