Nialaya’s luxe hippie jewelry outpost
And now for something completely L.A.: On Melrose Avenue, there's a black-walled shop full of glittering jewelry that's equal parts rocker cool, spirituality rich and outdoorsy tough.
Nialaya is the three-year-old company started by designer Jannick Olander, who's turned the arms of celebs such as Jay-Z and Fran Drescher into displays for custom-strung beaded bracelets. Olander started designing the bracelets for friends after an Indian shaman gave him a good-luck stone, and now anyone can stop by his shop to select premade bracelets and other jewelry or consult with staff on which crystals have desired energy properties, from aquamarine (abundance inducing) to wood (immunity strengthening), for custom-made pieces.
It sounds woo-woo, but leaving mystical claims aside, the jewelry is ruggedly cute and has the rare quality of looking as good on a hike as it does at a ladies' luncheon. Prices start at $200, with most items in the $300 to $400 range. We think the etched silver-bead pieces are especially handsome.
And we love the idea of stopping by the store, charming with its opium-den-meets-Beatles'-Maharishi-era aesthetic, to make up a unique mix of stones for an especially thoughtful, one-of-a-kind gift.
Nialaya, 7922 Melrose Ave.; 310-499-7162 or nialaya.com