This week’s Q & Africa will be featuring jewelry designer Enyonam. Enyonam is a vibrant individual who resides in Washington, DC. She is the creator and designer of Enyo Jewelry. Her background story is very rich and colorful, and she effectively channels that through her designs. Each piece is captivating and it is VERY tempting to buy them all! Enyonam doesn’t get carried away with all the flashy attributes that come with being a designer, she puts customer satisfaction first, remains original, and stays very humble. We’re glad that we got a chance to interview her; here’s what she had to say!
1. Why is your brand, product, or service important to consumer’s lives?
A lot of consumers look for standard products, large and famous brands, and repetitive behaviors because this simplifies their shopping experience. However, there are lots of consumers who are the EXACT opposite. These consumers are flexible about their style, adapt to new trends easily, and try to find niches within and outside of these trends. These people seek a personal experience with a brand, an exchange of interests, care, and a passion for same themes and products. This is why platforms such as Etsy are so successful – all of these producers and consumers are into handmade art, design and fashion, and want a unique customer experience. It is such consumers that actively look to express their unique styles by ‘discovering’ new, up-and-coming brands, and finding one-of-a-kind products, and wearing them proudly.
Enyo Jewelry aims to reach out to those consumers. With this brand, I have created a small niche of jewelry making that has been influenced by designs across the whole African continent. I use beads and pendants imported from many different countries, including Ghana, the Ivory Coast, Kenya and Ethiopia. Every bead, every necklace, and every pair of earrings has a unique story to tell.
2. How do you integrate culture, innovation, or sustainability within your company?
My main idea behind Enyo Jewelry is to promote different traditions, appreciate art from different places across West and East Africa, and to create new fusions with all of these cultures. I grew up in Germany, but my extended family comes from all over the continent [Africa], including Ghana, Guinea and Togo. Between travels, my family would always bring jewelry back for me; they became my favorite pieces to wear. Growing up between lots of different cultures has made me a very sensitive person when it comes to culture. It was these experiences and influences that gave me the motivation to start Enyo Jewelry.
In the longrun, I would like to create pieces that have gone through a sustainable product and value chain. I am producing jewelry with a dominant element of African design inspirations; all the beads and pendants originate from the African continent. My aim therefore is to find reliable local traders and producers of these beautiful products, and to be an ethical, sustainable producer of jewelry for those customers who value the origin of the products they buy as much as I do. There is a heavy demand for socially and environmentally conscious shopping; I believe that I can feed this market by becoming one of the main actors producing high quality and high value products originating from different places throughout Africa, this would be the fulfillment of my dream. I would also be helping small local producers and traders of beads and pendants.
3. Why are you so unique?
I am currently a one-woman-brand with the aim to expand. I have a background in international development; hence my focus remains heavily on expanding my business into a socially conscious enterprise. My primary focus is to build a business that entails a strong ethical component. To the contrary, I live for building and creating impact beyond my personal needs and wants. Educated in urban policy and development, I am highly interested in the liaison between building an innovative model of a social enterprise aimed at tackling urban poverty, having impact on, and improving lives of people in cities in the Global South, and appreciating the promotion of unique arts and traditions.
Also, I keep up to date with technology and the fast pace in which the internet is developing, because it is also a crucial factor to creating a social business with the intent of a long-lasting impact. Lastly, the profits of Enyo Jewelry will be used to help create a center for local craftsmanship in Accra or Dakar, so that more small-scale jewelry designers can find their way into the international market.
You can buy Enyo Jewelry’s bespoke beauties here: http://www.etsy.com/shop/EnyoJewelry?ref=ss_profile#
Follow Enyo Jewelry on Twitter: @EnyoJewelry