David Webb Returns to the Beverly Wilshire

David Webb at the Beverly Wilshire

After three years on Brighton Way, David Webb is moving back to its roots in the iconic Beverly Wilshire Hotel. The boutique will be about 1,000 square feet and will be adjacent to the lobby entrance of the hotel with a storefront actually on Wilshire. The space will feature elements similar to those of the New York boutique, though adapted for the California climate. The original boutique in the Beverly Wilshire opened in February 1994 and served as the ideal setting for Webb’s celebrity fans to see all the newest pieces during their respite in Los Angeles before moving deeper into Beverly Hills. Now, the jewelry brand—first made famous in 1948 after it’s namesake began dressing top-tier socialites and Hollywood leading ladies such as Jackie Kennedy, Gloria Vanderbilt, Diana Vreeland, Nan Kemper and Estee Lauder—will re-open its doors at the tony Four Seasons-owned hotel this August. The brand, which was acquired by Mark Emanuel and Robert Sadian five years ago (Webb passed away in 1975), has seen a revival in Hollywood, and has been worn by modern mega-stars like Rihanna, Jennifer Lawrence, Jennifer Garner, Gwyneth Paltrow and Mary-Kate and Ashley Olsen. In fact, its workshop craftsmen and women are constantly bringing back pieces that were once worn in old Hollywood films, lending the ensembles of modern-day starlets a vintage, old Hollywood touch. For those unfamiliar, Webb—a man described as the “quintessential American jeweler”—is famous for his 18K gold pieces in animal motifs: cuff links, brooches, rings, bracelets and earrings in the shapes of tigers, frogs, lion heads, alligators, cheetahs and rams. He is a man that Jackie Kennedy once compared to Cellini and a man of whom the Duchess of Windsor described as today’s answer to Fabergé. His design voice was an amalgam of influences, from the South of his boyhood to his explorations of faraway lands and ancient cultures. He embraced art deco and heraldic forms, and the beauty of enamel jewelry. His most elegant jewelry makes big pearls sexy and turns a spotlight on rock crystal accented with white diamonds. Important diamond jewelry is an unexpected though stunning entry in his work. Webb excelled at jewelry with an idiomatically American sensibility, having an “anything goes” optimism.