Aklia Chinn’s Turning Passion into Profit

I recently read this article in Black Enterprise news by Janel Hazelwood about a jewelry desinger named Aklia Chinn and her path to success in a jewelry designing. It is quite interesting how we can turn what most consider a hobby into a lucrative career and Aklia’s story is the most interesting.

 Of course, there are a lot of factors to consider in terms of quality, need for your product, uniqueness, product placement and of course your NETWORK before decided to turn your hobby into a career. However,  Aklia’s success started with the interest of one person on the set of a popular show and then took off from there. Word of mouth can be the best marketing tool, therefore you must be kind to everyone you encounter because you never know who may be watching or mentioning your product to someone else. Aklia is very humbled by her success and is considered a veteran in the game. Her jewelry can best be described as afro-centric and rich in culture. 

When asked about how she was able to secure celebrity clients, she stated:  “When recognizable celebrities love your work enough to wear it often, people notice, and that publicity is priceless.” She also talks about her pitfalls and challeges within the non essential items, gifts and jewelry business and how the economy has effected her business. Aklia does not only own a retail jewelry gift shop but has turned her store into a roots salon called Rehab Salon. Check out the article:http://www.blackenterprise.com/2011/10/19/a-veteran-in-custom-jewelry/

Aklia Rehab Salon: http://www.rehabsalon.com/1301.html 

Aklia Jewelry Site: http://www.aklias.com/


Yaya’s Haus of Glam “YHG Jewels” Premier event review

Thank you all for showing your love and support at Yaya’s Haus of Glam “YHG Jewels” premier event. The JewelSpa party was a success and I hope you enjoyed your purchases. For those who could not attend, thank you for your well wishes and please stay tuned for future events..The website launch will be in November and you can find details here or on facebook at http://www.facebook.com/pages/Yayas-Haus-of-Glam-YHG-Jewels/193581330705434.

Yaya’s Haus of Glam Premier Event

I will be hosting a Jewelry Spa party on August 20th from 12PM-4PM at Mint Restaurant & Lounge in Garden City, New York. Please come and enjoy the premier event for my jewelry line Yaya’s Haus of Glam “YHG Jewels”. The jewelry items will also be displayed for your perusal and purchase and the spa treatment will be provided by Leslie’s nail spa. She accepts cash only and the mani pedi’s range from $15-$25. Her services include regular, shatter, and shallac designs.

Can’t wait to see you all there for this end of summer “JewelSparty” fling!!


M.C.L. Matthew Campbell Laurenza Jewelry Haven

M.C.L Designs are unique filled with colorful gemstones and jewels. Not one single piece of his line is “dull” he is not afraid of taking risks with his designs and all can be worn individually or as a collection of pieces. He has worked with the likes of The Henri Bendel and Vivre. His line is carried in Bergdorf Goodman, Neiman Marcus, and Saks Fifth Avenue. Featured in magazine and articles in the UK, Singapore and USA. You can find his work in Elle, InStyle, Grazia, and Amica. Please see the website and photos for some of his work.


Grace Ormonde Unique Bracelets

While perusing the Grace Ormonde Wedding style gallery I came across these two uniques bracelets from a designer featured in their wedding style shopping gallery. The desinger Shelly Swed K. has some very unique pieces encompassing special stones, 14K and 18K gold. She prides her line on being truly custom to the client be it a bride or regular consumer. No two pieces are alike which you will see in the link below. However you may have to break the piggy bank for some of these unique styles.





 All Images from Grace Ormonde

Bridal Glam

As a past bride myself, I realized how hard it was to find the jewelry piece I wanted for my “big day.” My bridesmaids, mother, and godmother searched high and low for the right piece for me. We had to eventually go out of the US to locate the perfect ensemble in Argentina. We found a lady who custom designs these types of high fashion jewelry for various beauty pageants and local weddings in Buenos Aires. Her pieces are literally breathtaking and the quality…the quality I repeat was to die for. In the future, I will feature pieces like this and more in my “Bridal Glam” line.



Photographs taken by YaYa

Caribbean Jewelry designer


 RÊVE Jewellery & Accessories® is a couture line of custom design pieces founded in Kingston, Jamaica by brother and sister Duane and Teasea Bennett. Their pieces are very bold and unique bringing a costume jewelry effect to fine jewelry pieces. You will find their collections on most of the who’s who in Jamaica and globally. Artists such as Kelly Rowland, Cherine Anderson, Tessane Chin, as well as Miss Jamaica Universe Yendi Phillips are adorned by their Jewelry pieces. My Favorite of the collections are the Glistening Waters Couture, Ali, Birds nest (Their signature line), and the Ackee bloom made of the mother of pearl.

Ali Collection

Reve Jewellery Couture

Check out their website and be sure to sign up for their newsletter: http://www.revejewellery.com/

Photographs taken by RÊVE Jewellery & Accessories®

The Inspiration

Photograph taken from Rena Klingenburg’s hubpage

I had to share Rena Klingenburg’s hubpage on my blog as her points and to do’s in the jewelry business has truly helped to kick start YHG Jewels. Her insights and shared experiences within the jewelry business are literally priceless. http://hubpages.com/hub/How-to-Start-a-Jewelry-Business

In addition this woman below is doing her thing in the business and also shares her insights on “Launching Your Own Jewelry Line”. Which has also inspired YHG Jewels.

Getting Started: Launching Your Own Jewelry Line

Allyson Leak struck gold when her jewelry adorned celebs like Alicia Keys. Here, the young designer talks shop about her craft.

