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Behind the Brand : Carly Waters Designs

Behind the Brand : Carly Waters Designs

Carly's love of stones and jewelry began at a young age. Some of her earliest influences were immediate family, her Great-Grandfather, a lapidarist, and her Grandmother, a jewelry collector.

December 3rd, 2018

Carly’s love of stones and jewelry began at a young age. Some of her earliest influences were immediate family, her Great-Grandfather, a lapidarist, and her Grandmother, a jewelry collector. From here the unlikely inception of CWD was born.

Her formative years in the small community of Big Sur encouraged her creative spirit. Mellow days were often consumed traipsing the near-by beaches, finding small treasures such as shells, jade, and abalone. Carly’s love of the ocean, stones, and travel are the main inspiration behind her work.

Here, she tells us more…

When did you launch the brand and what was the reason behind it?
I launched my eponymous brand in early 2017. Firstly, I have a family-reared passion for jewelry. My paternal Grandpa was a lapidarist, and my Grandma is obsessed with all types of jewelry and gemstones. She would show me her gems from exotic places and would, on occasion, gift me special pieces- this was the beginning of my infatuation. When it came to starting a venture- I wanted to fuse my artistry into whatever I was doing. With my line, you can expect playful cuts of unusual gemstones wrapped in delicate chain. There is a lot more to come in 2019 so stay tuned!!

What’s your background?
My family is in agriculture, farming here in the “Salad Bowl of the World” aka the Central Valley of California. I was raised in a small, artistic community on the coast known as Big Sur. We lived right on the beach and did not have electricity for a number of years. Many of the luminaries, artisans, and writers all flocked to this special place for solace and inspiration. Art was a part of my culture and upbringing. I later studied Psychology and worked in hospitality before launching Carly Waters Designs.

How many people are involved in the company and what are their roles?
Apart from some manufacturing and marketing tasks, it’s a one-woman show! I currently design the jewelry, produce, manage my social media, manage retail accounts, and write the journal posts. It’s a lot but at least being the perfectionist that I am I can make everything how I’d like it.

If you could start over with the business, would you do anything differently?
I would have defined my target niche better. I was focused mainly on the creative side of things.

What is the hardest challenge you have faced since you started the company?
I think the hardest challenge is just staying on top of everything. There is so much to do, constant correspondence, so it is a lot to have so many irons in the fire simultaneously.

Tell us one fact about you that people wouldn’t know?
I am one of six children (from the same parents)!

2019 is almost here, where do you plan on taking the brand?
For 2019, I am excited to engage in more creative and visual projects to further my brand. I have some exciting new collections that I plan to launch. I hope to further network, expose and market my product. I may do some trade shows as well.

To date, what has been the highlight since launching?
I think one of the most exciting things was being contacted and featured in Conde Nast publications in the UK- I was in Vanity Fair, Glamour and Vogue, among others. It is also very rewarding to see people wear and love my designs.

Which city do you feel most at home in, London, Paris or New York?
Well, I’m actually a California girl, so I would have to say with honesty none of those cities!

Three beauty products you can’t leave the house without?
My Epicuren moisturiser, my MAC eyelash curler, Dior universal brow styler, yep, that’s it!

Style means….?
Style means being able to attain a cohesive and enjoyable aesthetic and feel, in any facet of your life, whether it is your living space or your sartorial presentation. Style is being able to express your own sense of artistry and creativeness as it applies to every facet of tangible life. To me, life without style and distinction but would mundane!

Best thing about London to you?
It is just such a wonderful amalgam of different cultures and sophistication. I also have a thing for English accents, lol.

Statement shoe or statement bag?
I would have to go with a shoe. Nothing like a little pop of fun at the feet to add zest to an outfit.

If you had to, what piece of clothing from your wardrobe would you wear everyday?
My comfy Mother jeans

Favourite love song?
Con te Partido by Andrea Boticelli is nostalgic for me.

Best place for a coffee?
I don’t drink coffee, but do love drinking lavender tea right in my living room.

Most memorable piece of advice given to you?
Believe in yourself!! If you can’t how will anyone else!

Any quotes that you live by?
“I am going to make everything around me beautiful – that will be my life.” ― Elsie de Wolfe

“If you don’t build your dream someone will hire you to help build theirs.”― Tony Gaskins

Guilty pleasure?
Blowing off responsibilities for the beach.

If you could spent 24 hours in anywhere in the world, where would it be?
I would love to be back in the Seychelles.

In future, how do you plan on expanding the company?
I absolutely love expressing my artistry with jewelry, but I would love to expand my product base. Keep an eye out for specialty gifts and one-of-a-kind items!

Find out more…


@CarlyWatersDesigns (IG)(FB)(P)

Laura Bartlett

Laura Bartlett

Northern girl Laura is the epitome of a true entrepreneur. Laura’s spirit for adventure and passion for people blaze through House of Coco. She founded House of Coco in 2014 and has grown it in to an internationally recognised brand whilst having a lot of fun along the way. Travel is in her DNA and she is a true visionary and a global citizen.