I'm Lauren Stat, Founder and Chief Figa Maker.
I fell in love at first sight with a friend's Figa necklace at a 4th of July party. It was fresh from Brazil and I wanted one immediately.
As I went down a Figa rabbit hole the next day, I became even more obsessed. The fist is symbolic of power and femininity at the same time. It is said to distract evil and those with bad intentions with the obscenity of the gesture. It was a talisman for fertility in pre-roman times. I also discovered that one of my best friends has a small Figa tattoo at the nape of her neck that is always hidden by her hair. I needed one STAT.
At the time, I was both trying to get pregnant and working on accepting all aspects of myself. The Figa, a fist of power and femininity, deeply resonated with me. I am a woman in STEM with a Bachelors of Science in Math and Chemistry from Stanford. At the same time, I love to create, to craft cocktails and delicious treats, and to add glitter to almost everything. I needed a Figa. I needed multiple Figa necklaces, in all different styles and colors.
After a few days of researching trips to Brazil (to buy Figas obviously,) my husband wisely suggested that I design my own Figa and put my STEM super powers to work by 3d printing them. Within a week, I had a new 3d printing lab set up in my tiny garage in Austin and was working into the early hours of the morning teaching myself how to use the 3d modeling program blender and how to print.
After about a month of trial-and-error, mostly focused on the "problem" of getting more glitter incorporated into the designs, the Figas were ready to be incorporated into jewelry designs. It was the moment I'd been training for the last 30 years. I've been designing and crafting jewelry since elementary school, where my playground friendship bracelet store funded my insatiable sweet tooth and love of Knott's Berry farm. I learned to wire-wrap and started creating gemstone beaded jewelry to wear myself and for gifts while at Stanford. I even took classes in metalworking and jewelry design at RISD.
I had initially intended to pursue all things sparkly after graduating, and formed LaurenElaina Designs LLC. Instead, bills and student debt happened. I ended up focusing on my career at Accenture, where I became the youngest female Managing Director and led global teams of changemakers who I still deeply miss. After resigning from Accenture in 2021 to start a new career serving on various public and private boards, I finally had time to return to jewelry making. It was my Figa obsession that propelled me to re-launch my jewelry business.
The rest of this story is just beginning. We will write it together. Become part of the story - share your love of Figas with me on Instagram @figajewelry