A conversation with Charlotte jewelry designer Samantha McCall
For many years, self-taught jewelry designer Samantha McCall loved harnessing her creativity to create jewelry pieces for herself, especially for special occasions. When she realized how difficult it was for others to find similar pieces at affordable prices, she saw an opportunity.
“For quite some time, I dreamed about starting my own business and creating daringly bold fashion earrings and accessories,” she said.
In the spring of 2018, she did just that. Primaura was born out of a desire for fresh, bold, and modern statement jewelry. McCall has an extensive background in fashion, working first with Estée Lauder, then spending a decade in sales and marketing with divisions of Ralph Lauren and the Gucci Group. She recalls meeting Tom Ford, then Womenswear Designer and Creative Director for Gucci, as one of the highlights of her career. Her work in the fashion industry has always inspired her, especially the fashion community in Charlotte.
“Charlotte’s scene ranges from earthy breweries to chic cocktail bars and restaurants — that creates an incredibly broad range of fashion opportunities,” she explains. “Charlotte is a very embracing city for entrepreneurs. There is tremendous support for those pursuing a dream. I love this city for that, and so much more.”
McCall emphasized how she looks to trends to inform her design process, but doesn’t rely on them. Having fashion-forward friends in the city, she prefers to base her designs off of what works for her and the ladies around her. She describes her style as “the same old… but different,” usually keeping to light and pearly tones and tailored trousers, leaving the boldness for a piece or two of statement jewelry.
When you look at Primaura’s designs, you’ll notice many are inspired by animals of all kinds. They offer designs centered around many insects, in particular, and Primaura’s logo even includes a backdrop of a bee. McCall gives credit where credit is due, explaining that bug fashion has been on the catwalk for decades. But for her, the outdoors offer peace and happiness, and she hopes to represent that in her jewelry.
“Nature is such a great source for jewelry inspiration…My interpretation is what is exciting about these larger-than-life insects! They provide endless design opportunities.”
In addition to drawing from the outdoors, McCall also looks to cultures around the world when designing her pieces. As far as those still on the horizon, she says to look for the beauty of Indian culture that she embraced, with lots of gold, gemstones, medallions and turquoise making an appearance. Combining her two major sources of inspiration, you may also see designs inspired by tigers, wild cats that are native to the Indian subcontinent.
When asked which design she was most proud of, she mentioned her recent Panther earrings, which include an evolving gold sphere and a four-leaf clover. While still subtle, this piece alludes to the Carolina Panthers, and holds a bit of hometown pride.
McCall primarily sells at pop-up shops in the Charlotte area, and feels fulfilled by the sense of instant gratification they offer to customers. Her goal is for every woman who wears Primaura to feel a confidence boost when they put her designs on, ready to walk out into the world feeling beautiful and bold.
Visit the website today to see more from this talented Charlotte jewelry designer:primaura.us