Really digging these “Designer Profiles” and the incredible people I get connected to/meet! Met and interviewed the incredible Haley Solar of Junim this morning and have a couple other interviews and profiles in the works! If there are any questions you’d like to ask a designer, please let me know!
Second “Designer Profile/Your Story” feature is on the fabulous ladies of
Since they’re located in Santa Barbara, I wasn’t able to meet up with the ladies for an interview but they gladly answered the questions I had for them!
Taken from their “About Me” page:
“Dodds and Boshae Designs came to life in 2013 when friends and business partners Stacey Dodds Rydell and Anna ‘Boshae’ Cardnenas decided to turn their hobby and passion for jewelry making in to their career.”
Stacey on the left and Anna on the right
Tell me a little about yourself. Where did you grow up and go to school? Growing up were you passionate about fashion and jewelry?
S: I was born and raised in Santa Ynez. Growing up I was very passionate about dance, but in my spare time you would most likely find me getting my hands into fashion/makeup/hair/crafting & especially jewelry making. I had a minor obsession with rocks, shells, beading & just found my child hood collections! Recently my sister mentioned that the only nice jewelry she has is from gifts that I have given her throughout the years. So even before I seriously got in to making jewels, I had a very strong attraction towards them!
A: I had zero fashion sense as a child. I was very much a tom boy trying to keep up with my two brothers. Looking back at photos is a sad sad site haha! I’d say I started developing my sense of style in high school – I always wanted to be different and stayed away from the “popular” brands. I loved bright colors and styling outfits that were unique. I loved wearing my grandma’s jewelry and decking myself out playing dress up around the house!
I grew up in a very small rural town named Clarksburg (population under 1500) about 30 minutes outside of Sacramento. Growing up in the country really shaped who I am today and made me passionate about nature, relationships, and creative expression. I attended a performing arts high school in Sacramento and then made my way down south to attend UCSB and haven’t been able to leave Santa Barbara since.
What did you want to be as a little kid?
A: Depending on what age I was when you asked this question you would have gotten one of the following responses:
1. I wanted to be a veterinarian – I love animals and was always connected to my dogs and cats in a way that made them more like friends than pets.
2. A singer – I grew up singing in the church choir, then in high school started performing in musicals, taking private voices lessons, and performed as much as possible. I was even a music major at UCSB for my freshman year.
3. A dancer – I didn’t start dancing until around age 13 but had a natural talent that allowed me to progress almost instantly. I wanted to perform on cruise ships and go on tours around the world!
S: I always thought I would be a professional dancer…specifically a music video girl 😉 I lived in front of the TV as a child putting Britney Spears & Destiny’s Child music videos in slow-mo so I could learn every single move…oh the good ol’ days!
I read that you guys began meeting for weekly craft nights. Was this just the two of you, was it a program you met through or what?
S: We just met either at my house or Anna’s house to do fun DIY projects with our small group of core girlfriends. We quickly learned that we were both had an intense passion for these types of things, & before you knew it, it was just Anna & I getting together on the reg & once we started dabbling in jewelry making together there was literally NO stopping us.
Did you find that your styles and aesthetic for jewelry meshed at the time or were you both working with completely different mediums/styles?
A: We mesh pretty well if I do say so myself. We both have our strengths and they compliment each other nicely. We bounce design ideas of one another as well as design on our own. We have a great relationship in that we can constructively critique each others work to make each piece the best it can be.
S: Our styles mesh so well. We both love learning new mediums/styles and teaching each other new tricks & tips. Anna does all of our leather/studded work at this point in time, and I really want her to teach me soon!!!
Is there anyone who has helped you along with the process?
S: My family has been a HUGE support throughout this whole process. They help me out so much that I honestly don’t think we could do it without them. My sisters love being involved with the design process, photo shoots etc and we love having their creative eye. My Mom helped us out a little bit financially in the beginning when we were starting from ground zero, to build up our supply inventory, but we also spent a lot of our personal money as well. Now her & my Dad are our biggest fans! Anna’s boyfriend Max has been a great help. He is our business guy, so we meet with him regularly to make sure we are staying on point with our financials & projects that will help us to grow.
A: I would say my mom has helped me the most. She gave me the foundation of being artistically inclined. Growing up she always had a craft or project we would be working on. It made me love working with my hands and comfortable being creative. Also, my boyfriend Max has been a huge help in the process of building our business. He has given me the confidence and tools to know we can do this!!
What was the first piece of jewelry you ever made? Have your designs evolved?
A: My jewelry making days began with friendship bracelets and lanyards. Classic!! But I was good at them 🙂 When Stacey and I first started making jewelry together we really had no idea what we were doing. We taught ourselves by watching videos online and trial and error. There are so many great tutorials out there that it made learning easy! Our designs are now much more complex and the materials we use now are of quality. We started out using a lot of cheaper materials and the quality was noticeably not there, pieces would break, and the finishing touches just weren’t there.
