Glitter Girl: Samantha Wills

Written by on March 5, 2013 in Fashion, Glitter Girl - 18 Comments
Glitter Girl: Samantha Wills by Trent Bailey Photography for Glitter Guide

You may not have heard of her yet, but Samantha Wills is a name you won’t want to forget. The 100% self-taught jewelry designer has a dedicated following in her native Australia, and the ornate statement pieces she creates are quickly gaining international popularity. Samantha’s style is at once vintage and modern, often influenced by her travels. She splits her time between New York City and Sydney, which means she has an abundance of stimuli to inspire new designs. An innate eye for design, enhanced by her business sense and appreciation for hand-crafted, quality pieces, has helped Samantha become a growing force among jewelry designers. Samantha’s strong sense of style and her gorgeous “Bohemian-luxe” pieces are just a couple of reasons we can’t get enough of her!

Trent & Dara of Trent Bailey Photography

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  • Tell us about your jewelry brand, Samantha Wills?
    About ten years ago, I started making jewelry at my dining room table as a hobby and eventually selling it at a jewelry stall on Sydney’s Bondi Beach on the weekends. In 2004, I was given the opportunity to purchase a booth during Australian Fashion Week for $500 and my goal was to sell enough to break even, so I was gobsmacked to write $17,000 worth of orders—the next day I quit my job and the rest is history. We are still fairly new in the US market, but we have a terrific sales force, a great PR team and we are really focusing on growth in the United States. Samantha Wills jewelry can currently be found on samanthawills.com, as well as in select department stores and boutiques nationwide.

  • How did you build your company and expand internationally and what were some of the challenges? 
    Building a brand internationally is difficult & the challenges surround ensuring your brand’s message is consistent with the core of your brand, but still relevant to the consumer market you are speaking to. This is a continual development and one that allows you to learn a lot and analyze your business greatly. I think I’ve been able to successfully grow my business by being consistent to the quality of the brand and its messages, and never compromising.

  • This is the design desk, this is where is all starts! ” ~ Samantha

    Tell us a bit about your creative process!
    I am very inspired by the Samantha Wills woman – in this day and age we, as brands, are in a very luxurious position to be able to speak directly with our consumer. I love designing for her and love seeing how she wears the designs. I have an AMAZING team, which includes a production manager. She and I work closely and travel to production houses to work with our craftsman to ensure the quality is to our brand standard.

  • My work space is constantly changing and the moodboard is a reflection of what I am working on at the time & I like that it can change from week to week.” ~ Samantha

  • We love your personal style and your Instagram feed fills us with inspiration! Your home is certainly a reflection of that style — tell us a bit about the decor and your work space.
    Aw! Thank you ! You know whats funny? A lot of people (kindly) say that to me, but the thing is, I have only really just found my true personal style in the last few years. My early and mid twenties, I feel, were very awkward and a little lost, searching for my style and how to execute it correctly. I think I always knew my aesthetic, but had no idea how to translate or construct it. I feel very confident within my own style now and feel that it is very true to me. My home is definitely a reflection of my personal style, a true mix of Bohemian Luxe that, in an interiors sense, mixes luxe french mirrors with raw Indian carved wooden coffee tables. It’s faux fur rugs with skull & horse prints framed on my walls. I love the juxtaposition and I think it really allows you to personalize your style (be it interior or fashion).

     


  • Tell us about your stationary line and upcoming projects.
    I have had a long term obsession with all things paper and ink so I collaborated with my favorite Australian artist, Kelly Smith of Birdy & Me to create a stationary collection. The collection features exclusive feminine illustrations incorporating SW jewels into Kelly’s signature style water colors.

    We have a small collection of luxe jewelry boxes that we are expanding into other small home items. And also in the works is SW Leather, which will be a hand bag collection that focuses on clutches that feature pendants from our jewelry line.

  • How do you split your time between your homes? Is it hard to travel so much, what are your travel tips?
    I usually do 6 weeks in NYC and 2 weeks in Sydney. It is a lot of time on a plane,  I fly QANTAS & they are just great, I use my plane as an office now! I gets lots of work done onboard! Samantha’s Travel Tips:

    -Choose an airline group – and stick with it! This will allow you to climb your frequent flyer status and hopefully be able to upgrade on long haul trips (be warned though, if you are lucky enough to get an upgrade, it is hard to go back, and the trips you don’t get upgraded are filled with longing to be in the next cabin!). There are many benefits if you are loyal to an airline, link your credit cards to accumulate points to your account, if you don’t use them for upgrade, it  is likely you can put them towards an end of year adventure and choose a holiday destination paid for by your points.

