Lagos [Steven] (1957 – ) Lagos is a privately held American jewelry company established by American artist and designer Steven Lagos. Born in Florida, he founded Lagos in 1977 at age 20.
In 1984, he met his mentor, an eighty-five year old Russian jeweler. It was from him that Steven learned old world craftsmanship. The experience also helped Lagos understand the importance of working with the highest quality materials.
Lagos’ parents encouraged his ambition to become an artist. At 17, Steven began creating jewelry sketches.
The Lagos brand is known for craftsmanship and, especially, for the proprietary design technique of textured, caviar-like beading. In 1984, Lagos created the brand’s iconic design, a textured, sterling silver known as Caviar. It was inspired by the raw material, hematite.
The company’s website describes how Steven Lagos finds inspiration: “Sights and sounds forever inspire him; most of which are captured from his frequent travels to Asia and Europe. [His] vision goes beyond product development…
“The artistry of Caviar is best captured through its creative process. It takes hundreds of steps to complete the many facets of a single Caviar creation. [The] process … starts with a hand-drawn sketch by Steven Lagos and finishes when the sterling silver is oxidized to create the sculptural qualities that make Caviar unique.”
The company has offices in New York and Bangkok while continuing to operate the flagship boutique it opened on Rittenhouse Square in Philadelphia, Pennsylvania in 1994.
LAGOS is sold in over 300 stores in the United States, including Neiman Marcus, Bloomingdale’s, Nordstrom, and Saks Fifth Avenue. It is also not unusual to find the Lagos brand in independent jewelry retailers throughout the United States.
Since 1977, LAGOS has created more than two million pieces. Steven Lagos estimates that he, alone, has created 10,000 pieces with 400 to 500 new designs each year.
In 1986, LAGOS introduced sterling silver pieces accented by 18-karat gold, semi-precious gemstones and caviar-like beading. This collection brought together silver and gold in individual pieces for the first time in LAGOS’ history.
In August 1999, Steven Lagos was inducted into the Council of Fashion Designers of America.