"The word keepsake takes the materialism out of it and holds the symbolism. A keepsake is not something you giveaway, it's something that you keep." - Paula Mallis
Paula Mallis is a healer, a doula, a mother, and an entrepreneur who opened WMN Space, the wildly popular women's gathering ground in L.A.'s burgeoning Culver City neighborhood, in February 2017. Already written about in glossy publications including Vogue, Mallis is no stranger to a cool and calming style, which is not only apparent in the inspiring ladies of Los Angeles who gather at her workshops, women's gatherings and sessions held at her modernly warm space, but also by the pieces that comprise her jewelry collection — where each stone and strand hold a special meaning inspired by a major life moment (or two). Mallis invited us into her home, where we rifled through her collection to find out how she does her daily jewelry wardrobe, and why meaningful moments and the moon are so important when it comes to accessories.
WHAT DOES “KEEPSAKE” MEAN TO YOU? WHAT PIECE OF JEWELRY COMES TO MIND WHEN YOU THINK OF KEEPSAKES?
The word keepsake takes the materialism out of it and holds the symbolism. A keepsake is not something you giveaway, it's something that you keep. Something I can give my daughter Madeleine and if she doesn't connect with it, then to my son.
FIRST JEWELRY MEMORY?
Admiring my grandmother’s jewelry on her. Women in my family are creatures of habit and everything they wear means something. My grandmother was very practical with her jewelry and not showy. She wore three small rings all the time. I still have them all today.
WHAT IS YOUR FAVORITE PIECE IN YOUR JEWELRY BOX?
My very dear friend, Savannah King designs her own namesake collection. I have four pieces from her that I wear daily, tourmaline earrings for protection, a carnelian ring that was a gift when I opened WMN Space, my 1935 buffalo coin amulet ring, and a grounding pendant with a stone from Kauai.
ANY JEWELRY SUPERSTITIONS OR RITUALS?
My whole life is based on rituals. For jewelry specifically, I take everything off before bed all my earrings, rings, and bracelets – except my necklaces. If I ever receive or am gifted a new piece I clear it before wearing it, using sage to cleanse the energy of the piece.
WHAT ARE YOUR EVERYDAY PIECES OF JEWELRY?
My wedding band and engagement ring, the stone in it belonged to my husband Todd's Grandmother. His mother also gave me a necklace of diamonds when Madeleine was born. The stones are all family stones from older pieces that were made into this new necklace for me. I haven't taken it off once since the day she was born. As well as the pieces from Savanah King that are my everyday essentials.
ANY FAVORITE ANTIQUE PIECES?
The diamonds that are in my necklace and belonged to my husband’s family. My mother-in-law also gifted a necklace to Madeleine on her first birthday with one diamond. She gets to wear it on special occasions and I love that it’s a gift she will be able to treasure it forever.
WHAT JEWELRY HAVE YOU BOUGHT RECENTLY?
The 1935 buffalo coin ring and carnelian ring, which was a gift when I opened WMN Space.
HOW MANY JEWELRY BOXES DO YOU OWN?
No boxes really, but I use several little dishes for small pieces and hang my necklaces on the wall of our bathroom.
FAVORITE STARLING DESIGN?
The moon is very significant in my life and I connect with all of the moon pieces. Especially the little crescent moon bracelet with diamonds.
TELL US THE STORY OF GETTING YOUR EARS PIERCED!
It was a big day because my mom had made me wait for so long. We went to Claire's and I remember being frustrated that I had to wait so long to change out piercing studs for my own fun earrings. Since then I've gotten a lot of piercings. Now I'm looking forward to getting to Madeleine getting her ears pierced.
Thank you so much, Paula & Madeleine!