Gorjana, A CA-Based Jewelry Brand, Opens On Greenwich Avenue

GREENWICH, CT — Gorjana, a jewelry brand founded in Laguna Beach, Calif., recently opened up its first Connecticut storefront on Greenwich Avenue.

The 1,350 square foot store is located at 160 Greenwich Ave. Inside the zen-like, laid back California-vibe space, customers can find a variety of hand-designed jewelry pieces, such as necklaces, earrings, rings, bracelets, charms and accessories — all at different price points.

There’s a fashion collection, as well as a higher-end fine collection and a selection of 18k gold plated styles.

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A “meanings wall” is dedicated to everything related to astrology-inspired, alphabet and gemstone pieces. Another wall is dedicated to bespoke engraving, which is custom and complimentary.

Store manager Nicole Liptak said the reaction from the Greewich community has been very positive since the doors first opened on Jan. 21.

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“We’ve had a lot of people come in who already know the brand, so they’re really excited to have their own store here,” Liptak said. “In general, even if they don’t know the brand, people always come in and are so excited.”

The Greenwich store is the company’s 26th brick-and-mortar location in the country. The first opened in Laguna Beach, Calif. in 2016, and the second opened in the West Village in New York City shortly after.

Jason Griffin Reidel, co-founder and CEO of gorjana, grew up in upstate New York, and still has a home in Manhattan. He’s familiar with New England from visiting family over the years, and said Greenwich was the perfect spot for a new store.

“Greenwich is a town that we very much liken to our first store based in Laguna,” he said. “A lot of our mentality is to open retail in markets we understand, and in communities we’re really fond of that we can see ourselves living in and interacting with so we can engrain ourselves in the community.”

The company is named after Reidel’s wife, Gorjana. It all started innocently in a Southern California apartment in 2004.

The newlywed couple, both fresh out of school, was trying to figure out what they were going to do in the real world.

As a hobby, Gorjana began designing jewelry in their apartment. She had briefly worked for a high-end jewelry designer, and had an interest in fashion.

“We were in our 20’s, and really had no money. She liked this idea of being able to hand design jewelry that was at a lower price point that people our age could afford,” Reidel said.

The couple put some pieces in a consignment store in Southern California, and the jewelry was a success.

For about eight years, they went door-to-door and traveled all over the country to get their jewelry in specialty boutiques. In 2014, the Reidels got into the department store business and Nordstrom. The company has steadily grown ever since.

But despite the growth and success, the team at gorjana remains small and committed. Gorjana herself still designs the products.

Reidel described the jewelry as not overly trendy.

“It’s nice, it’s elevated, but it’s casual and comfortable,” he said, a reflection of the Laguna and California lifestyle.

Reidel also said the products are inclusive.

“I love the inclusivity,” Reidel said. “We have something for everyone for all ages. We also have something for all price categories. We have $38 power gemstone bracelets, and then just this last holiday, we had a special edition $1,800 diamond Tennis bracelet.”

Many of the jewelry designs are versatile and feature adjustable clasps and sliding beads, which allows the wearer to customize. Pieces can be mixed and matched, Reidel said, adding that layering and stacking is a big component for gorjana jewelry.

Gorjana also helps design the retail spaces.

“We want you to feel comfortable when you’re in our stores. It’s like you’re in someone’s house. It’s a comfortable place to go into,” Reidel said.

Jewelry is something people get emotionally attached to. As a kid, Reidel can remember sitting on his grandfather’s lap, looking at his grandfather’s ring. When he died, the ring was left to Reidel.

“It’s so fascinating because I carry a part of his energy with me,” Reidel said. “And I can feel his energy in the ring.”

As gorjana continues to expand, Reidel hopes to make similar impacts on other people. Greenwich is among several stores that will open across the country in the first half of this year.

Next up is a storefront in Park City, Utah, and another one in Portant, Ore.

“As your company is growing and more people are growing your brand, and the more people are interacting with it and shopping at stores or shopping online, it’s just more positive impact you’re making,” Reidel said. “It’s pretty awesome. That’s what matters to us. It’s that spark of joy you’re bringing someone.”

Not only can customers shop in-store, they can shop online and schedule for in-store pickup, or same-day home delivery.

For more information on gorjana, go to their website, or follow them on Instagram.