We had the good fortune of connecting with Andrea Reed and we’ve shared our conversation below.
Hi Andrea, what was your thought process behind starting your own business?
I was honestly scared to death, but then I asked myself, “well, what if?” and weighted the pros and cons. At the time, while wrestling with my thoughts, I had a horrible boss that stifled all of our ideas and also refused to promote us, but I couldn’t quit because I was literally a starving artists. So to regain some sort of creative freedom, I began taking jewelry making courses, which became a freedom I didn’t know I needed. So long story short, the need for a creative outlet and proving to myself that I am capable running a business fueled my fire to start my own.
Can you open up a bit about your work and career? We’re big fans and we’d love for our community to learn more about your work.
Up to about three years ago, I spent roughly two decades as a display artists at prominent department stores along 5th Ave in NYC. Having that background has taught to have an eye for detail and design. Some elements of display design I’ve learned along the way are incorporated into the way I make jewelry. I am happy I still create all pieces by hand. I think there is something special in knowing your jewelry was made with love and care by the designer themselves.
The road wasn’t easy to getting where I am today, but pray, family will-power and girl-power pulled me through.
Three main lessons:
All money isn’t good money, meaning, protect your brand!!!
Every experience is a learning experience.
Don’t be easily swayed, go with your gut.
A New Day, A New Dawn NYC is a Bronx, NY based jewelry company that uses fair-trade African beads and fabrics, gemstones and natural materials to create amazing pieces of wearable art. My family means the world to me, so I incorporated them in the brand by naming collections after them. Mary Dots are named after my mother, Taliferro and Parham Pins and Cufflinks are in homage to my dapper father and grandfathers. Leona’s Cabochons, Inez Loops and Jessie Hoops are named after my stylish grandmothers. Bea’s Chokers, Monet and Rone Bracelets are names after my sisters and brother. Jediah’s Oddities are my namesake. Bi-seasonally I create completely new collections, this season we played with a lot colors, so it’s named Kaleidoscope.
If you had a friend visiting you, what are some of the local spots you’d want to take them around to?
I’m a foodie so… First stop is literally Rascoe’s Chicken & Waffles, ( I know very tourist-y). Sorry not sorry. Then to Manhattan Beach to hopefully get in on a volleyball game and watch the sunset. Also, bike riding along the Pacific and hiking in Runyon and Grffith Parks. The Art District is amazing and I will definitely take them to the Hammer Museum, LACMA and MOCA. And of course, Rodeo Dr., just to feel fabulous for a second. For food Swinging Door BBQ, Neptune’s Net, Moodaepo Korean BBQ, Blu Jam Cafe, Gjelina and a host of food trucks.
Shoutout is all about shouting out others who you feel deserve additional recognition and exposure. Who would you like to shoutout?
God Definitely Mom
Harlem Park to Park
Start Small Think Big
Special shoutout to all the women entrepreneurs, I’ve crossed paths with. In the very very busy world, I have yet to meet a woman-owned business inwhich we didn’t lift each other up and try to help each other as much as possible. That’s amazing to me! I am humbled and thankful for that because I’ve heard some horror stories.