Hello Queen!!! Thank you so much for your time and attention today, in conducting this interview! – First, please tell us about your life in your younger years. What was your childhood like?
I grew up in a broken home. My parents were reaching the end of their marriage and my siblings and I endured a lot of trauma that stemmed from it. In 2001 we left Baltimore, Maryland and my mother moved us to Sacramento, California for a fresh start.
The verbal and domestic abuse my mother encountered from my father caused her to develop both health and mental issues which made it very difficult for her to create a stable household for me and my siblings. Seeing the struggles my mother dealt with as a single mom of three pushed me to want a better life for my future self. Everything I experienced in my childhood shaped me as a person and has helped me to develop the structure, strength and resilience that I apply to my business today.
We’re you always into jewelry or entrepreneurship? – When did you decide to get into the jewelry business?
I never in a million years pictured myself becoming a jeweler. I had a period in my life where I had financial hardships and began to pray for financial freedom and a business idea that would change my quality of life.
One night I had gone to bed after praying my normal prayer to better my situation and I had a dream that I was a celebrity jeweler living in Atlanta Georgia. Prior to this dream, I had no knowledge or experience in my industry but began to do my research on it.
On April 7th 2020 I was laid off from my 9-5 job due to Covid and had no where to turn. I had no savings account and the only thing that came to mind was launching my jewelry business that I had been researching in the weeks prior.
3 weeks later on May 1st 2020 I took a leap of faith and launched Z Jewelers with only a few hundred dollars to my name and eventually made enough money to move to Atlanta where I met and worked with my first of many celebrity clients.
What were some of your initial challenges when getting started and how did you overcome them?
Some of my initial challenges came from being taken advantage of by suppliers who knew I was inexperienced and new to this industry. It wasn’t until I decided to fully educate myself through the GIA(Gemological Institute of America) that I was able to gain full knowledge and understanding of the market.
The knowledge and experience that I have gained over time has helped me to develop a strong team and great business partnerships.
Please tell us about Z Jewelers! How did the brand come about and what can consumers expect from the company in general?
Z Jewelers is a brand built on faith, consistency and hard work. Consumers can expect a very personalized and stress free shopping experience. My team and I make it our priority to cater to the needs of each individual client in order to bring their vision to life and create a memorable experience.
We see that you also do teeth and grills! Tell us a little bit about those services and what the process is like for custom work there!
Making custom grillz is easily the most exciting part of my day to day routine. Each client is provided with a free consultation to discuss their vision and ideas. Next we create a 3D design to show them a digital model of exactly what their custom teeth will look like. Lastly, we begin production and finish off by adding the final touches, polishing and checking for any imperfections.
We’ve maintained a high satisfaction rate and enjoy being able to experience our clients reactions when they see the finished product.
What is something that sets Z Jewelers apart from the rest? And are there any “jewelry myths” that you can clear up for us here?
One major thing that sets Z Jewelers apart from the rest is that we focus more on building long term trust and satisfaction with our clients as opposed to doing business just for the money. We make it our priority to make each client feel special, comfortable and quoted fairly when conducting business with our jewelers.
As far as a jewelry myth, many people believe that gold naturally comes in three primary colors (white, yellow and rose). However, gold is primarily yellow but can become white or rose by adding certain metals to change the color.
What are some of the trending jewelry styles for summer and fall of 2023?
The trend for this summer and fall will definitely be layered diamond tennis chains and stacked bracelets from brands such as Van cleef & Arpels and Cartier. These styles are timeless, sleek and very versatile.
How has your experience been as a WOC in your industry? Is there any advice you can give to the next WOC looking to stretch their wings in this arena?
Being a WOC in my industry has been both challenging and rewarding. I’ve dealt with a lot of prejudice within the industry but used my frustration as fuel to keep going and striving for the top. The amount of love and support that I get from people all over the world encourages me to never give up. I’ve met so many men, women and children who are inspired by my journey and want to become jewelers after seeing that it’s possible for people of color.
Have you had any mentors or resources of inspiration along your journey? If so please share!
I am very inspired by celebrity jeweler Johnny Dang. His story of starting from the bottom and becoming a household name really reminds me that the underdog always comes out on top! He started really small and kept pushing himself until he got his big break and is now servicing celebrity clients all around the world. This is a big goal of mine and I plan to keep applying myself daily until I accomplish it.
What’s next for Z Jewelers and how can our readers shop, or keep in touch with your team and company announcements?
This year I’m focused on manifesting my dreams and working towards building my jewelry empire! I’ve received so many amazing opportunities thus far and look forward to hosting a jewelry pop up shop in every major city. Readers can connect with me on social media @zjewelers or can shop my products on shopzjewelers.com.