Jewel In The Crown | Camille Amanda
“It was difficult to design the wildly colorful, unique jewelry that was in my heart vs. what common sense told me would sell! But I’ve learned that success comes when we truly do what we love, even if that means going against the grain.”
What is it that you do Camille?
I’m a jewelry designer, based in NYC, who previously worked at Harper’s Bazaar and Barneys, and I launched my own line full of one-of-a-kind necklaces and earrings made from vintage treasures and semi-precious stones I’ve found all over the world.
What inspired you to design and create jewlery pieces and launch your own line?
It was always my dream to work for myself, share my love of color and inspire other women to wear and do what they love, but taking the leap of quitting my corporate job to launch my own business entirely on my own with very little savings and no outside investors was terrifying and very hard, but definitely the best decision of my life!
And with each piece of jewelry I create, I hope to inspire other women to share their own unique colors and wild dreams with the world – life is too short to do anything else!
How would you describe your pieces?
One-of-a-kind jewels made by hand from vintage treasures, gemstones and freshwater pearls, full of every color, joy and happiness in the world and in our hearts.
What keeps you going through tough days?
As independent and strong as I am, it would have been very hard to take the leap from a steady corporate job to running my own business without my very supportive parents and my fiancé. They all believed in me and my work before I believed in myself, and my mom gave me the initial loan that got me started – feeling all that love and support makes it easier. So hang on tight to those around you (whether it’s your biological family or your found family) who see you for the brilliant, shining person you truly are.
What’s your favourite quote?
My mom’s favorite quote is “go big or go home!” which I’ve found applies to most everything in life, especially jewelry and dreaming!”
What is one thing you learned the hard way?
You don’t need to be someone other than yourself to succeed.
When I first started designing jewelry, I was dying to make the wild and colorful jewels of my dreams, but I worried that they might be too bold and too bright. My necklaces and earrings looked nothing like what I saw in stores or magazines so I thought that I needed to tone down my vision to succeed. I tried designing more simple pieces, just using gold, silver and pearls instead of the entire rainbow, and not only did these pieces not sell, all the color drained from my life too!
It’s definitely scarier to follow your true vision, especially when it goes against the norm, but what the world needs is more of you, not more of something that is already out there.
What piece of advice would you give your 21-year-old self?
I would say this to my 21-year-old self: “Don’t be scared to be your brightest and most colorful self, the world needs more of you just as you are! You don’t need to change for anyone!”
What is the one thing you would tell someone who wants to make the move from dreaming to doing?
Literally just do it. Nothing in the world replaces the power of action, and it has to be everyday action, day after day. You have to get up each morning and do something that moves you closer to your dreams, even if you don’t feel like it and even if it’s just a little something. No “tomorrow” or “next week” or “one day”. Today is the only day and you can do it now!
What book(s) are on your bedside table?
Women Who Run with the Wolves by Clarissa Pinkola Estes (an incredibly inspiring book about the wild and creative nature of women and how we can tap into this part of ourselves even when the world around us is intent on putting us down.)
A Thousand Hills to Heaven by Josh Ruxin (a memoir of a couple who leaves their comfortable NYC life to follow their impossible dream of opening a healthcare center in Rwanda), and If I Was Your Girl by Meredith Russo (the incredible story of a transgender teen who is almost killed for being who she is yet perseveres anyway).
What is your favorite way to switch off from work?
Dancing around to Blondie, eating dessert and walking around New York City to discover new, inspiring street art!
At the end of the day, the thing I cherish most is…
My fiancé. At the end of the day, he is truly all that I need to be happy!
What advice would you store away for your older self?
To always remember how far I’ve come and to be grateful, happy, and proud of myself every day because all of my dreams and goals from earlier in my life came true!
Name 3 of your favourite websites for inspiration and/or learning
GalaDarling.com (daily magical rituals to live your best, most sparkly life and love yourself!), Our Open Road (a family of four living their dream and overlanding through South America…their beautiful photos and blog remind me that we can truly create our own lives) and Chrissy Teigen’s Twitter because she always reminds me to just laugh and have fun and enjoy myself!
Your 3 favourite biz tools
A journal, a pen and a quiet place – I’ve found that I come up with the best ideas and solutions just by listening to myself…giving ourselves the space to sit and think is so important, it’s so easy to get caught up in the “busy” part of business which drowns out our inner voice…which always knows best! Also, coffee.
You’re having a bad day with your biz? How do you get through it?
I put on my sparkly, glittery, colorful rainbow jewels and I instantly feel happier and remember why I’m doing what I do in the first place – to share color and joy and brighten up the bad days!
The best piece of advice you’ve been given?
To keep going and have faith.
Our dreams might not always be easy – that’s why they are worthy of being dreams – but if we keep taking a step forward and keep believing in ourselves more every day, we will make them happen.
It’s simple but I’ve found that it’s so true…and adorning myself in my sparkling colorful jewels every day gives me that boost of inspiration and energy I need to take that next step, which is what inspired me to share my jewels with others…so we can all have these rainbow talismans to help make our dreams come true!
What is your favourite scent?
Right now, it’s Astor Place by Bond No. 9…mainly because the bottle is so fun and colorful! Bond No. 9 makes these really great perfumes, each inspired by a neighborhood in NYC, and Astor Place in the East Village is one of my favorite places since there is so much inspiring street art near by and such a great artistic energy!
My dream travel trip is…
Somewhere colorful and warm with beautiful nature where I can relax…and a vibrant local nightlife so I can dance! Right now, Florianopolis in Brazil is at the top of my list!
An art I’d like to master is..
To play piano, guitar or sing…music makes me so happy and always lifts me up and I would love to be able to play and sing my favorite songs.
Three of my favourite places in NYC are…
5th Avenue, because when I walk by the Plaza and Bergdorfs, I feel like a tourist and remember how lucky I am to actually live in such a great city! The East Village, because it was the birthplace of punk and the home to so many amazing artists, and it still has such an eclectic, downtown vibe. My studio, because it’s where I can get lost in my colorful, sparkly, rainbow, glittery world and make all my dream jewelry designs come to life!
To view and purchase Camille’s one of a kind precious pieces, please take a look here: www.camillesflowers.com