S: I remember wire wrapping my first simple necklace together (with crappy wire), & becoming immediately in love with this form of jewelry making. They have definitely evolved quite a bit. I can always tell when I see a friend wearing an OG piece from the early days of D&B because my craftsmanship was no where near the level it is now!
When did your shop officially open? I saw that some of your pieces are being sold at The Tangerine Salon, Cold Heaven Cellars and Lola Boutique — can you talk about what it was like to get your pieces into a store and that process.
S: We opened out Etsy shop in May of 2013 (HAPPY ANNIVERSARY LADIES!). Last fall we launched our own website. Our first wholesale account was The Tangerine Salon, & we literally had no idea what we were doing. Soon after putting our jewels up in Tangerine, the owner/wine maker at Cold Heaven was in the salon and saw our jewels and reached out to see if we would be interested in collaborating. Everything else has just seemed to flow from there. We are still working out the kinks in this whole process, but we are getting there slowly but surely!
How long does it usually take to construct pieces?
Every piece is so different…some simple earrings take only 5 minutes! While a very intricate necklace such as the Love Stone takes almost an hour, due to the hand wire wrapped beaded chain.
Where are your favorite places to shop?
A: Some of my favorites in Santa Barbara are Chapala and Parker, Francesca’s, and Channel Islands Surf Shop. I also love shopping while on the road. Finding special pieces on a weekend getaway ties a memory to that trip and every time I wear that piece it will remind me
Where do you source inspiration from?
S: Everywhere!!! I am literally always feeling inspired by other people’s jewelry I come across on the regular basis, as well as pinterest & etsy!
A: Nature and quiet moments. I love being outside and in Santa Barbara there are very few days a year that keep you indoors. Hiking and camping are two of my favorite past times. I find that when I am outdoors surrounded by beauty and take the time to stop and relax I often have my most creative ideas.
Who are/what are your favorite designers/musicians/artist/pieces of artwork? (Living or non-living – in terms of designers, artists or musicians.. not artwork, haha)
S: My #1 girl Beyonce! No one else will ever live up to her 😉 The sisters at Spell continue to inspire me daily http://www.spelldesigns.com/
Jasmine Meakin, an amazing Australian choreographer. One day I hope to take a class from her!
How would you describe your style? How does living in California influence your design style and aesthetic?
A: My style is very classic and comfortable with a little spice of Boshae flare. I adopted the philosophy years ago that if it’s not comfortable – don’t wear it. When I am comfortable in my clothes and LOVE the pieces I have on I feel better. It’s silly to say but there really is an extra boost of confidence when you aren’t worrying about your aching feet, tight jeans, etc. I tend to gravitate towards neutral colors for day to day wear that way you can accessorize to enhance the look. But I also love having statement pieces that are bold and bright and really grab your eye! Balancing those two is key!
How would you describe your line of jewelry?
S: Classic dainty 14k gold filled pieces, using gemstones, wire wrapping & bead work. Every day pieces that transition easily from day to night. Very simple to stack pieces together & to mix and match!
What are your favorite materials to work with?
A: I love working with leather, wire, and elastic – pretty much all of our mediums! I really want to take D&B to the next level and learn soldering techniques, once we master that our creative opportunities will be endless and that is exciting!
S: I love wire wrapping gemstones 😀
How do you balance jewelry making/shop owning with everyday life?
S: Wow. That is a really hard one! I do feel like I am always working. Sometimes I just have to force myself to stop thinking about jewels & jewelry making…but I can’t help it, it is just so fun!!!
A: Balancing our shop with everyday life is difficult. I work full time for another jewelry design company manufacturing products all day then come home from work and make jewelry for Dodds and Boshae. I eat breath sleep jewelry! But I love it, if I didn’t I wouldn’t be doing it. I’m so motivated to grow Dodds and Boshae that I get excited to come home everyday and work on our projects.
What is the most difficult thing with owning a shop and jewelry design?
A: Since Stacey and I both have day jobs the toughest thing about owning our own shop is not having enough time to do all of the things we want for D&B. We have so many ideas and running a business really takes A LOT of time. We have to prioritize our tasks and can’t always see all of our ideas to fruition. As we continue to grow we hope to gradually cut back on our day jobs until we can eventually be working full time for Dodds and Boshae.
S: Probably transitioning from work to personal life. It can also be hard to hear all the ideas everyone else has for D & B, because there are already so many ideas of our own floating around that often times I feel overwhelmed with things I would like to do with our company! Don’t get me wrong…this is not a bad thing. Just a little difficult!
What is the most rewarding thing?
A: Seeing Dodds and Boshae on a stranger! A lot of our friends and family rock Dodds and Boshae religiously, but there’s nothing better than seeing someone walking down the street wearing our jewels!
What are some of your goals?
S: My main goal is to grow D & B enough so Anna & I can have this be our full time careers 🙂
A: To be working full time for myself would be the greatest accomplishment and strive to get there everyday. Baby steps.
To see more of the Dodds and Boshae brand visit http://doddsandboshae.com/