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Roxanne Assoulin started making jewelry in the 1970’s when she was a student at New York University. Turning trimmings and everyday objects like ribbons, rhinestones, and twigs into everything from barrettes to bracelets, she captured the playful, punky attitude of fashion at that time, making hand-made, personality-packed accessories her trademark. Today––having grown her business from a do-it-yourself endeavor into a global brand––her line, Lee Angel, is the country’s quintessential source for joyous, energetic, and innovative costume jewelry.
From the very beginning, Assoulin’s career has been an eclectic one, glittered with collaborations and clever ideas. In the ’70’s, Assoulin designed exclusives for Norma Kamali and Jackie Rogers, and for the Fiorucci store in Soho. "They asked me to make things that were more Italian, so I glued dried bowtie pasta onto barrettes," Assoulin says of Fiorucci. In the ’80’s, amidst the success of her debut line, Roxanne Assoulin, she worked with many of the industry’s best: Stephen Sprouse, Marc Jacobs, Fabien Baron, Polly Mellon, and Oscar de la Renta, among them. More recently, Assoulin teamed with designer Brian Reyes on a collection of constellation-like pieces to compliment his Fall ’09 collection. From the runways to the clubs and straight on to celebrities like Madonna and Kate Hudson, Assoulin’s optimistic and superbly original pieces give every woman who wears them a distinct and desirable edge.
Today, Assoulin designs fifteen collections annually for Lee Angel, the line she launched in 1999 and named after her third and youngest son, Lee. Characterized by pieces that are either dead-simple or delightfully over-the-top, Lee Angel strikes a perfect balance between fashion’s haute and its humor, and is reputed to be the best source for modern, feminine, and affordable costume jewelry today. "There’s always a freedom, innocence, and prettiness to Lee Angel," says Assoulin. "It’s stylish, but never over-styled. So you’ll never look like you’ve tried too hard."