Margo Morrison New York Brings Trunk Show To The Clark
By Lisa Green
Margo Morrison was formally trained as a pianist, not a jewelry designer. But she’s never left music, really — she’s just exchanged one tactile sensation for another, transferring the patterns, improvisational influences and harmony of music into her line of semi-precious stones and freshwater pearl jewelry.
The Sandisfield weekender will be bringing a special trunk show of more than 200 pieces to The Clark’s museum store this weekend. And if you’re not familiar with Margo Morrison jewelry, this would be a lovely way to get to know it (and meet the designer, who will be there on Saturday) — before or after a visit to the Van Gogh exhibition that’s just opened.
“Music is a huge part of life, and the way I design my jewelry is like notes on a staff,” Morrison says. “Some of my designs have random patterns and look improvisational. When we’re designing the pieces, we say we like to make them sing.”
It’s such a lovely image, the idea of visual music — shimmery, sparkly and rhythmical — dancing around you. The designs are constructed with cord that’s barely visual, allowing the stones and pearls to look as if they’re floating —you’re wearing it, it’s not wearing you, Morrison puts it.
After running a cultural arts magazine in Miami, Morrison moved to New York and, no longer playing piano, needed a creative outlet. About 15 years ago, a single lariat in a shop window inspired her to begin making jewelry, first for herself. She designed and created each piece until Bloomingdales took on her line. Earrings start at around $90, and necklaces range from $250 to about $2,500.
Now, Margo Morrison New York is carried by Neiman Marcus, ABC Carpet & Home, fine jewelry stores and retailers in London, Luxembourg, Brussels, Johannesburg, Tokyo and the Caribbean. Her work has adorned some of the biggest names in the celebrity world. She has four artisans on staff and is continually creating new designs to bring to four or five industry shows per year.
She credits her retreat in Sandisfield as an influence on her work. “I come out here and I’m inspired,” Morrison says. “I’m looking at the pond in the middle of nowhere, but I’m 22 minutes from town. It feels like such a creative place.” When she’s in the country, she’s reluctant to leave the sylvan scene outside her house, but she likes to walk the paths near the Norman Rockwell Museum, always accompanied by her beloved Italian greyhound, Ella.
Although Morrison doesn’t typically attend many trunk shows, the fact that it’s in the Berkshires makes it a special occasion, and she’s excited about the Clark event. The museum’s Japanese-influenced architecture is a fitting backdrop for her jewelry, which has a similar aesthetic (and indeed, her collection has a large following in Japan).
“It’s the most gorgeous gift shop you’ve ever seen,” she says.
Margo Morrison New York Trunk Show
Saturday and Sunday, June 20-21, 11 a.m. to 5 p.m.
The Clark, Williamstown, MA
No admission fee to visit the museum store.