Oriana LaMarca is not only the designer behind beautiful, curated gemstone arm parties and accessories. She is also known for her philanthropy efforts. Such as her November fundraiser with the ECHO foundation.
Staten Island City Lifestyle: Tell me a little bit about your bracelet line. How did you begin and what sparked your interest?
Oriana LaMarca: I grew up working for my family business in the interior design world. I always loved fashion. I came across beaded bracelets back in 2012/2013 and started to make them as a hobby. Little by little I started an Etsy shop, then I took some time off to plan a wedding abroad. Six months after I was married I was diagnosed with Bells Palsy so I was home for 3-4 months. During that time I guess you can say I turned a negative into a positive by diving into my business. In 2016 I set up my website, began having jewelry parties at people’s houses to gain exposure and left my parents’ business to focus on Oriana LaMarca Designs full-time. Three years ago I went through a divorce and turned that negative into a positive by throwing all of my energy into growing my business, networking, collaborating, and turning it into something viable.
Staten Island City Lifestyle: Where do you get your inspiration from? All of your collections seem so perfectly aligned. The colors of the bracelets as well as the accessories you offer for each collection are always so well thought out.
Oriana LaMarca: I love color. I have over 90 different color gemstones that I work with today and I guess you can say my passion for creating color stories is what really brings my arm parties to life. I design 9 signature collections each inspired by different destinations I’ve been to and the colors that represent that destination. For instance, the Sicilian Chic collection is very much Dolce & Gabbana inspired, my New York collection is a little edgier, my Hamptons collection is a more nautical vibe, St. Barth’s has a pastel color palette, Miami is more brights and neons.
Staten Island City Lifestyle: I see that you are big into charity work and donations for a great cause. Recently you held a fundraiser in partnership with Staten Island’s ECHO Foundation. Can you tell us more about that and how it came to fruition?
Oriana LaMarca: The initiative is called Arm Candy for a Cause. It started 7 years ago. I had a woman working for me whose nephew was suffering from a rare brain cancer and the whole situation was heartbreaking. I always felt very blessed in my life and loved the idea of being able to give back. I came up with Arm Candy for a Cause where I basically design a bracelet for a specific cause and the color of the gemstone has a significance or meaning related to the organization as well as the charm. We just held our 7th annual fundraiser in partnership with the ECHO Foundation which helps children and families in need. I always choose a foundation that I have a personal connection with. This year a friend of mine, Eric Eremita who is Staten Island-based, is a friend of some board members at ECHO and he was able to connect me to the organization. This year the bracelet is a marsala jade which is a cranberry color that represents the organization and the charm says HOPE which is to give hope to children and their families during difficult times.
You can shop Oriana LaMarca Designs at orianalamarca.com