Fresh off her recent trunk show with Stanley Korshak's boutique, The Shak, we talked to local design star Amber Venz about her eponymous label, Spring style choices, and recent reality television exposure.
What inspired you to make the move from designing apparel to creating jewelry?
"I have always designed clothing for myself and recently started doing custom, handmade dresses for clients. As far as creating jewelry, that started when I was in 9th grade and found a pair of earrings at Studio Sebastian that I wanted but couldn't afford. My neighbor gave my mom and me a set of jewelry tools, and we started creating. That year, I donated my time and creations to the Crisis Pregnancy Center to raise money at their spring sale in Dallas, and local women began calling me to make them jewelry! Then, girls from school would drop their homecoming dresses by my house so I could make them a necklace or earrings to match. When I began working at Studio Sebastian (which also sold Venz's first clothing collection, Amber Elise) while in college at SMU, I used the money I earned from the jewelry to pay off the bags and shoes I purchased from the store! Finally, during my senior year, my boyfriend suggested I brand my product and invest in an e-commerce site, and when that worked out, I was able to leave my full-time buying position at the store to focus on the jewelry line."
What served as your 'muse' for the Spring collection?
"I am inspired more by my materials than by people. I know that approach sounds strange but when I look at a chain, I see a necklace. I know what pieces need to be added and how long the necklace should be -- I have been blessed with vision."
What pieces did your clients respond to most strongly during your recent trunk show?
"This has been my best season yet when it comes to consumer response. For the first time I had customers buying harnesses off the hangers, and these usually take a demonstration and outfit suggestion! Men bought multiple rings for their wives, and many of the women bought earrings and layering pieces for themselves. I don't know if they are more familiar with my personal style or have a better understanding of my brand but people really got it."
What's next for the label?
"My jewelry line is just one facet of my brand. We just celebrated the first anniversary of my blog, VENZedits, and BRAVO was there to film the event! I have been styling a character on new show, Most Eligible: Dallas, and they have been capturing that aspect of my work. After creating a dress for a client and character on the show, Courtney Kerr, I have been fielding orders on that piece and other special order work. Look for my pieces on the show when it premieres in August!"
Who would be your 'dream' client to design for?
"My dream client would be Kate Bosworth. I would like to think that my style closely aligns with hers and I admire the image that she portrays. She is always on the edge of fashion but never extreme, never too trendy, always a lady with a modern girl grace."