The Jewelry of Laura Wass: As Easy As WXYZ

When designer Laura Wass of WXYZ Jewelry first ventured into Brooklyn, it was magical. “I moved into a surreal converted factory in Brooklyn—stair-cases made of intersecting chairs, walls built from pastel vintage suitcases, a waterfall for a shower, secret peepholes, a full darkroom and woodshop. It was the epitome of what I imagined my New York experience would be built on. It was an inspiring and crazy kind of initiation.” After a brief foray into Manhattan (what was she thinking?), Wass returned to Brooklyn about a year ago and “hasn’t looked back since.” She has studio space in 3rd Ward, a multidisciplinary workspace in East Williamsburg, where she finds herself “surrounded by entrepreneurs, photographers, designers, craftspeople, web developers, engineers—and we all end up collaborating on each other’s projects and helping each other’s businesses grow.” Wass is inspired by and incorporates the industrial resources that surround her and “utilize[s] super old-school techniques and explore[s] cutting edge technology and unconventional manufacturing methods.” This juxtaposition of industrial materials and finely wrought designs makes for a unique and beautifully realized jewelry line. Wass calls her approach “the intersection of the unexpected and the obvious” and gave us an example of one of the more innovative materials that she used. “We were trying to figure out how to make… beads that weren’t too heavy, thinking, what else is flexible yet durable and feels great on the skin? Can you guess what type of product we ended up emulating? Think intimate toys…”