Kali Hawk Turns Acting Success Into Her Own Jewelry Line
Beyond being a boss female entrepreneur and actress, Kali Hawk simply loves what she does. After her success on the big screen landing acting roles in movies like Couples Retreat and Bridesmaids, she invested in herself and turned her acting money into launching her own jewelry line: H.CROWNE.
Having only started 4 years ago, the luxury jewelry line has been seen on all the biggest names in entertainment, from Beyonce to Kylie Jenner to Quavo. Hawk prides herself on the quality of her product, giving consumers that irreplaceable joy in treating themselves with only the best.
Fun fact, Kali is the first black female jeweler to have her custom pieces featured on the cover of Vogue. The legendary Madonna was also sporting her iconic jewelry for the 150th anniversary of Harper’s Bazaar. King Ice caught up with Hawk in Los Angeles to discuss her favorite part of being a jeweler.
What’s more important to you, style cut design size clarity of diamonds?
The joy. I have to see the joy and you can tell. When it comes down to the detail of what you're doing, some people say “oh this doesn't make a difference.” I'll go “hey wait a minute.” Even on a semi-fine ring, I'll say “okay this is gold-plated, but the shade of yellow is is not quite right. They’ll be like “how did you even see that? No one will care.” But yes, they will care because when you show them the two of them. They always pick the better one.
People are innately attuned to quality, even if we don't know what can be made available to us. In our hearts, we all want the best. I'm always wanting to always give the best, whatever that means. If it's going to be of a certain cut, it has to tickle your spirit. Not just be something that puts a twinkle in your eye. For me, the whole company is a spiritual endeavor.
What’s the most fulfilling part of being a jeweler?
To see how excited people are with their purchases and how much good luck it brings them. For a lot of people, buying jewelry seems frivolous. It's something maybe they hadn't given themselves permission to do. There's a whole concept of treat yourself: you have to tell yourself that you’re allowed to have something nice. The fact that people struggle with that, I like giving them something that they can feel good about treating themselves with. If you have something you feel good about, it makes you feel good when you look at it and you put it on. That feeling is what you take out into the world and you're now magnetically attracted to more opportunities to feel good. I have people telling me they’re wearing my jewelry and all these amazing, lucky things happen to them.
My one DJ friend, he was wearing some simple diamond tennis necklaces I did for him, and one gold Cuban Link chain mixed in so it’s a nice texture. He said when he put those on, “look I've been a deejaying for a long time but when I tell you, people were dancing on the tables. Dudes we're coming up to me like ‘yooo.’” It’s something about the jewelry.” Itt’s attracting the biggest stars in the world for a reason, like there's something. He said he has all this other jewelry that’s great, he has all these great, amazing watches, but it’s those particular necklaces.
I have a woman friend who works as an executive at a small nonprofit company, so nothing flashy going on there at all. She’s in an office at a desk, and she bought a few rings from me. She’s a mom, has kids and a household to support. She had to let herself even splurge in a tiny way to get something nice. She’s wearing the Taylor Swift multi-colored eternity bands, she just had one. She’s at her desk and she said her boss came in and just looked at them. Then she came in again. She has no real connection with her boss but she started to wear these rings. Not only was the woman coming in all the time, she sat on her desk one day and asked her to try on the ring. I’m like “you’re about to get a raise, you’re welcome.” [laughs]
But that was a ring that was $198, she loves it so much and I love it so much. It’s the love for what I’m doing and the love for what I’m putting out, that’s what people connect with. They love it when they have it. Other people love seeing how much they love it and people want that feeling. Everyone’s looking to get high on something, I’m high on life. I’m high on sparkle. I’m high on jewelry. I love it!
Most iconic hip-hop chain in your opinion?
It has to be Roc-A-Fella. I’m a New Yorker, so anything that Jay-Z does stands above all. When you think about Jay-Z, you think about the John Wick series: he works for the high table. In hip-hop, Jay Z is the high table. Anything he’s doing was always a little bit ahead of the curve. He cared about quality too, it’s a very New York thing.
Even just the idea of the name, it's a play on Rockefeller who was once the richest man in the world. He took over the oil industry with his focus on quality and being able to streamline a business where he could offer the best, most uniform quality, industry-wide. People didn’t like it, but he had the balls to try to do it. In terms of jewelry, I’d like to do the same thing. I’m comfortable with being that person who’s willing to go out on a limb to offer supreme quality across the board, across all price points to everyone. I’m willing to take that chance. Jay Z is willing to take that chance with his music and with his jewelry, so Roc-A-Fella is the best! [chuckles]
Anything you want to let us know?
I love John Wick. The details, that’s quality filmmaking across the board. The lighting is great, the wardrobe is great, the fucking tailoring is great. Whatever type of beard dye they’re using on him, that’s not no just-for-men dye box they’re putting on his beard. They’re doing hair by hair. [laughs]
When I think about how they describe John Wick, they say he’s a man of commitment, focus and sheer fucking will. That’s me when it comes to my business. I'm definitely committed, focused, very willful, and determined when it comes to making hot shit that people will love. I want the stars to love, I want their fans to love, and I want their fans to be to able afford it. I want people to enjoy it. I want it to be all love.