Photograph taken from BlackEnterprise and Ally Marie Couture
by Arlice Nichole Posted on BlackEnterprise Website: February 22, 2011

As Fashion Week heads from New York to Europe, designers continue to show off their looks for the seasons ahead in hopes of garnering the attention of buyers and celebs alike, and keep their fingers crossed that their designs will show up on a red carpet or TV sets near you. For some, like Allyson Leak, such success comes “naturally.” The 28-year-old former journalist is jewelry designer and founder of Ally Marie Couture, a line of earthy-yet-glam handmade pieces of materials like bamboo, mother-of-pearl, turquoise and Swarovski crystal, that Leak calls “wearable art.” In 2007, just two weeks after Leak finished designing the first collection for her newly launched line, superstar Alicia Keys wore one of her necklaces during an appearance on MTV Hits. Since then, celebrities fans have included singer Estelle and actress Lisa Arrindell Anderson, and Leak, who has been crafting jewelry since she was eight, hasn’t looked back.

BlackEnterprise.com caught up with Leak and spoke with the young entrepreneur about the business of launching your own accessories line and what she has in store for spring.

Black Enterprise: Where does your interest in designing jewelry come from?

Allyson: I guess my passion is a fusion of my love for sparkly things, being creative and accessorizing. I love designing necklaces that can be worn more than one way. My Chrystal Chandelier Necklace, that’s made of Swarovski crystals and glass, can be worn to a black tie event or with a tank top, skinny jeans, and a gorgeous pair of shoes.

When exactly did you know you wanted to get into the jewelry making business?

I knew for certain a few years ago. I made my first pair of earrings at age seven and it’s so interesting how things come full circle.

What were your founding principles for Ally Marie Couture?

My founding principles were to create jewelry that is unique and versatile.  My jewelry pieces are one of a kind, and my objective is to create timeless pieces and to always offer the best customer service regardless if someone is spending $5or $500.

Your jewelry has been worn by R&B singers like Alicia Keys and Estelle. What are some of your other triumphs?
I had the opportunity to be a jewelry gift bag sponsor for VH1′s Fashion Rocks award show, which was held in New York.  Also, last summer, I designed signature necklaces for the Ace of Spades Champagne.  I am so blessed and thankful to have had such wonderful celebrities wear my jewels.

What have been your challenges in general, and in getting your work to market?
The challenges have and still are that I am a one-woman show. When you work as a team of one, you can only get so much done in a day.  However, I recently started splitting my daily tasks into 20 minute intervals.  This allows me time to multi-task and so far, it’s working great.

What power moves do you make to get your designs exposure?
The first thing I do is envision my line and set a goal to have it completed within a certain time frame.  Next, I utilize my relationships and reach out to others for feedback on my ideas.  During my design phase, I again reach out and this time, I am just fearless in my efforts to get exposure and visibility.  Don’t get me wrong, sometimes my efforts are ignored.  However, I guess my real power moves are my perseverance and positive outlook.

How heavy have relationships weighed in getting your designs visibility?
The key to building your brand is to be nice, professional and someone who stands by her work.  Some of my visibility has resulted through personal relationships or because I knew someone who knew someone.  However, there has been many times where I’ve reached out to editors or stylists that I don’t know to gain exposure.  Either way, I’ve found that people will help you if they believe that you are sincere and [they] like your product, even if they don’t know you.

Ally Marie Love Blossom Necklace

Photograph taken from BlackEnterprise and Ally Marie Couture

Where does your design inspiration come from?
My inspiration comes from a broad perspective.  I adore nature and I think the elements inspire my colors and design shapes.  I love pretty looking things that are shiny (Laughs).  I am usually drawn to flowers, crystals, precious stones, chains etc.  Honestly, at a bead store, I walk around slowly examining every possible single bead, going over bead combinations in my head, and cannot wait to get home and start my next jewelry piece.

What makes Ally Marie Couture different?
My jewelry is timeless and not trendy. My couture jewelry pieces are all handmade, by me, with lots of love and each piece can be worn dressed up or dressed down.

Tell us about your new spring collection.
I refer to all of my new pieces as my kids (laughs), and my spring collection is called “Behold a Lady.”  I wanted to design pieces that made women feel feminine, modern, and stylish.  I chose vintage items, buttons, crochet fabrics, purse handles, and flowers to create my line.

In your opinion, what advice can creative professionals benefit from?
My advice to all creative professionals is to stay positive.  You may even want to have a positive mantra (repeated often to remind you to keep going).  Don’t be a know it all.  Get a mentor, take a class, and share ideas with people already in your field.  The key is to learn and grow.  I often think that if you let your ego get away from you, your business plan will suffer.  Designers need to learn about the business side as well as being creative.  Although you may have an amazing line, you need to know how to do proper public relations and how to market yourself.

What is your personal success mantra?
Let’s see…I guess I would have to say “The good and the bad are all a part of a balanced plan for you to learn and grow. Try and make the best out of every part of your journey to be successful.”

View the entire collection at www.AllyMarie.com.


Hello Jewelry Fashionistas!

Welcome to Yaya’s Haus of Glam “YHG” Jewels wordpress blog site. This site was created to connect YHG Jewels to the world of consumers and more specifically jewelry fashionistas. Through this blog site you will see the growth of YHG Jewels while being able to provide your opinions on various jewelry pieces. We will also showcase other pieces from various jewelry artists that speaks to our mission, “Fashion Jewelry Meets Art.” Come with us on this journey as we assemble our artistically inclined high fashion jewelry designs.