Like the women she designs for, Samantha Wills is the ultimate bohemian goddess. Not only does the gorgeous designer have creativity radiating out of her, but the growing success of her jewellery business shows that this entrepreneur possesses brains as well as beauty. To celebrate the expanded launch of her bridal collection and the new launch of her Minerals and Personals collection, we caught up with the dynamic creative to talk all things jewellery, fashion and breaking the rules.
Your new collection Indigo Noir is an edgier style than what we have come to expect from you. Can you tell us how this grittier collection came about?
You are the first to notice that! I wanted to offer more than just bohemian statement pieces, and from the work I have been doing on the SW FINE collection, I guess some of that rubbed off into the mainline. I definitely used a lot more onyx than ever before. I just love the combination of onyx and something a little smaller (but still bigger than FINE) that you can wear everyday. I guess this is what produced the grittier pieces – which I like!
You balance your time between Australia and New York. What’s the best thing about living in two different countries and what are some of the challenges you face diving your time?
I am lucky that I get to escape the New York winter every two months or so and return to the beauty that is Sydney in the summer time!
However, it is definitely challenging personally to split your time between two countries. You feel like you miss all the important things in your personal life like friends’ birthdays. Obviously you don’t miss them all, but it often feels that way.
We are loving the re-launch of your bridal collection. Can you tell us what it means to you to play a part in a bride’s special day through your beautiful jewellery?
I didn’t realise how powerful it would be. It plays in the same element as when someone gifts their friend or relative SW for a milestone birthday or something incredibly special in their life.
I love having a bigger bridal offering – for weddings, but also for parties, soirees and red carpet events. This collection is just a little bit more refined in the metals and there is a whole heap of sparkle. The collection is designed for any event after dark.
Your work with Kelly Smith from Birdy & Me seems like the perfect collaboration between two talented creative. How did this partnership develop and can you tell us about the process you undertake when working with another creative to bring to life your vision and brand aesthetic?
Working with Kelly is a dream. Beyond being an incredible artist, Kelly is first and foremost just an awesome human! I was a long time fan of her work, so I started stalking her on twitter, and I guess we started chatting that way. Kelly has the ability to interpret what you need in a job however, it still has her signature. She is truly incredible and I love the long-term professional, creative relationship we have.
After starting off with bold, statement pieces, we love that you have worked delicate, fine jewellery into your range. Your latest collections Minerals and Personals both celebrate things that are close to your heart. What are some of your favourite pieces from the collection and how will you be working them into your wardrobe?
I wear a BEAUTIFUL MANTRA necklace every day and also a LOVE LETTER necklace (the triangle) in rose gold. Layered fine necklaces are perfect for everyday wear and we are also about to release a collection of FINE rings which, are also designed to be layered. I also appreciate mixing FINE & costume – something that a few years ago, you just wouldn’t do.
As someone who travels a lot, you must have discovered some amazing shopping destinations around the world. Can you share with us a few of your favourite hidden gems you’ve discovered?
I actually get asked this a lot – and I feel my answer is very disappointing!! As I do travel (for work) a lot, rarely do I have much down time for shopping. As a result I am a big online shopper as it is just so easy and convenient. I can try my selections on between midnight Skype calls and send back what doesn’t work.
You are just as well known for your luxe bohemian style as you are for your beautiful jewellery. Who are you go-to labels when you are off-duty and when you are on the red carpet?
For the Red Carpet, I love Steven Khalil & A’elkemi,, and while off duty I wear a lot of Rag & Bone, Sass & Bide and Elizabeth & James.
What fashion rule should every woman break?
Women should break all the rules. If you feel good in it, wear it! Fashion should be about how you feel, not what someone else thinks of you in it.
You have a huge following on social media. Why is it important for you to connect with your customers through this medium?
It is because of our followers that the brand is such a success. Without them, I would be a designer with big dreams… still sitting at my dining room table! I think it is a luxury to be able to connect so closely with your consumer, and they are gracious enough to tell me exactly what they like, don’t like & what they want to see in the future. That is invaluable information to me!
Handbags, interiors, wedding favours, your brand just keeps growing! What exciting new things can we expect from Samantha Wills in the coming months?
There is a new division launching in November. While I cannot announce it just yet, I can say that it is the perfect addition to our accessories portfolio!
You shop the latest Samantha Wills collection at selected stockists and online.