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En Route: Quiet Storms

Reshma Patel, owner of Quiet Storms, photographed by Bridget Badore for The Style Line

Photos by Bridget Badore for The Style Line

Quiet Storms

Address: 142 Grand St, Brooklyn, NY 11249

Story by Rachel Schwartzmann – Shop Quiet Storms – Photos by Bridget Badore for The Style Line

Ethereal, modern and one-of-a-kind, Quiet Storms

Reshma Patel, owner of Quiet Storms, photographed by Bridget Badore for The Style Lineis setting a new standard in how we think about the role jewelry plays in our life and style. At the helm of the recently-opened Brooklyn-based shop (though in our books it’s already a definite neighborhood staple), owner Reshma Patel hopes to cultivate celebration amongst women who value personal style and investing in long-lasting treasures. As she explained in our interview below, “Our jewelry collections elicit smiles and surprise, joy and confidence. The wearer transforms the piece, and the piece then becomes another meaningful layer of their personal style.” Furthermore, Reshma’s thoughtful efforts also extend to the carefully selected designers she works with in order to maintain a unique, fresh and dynamic assortment all year round.

Speaking more to the above, simply visiting the Quiet Storms storefront is an experience in itself. Nestled in South Williamsburg, the airy boutique’s plant-adorned corners and breathtaking communal table with encased pieces, ceramic jewelry boxes and dainty mirrors (Reshma hopes that these inviting details will entice visitors to stay a while) are just a few of the elements that make the shopping experience truly human. So it should come as no surprise how excited we were to have an in-depth visit with the inspiring shop-boss behind it all. Without giving too much away, discover more from our morning with Reshma below who kindly shared her professional story, her thoughts on the jewelry design community and what role creativity plays in some of the world’s bigger conversations featuring lovely photos captured by Bridget Badore for The Style Line.

I would say, I’m a New Yorker (born and raised!),

a wife, a mother and an entrepreneur. When I’m not working, I love to travel, mainly to coastal destinations where we can scuba dive or surf. Playing tennis, weekly yoga classes and and playing board games keeps me sane. My five year old daughter is a real crafter so we spend a lot of time with felt, glitter, beads and googely eyes. My husband and I love to cook and entertain, so on weekends we usually hole up at home with family and friends. After we put our daughter to bed, we usually break into game nights by the fire (Mafia, Celebrity, Spyfall) or dance parties! I value my family and friends for their humor and support, and I value thoughtfulness in all aspects of life. I think there are small ways we can all live more responsible and concsiencious lives, if we try.

As a vegetarian and animal rights supporter, I set out to make responsible choices in what I eat and what I purchase, with the hope that my decisions will lead to less animal suffering. There are big and small ways to lead thoughtful lives. I think the recent election has shown us that we are all responsible for each other and the world we live in. So I look forward to a renewed spirit of activism and social consciousness.

Brooklyn is one of the epicenters of independent design – especially in jewelry it seems!

Was this a factor in deciding where to open Quiet Storms and generally what has it been like to foster a small business in a place like Brooklyn?

I’ve lived in Brooklyn since ’99, but prior to opening Quiet Storms, I worked in Manhattan for fifteen years. Brooklyn has inspired who I am today and the spirit of independent design is at the heart of Quiet Storms so when I started thinking about the store and environment, I knew it had to be Brooklyn! I live nine blocks from my store and daughter’s school is nine blocks in the other direction. I feel fortunate to build my business so close to both.
Brooklyn definitely supports small businesses, in fact I think we seek out artisans and specialty stores that are really focused on quality products and designs. I love visiting and supporting our local cheese shop, and bakery or florist.  There’s comfort that comes with personalized service. I’ve loved getting to know our neighbors and I think they appreciate that we take the time to think about their personal style and introduce them to designers and styles their seeing for the first time.

How has running a business and fully immersing yourself in the world of jewelry inspired your approach to personal style and why is fashion your go-to medium of self expression?  

I’ve always loved fashion, but my tastes and habits have changed over the last two decades. I’m still a shopper and an enthusiast, but now I look for pieces that will last. I’m less interested in trends and more interested in points of view, materials, silhouettes. I think personal style is important, but it’s becoming more commercial and less personal. The pace of everything in retail feels frantic with fast-fashion and the constant cycling of collections. I equate it to a cup of coffee, you get your fix, but soon after you want/need more. That’s where jewelry comes in. Jewelry is designed to be worn and kept forever, and when its done well is timeless and transformative. Jewelry has both inherent and sentimental value, so for the wearer, if they decide to tuck something away and then bring it back out five years later, it will still be beautiful and relevant.

With reference to the shop’s slogan “There’s a storm approaching in NYC” how do you think this relates to the storm or wave of next generation designers?

I think of the designers I work with as quiet tempests. They are all so warm and down to earth, while immensely talented. I view their collections as wearable art, to collect and keep close. I have such respect for their commitment to original design and innovative jewelry design. I’m not a creator, but I know enough to realize how challenging it is to have original ideas and create something both modern and timeless. They are making fine jewelry exciting and accessible, and as independent designers, they are taking risks in a category that has traditionally been held by big, heritage houses and main-stream designers.

What advice would you have for them? 

Given that we’re a new retailer, I don’t have so much wisdom to share. I would encourage them to continue to be bold and original. The world has enough of everything, really. So I hope our designers continue to add new perspective to challenge ideas of mass-market commercialism.

How does Quiet Storms foster celebrating personal style?

We know that style is an important mode of self-expression so with that in mind, we try and create a unique experience both in store and online, which allows women to take the time to choose from a uniquely curated selection of  styles. We love when women ask, “What is that?”, it means they’re seeing something they haven’t before. Our jewelry collections elicit smiles and surprise, joy and confidence. The wearer transforms the piece, and the piece then becomes another meaningful layer of their personal style. They layer, mix and match our collections, with their own collections, creating completely original and personal looks. Most of our earrings are sold individually for this reason. Women are curating their ears now!

Quiet Storms is known for providing a curated assortment of modern collections and modernity is something we’re seeing a lot of within this new wave of fashion and lifestyle brands and it’s also something we talk about in our stories as it pertains to some of the world’s bigger conversations. In your mind who is the Quiet Storms woman and what makes her modern? 

I think the Quiet Storms woman is complex. She has a strong point of view, yet she is open to other’s ideas and embraces a diverse world. She can be both strong and soft, confident and vulnerable, and that’s okay. She appreciates beautiful design and leads a curated life, which stems from both a curiosity and passion for discovery.

What is one question you wish people asked you more often?

I don’t know if there’s one question, but I do wish that women felt more comfortable buying jewelry for themselves. Women often wait for occasions or for significant others to buy the pieces they love and want to have. I believe fine jewelry should be worn every day, and as women we should continue to invest in jewelry and ourselves.

How do you think creativity contributes to some of the world’s bigger conversations and how do you think Quiet Storms? playing a role in this?

I think creativity moves us forward as a race, it’s at the core of being human and can be expressed in so many ways writing, building, constructing, sculpting, singing, etc.

An idea created in India can make its way to New York and inspire people who have never set foot in the country. That’s why we’ve been conscious of seeking out designers from around the world and bringing their collections and perspective to Brooklyn. Creativity is ageless and color-blind, and can connect us in truly meaningful ways.

“I believe fine jewelry should be worn every day, and as women we should continue to invest in jewelry and ourselves.”