    -This may sounds silly, but I am going to put it out there anyway. I have frizzy hair, the not curly, not straight kind (thanks Mum). I find it much easier to wash my hair pre- flight and curl it with curling tongs, without using any product. After I land I brush it out  (maybe add some serum) and it has worn in waves. This is a lot easier to manage if you have to run straight from your flight to a business meeting. A natural wave and a smile may not hide the jet lag, but it’ll save you some time if you are in a rush!-Remove all makeup when you are settling in on the plane (assuming your seat is not next to Bradley Cooper, whereby, keep your makeup on and charm the hell out of him for the duration of the flight, I hope for you sake this happens on the longest leg of the journey!)

    - Remove all makeup when you are settling in on the plane (assuming your seat is not next to Bradley Cooper, whereby, keep your makeup on and charm the hell out of him for the duration of the flight, I hope for you sake this happens on the longest leg of the journey!). I am obsessed with a  SKII Facial treatment essence (magic potion!) under a Vitamin E oil moisturizer. And drink as much water as you can. I know this is age old advice, but trust me, your body will thank you for it

  • These couture pieces are what I do as my hobby. With absolutely  no commercial or wearable needs, they are so much fun to create!” ~ Samantha

  • A lot of my collections are inspired by poetry or verses. I like to do my take on calligraphy. Combining words with art is a real love of mine.“~ Samantha

  • Where are your favorite places to shop for the home?
    I love online outlet stores for value like Hayneedle or overstock.com – you can find some real winners if you are patient enough to trawl through. I got my french mirror, peacock chairs and tan moroccan pouf from these stores for a steal. Finding a beautiful piece for your home at a bargain price makes it all the more sweet!

  • These are my drawers of trinkets & vintage pieces. I separate old pieces & found objects by metal color, so when I am doing the couture pieces, everything is easily accessible.” ~ Samantha

  • You always have fantastic floral arrangements, do you make any yourself? What are your favorite kind to display in your home?
    Thank you! I have a huge love for nature & I think it is incredibly opulent to bring nature inside. One day I hope to have a full indoor garden area where I can live amongst the flowers! But until then, I buy flowers from New York flower markets, which are incredibly accessible to buy regularly (2 dozen white roses for $10!? – that’s incredible!). I do all my arrangements myself and like to keep them pretty natural and organic. Peonies are my favorite, but not always in season. Roses are pretty easy to get all year round and I have the luxury of them being inexpensive when I am in NYC.

  • How do you sparkle?
    To sparkle, I think you should be the type of person you would like to meet. I think the more people you meet, the more you know what you find appealing about others & these are etchings you can add to your repertoire to make those traits your own. You know when you walk away from certain people you meet and feel like you are walking on air? There is a reason for that, the way they engage, they way they ask questions, their body language, their knowledge, their experience, their open kindness, their opinion. All of these things are appealing to me and I believe make someone sparkle, I hope I can implement some of these elements into my persona and continue to evolve that daily.

  • http://barefoot-duchess.blogspot.gr/ barefoot duchess blog

    She is so talented! Love her style too

  • atl

    Love the dress she is wearing in the first pictures and that romper. Great article.

  • http://www.facebook.com/kellzkera Kelly-Ann Gaskin

    Love her work, her style & her workstation.

  • http://www.popcosmo.com/ PopCosmo

    Not only did I find a new great jewelry source, but she has great tips for managing frizzy/curly hair. Definitely going to give it a shot. Thanks for the interview and introducing us to her!

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  • Ashley

    Where can I get that dress!?!?!!?

  • Naomi

    she’s such a talented and beautiful person, love her jewellery!

  • http://herheartcriesfowl.blogspot.com/ Angela

    So beautiful!

  • Karli

    She has the best hair ever.

  • findlovekeep.blogpost.com.au

    Gorgeous! Such a beautiful apartment… the arrangement of the pictures on the wall is just perfect

  • molly_gwen

    Any ideas where the couch in photo 11 is from? Or where to find one similar? And her romper/dress in photo 22 is fab!

  • Monyale

    As an emerging jewelry designer, I find all the Glitter Girls inspiring and she is no exception…love her style and work.

  • http://www.jeweldivas.com.au/ Jewel Divas Style

    It’s a pity we didn’t see pics of the other rooms. The bedroom, kitchen, her wardrobe, even upstairs. We’ve seen this room a million times before and I’d really like to see the rest of the place.

  • http://twitter.com/alissapolansky Alissa Polansky

    Would love a source on that beautiful mirror above the fireplace. Love the photos and lulu frost jewels!

  • http://twitter.com/ohjenb Jen Bass

    I am so in love with that dress in the first pic and jewelry designs are amazing!! xo

  • heatther

    anyone know where to get that dress? gorgeous!

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