Photo via Creators of Desire
Have you checked out Fashionology yet? It’s one of our favorite jewelry brands around the office. Most days, you can find our buyer Emily sporting the shark tooth necklace, our photo editor Ashley wearing the clear quartz necklace, or myself donning the bird skull necklace – just to name a few instances :). Needless to say, this is definitely a brand that we stock up on for Karmaloop as well as for our own closets. Created by Rachel Duister in 2009, each piece from the brand is versatile and convenient for everyday wear. The pieces can easily be dressed up or down, due to their streamlined and elegent designs. Over the past four years, the brand has grown from its Netherland roots and become an international resource for beautiful jewelry. We spoke with Duister about how she started Fashionology, what inspires her designs, and what we can expect from her and Fashionology in the future.
Name: Rachel Duister
Hometown: Rotterdam, The Netherlands, Europe.
How did you come get started with Fashionology?
I started a fashion blog 6 years ago because of my interest in fashion, jewelry and art. The blog was named Fashionology and became quite popular overtime. Back then, there weren’t as many fashion blogs as there are right now. I simply posted everything about my (fashion/art) life online. After 2 years, I started crafting my own jewelry and showed them on my blog, and I noticed people liked them so I started selling pieces. Not long after, the jewelry was spotted by stylists and bloggers, which increased the demand. I eventually started my own brand with an online shop on www.fashionology.nl, which was previously my blog’s url. At first we mainly had Scandinavian customers, then came the French and now we have customers from all around the world.
Where do you often look for your design inspiration? How has travelling inspired your work?
My main inspiration comes from travelling. I love to travel and visit cities. I’m a real city person. Inspiring cities such as London, Ibiza, Paris, Barcelona, Berlin, Stockholm, Amsterdam, Milan and Copenhagen are all less then two hours flying from where I live, so booking a short trip when I have some time off is super easy. When I have the time, I travel to the USA. I love Europe, but the US fascinates me the most, I try to be there at least a few weeks a year. When I travel I visit markets, museums, vintage shops and watch people. I observe nature and cultures and I’m obsessed with symbols, spirituality and meanings of all sorts of objects. Street-style and bloggers give me tons of inspiration too. Also industrial design, the Golden age, art deco and modernism.
How did art school affect your work?
Quite some! I learned so much about art and different cultures. Philosophy and sociology were also a big part of my study, as well as economics and politics. Art gave me inspiration, economics helped me to be ‘business-like’
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Your bio says you were self-taught: what were some challenges you faced creating a jewelry brand on your own?
I was always really creative and a hard worker from a young age. When I started Fashionology I had (and still have) to work hard, I worked from my apartment for over 60 hours a week for two years. I needed more space to work more efficiently and we got an amazing office in Rotterdam with a few interns and one employee. This really helped and we created structure and balance which brought Fashionology to the next level. At the beginning, I did everything myself, from designing, photographing and styling, to marketing, sales, PR, customer service and sending out orders …really everything that comes along in creating a brand. Starting a business in an economic crisis is tough, but you learn to be creative in doing business. I also focus on naturally growing and establishing solid partnerships with select retailers. I have been careful to not grow too quickly and ensure that my jewelry is always of great quality. Fashionology has been fortunate to have a solid blogger clientele which has really given the brand a lot of exposure.
Who is the Fashionology girl?
An independent girl with an eye for fashion, who can be bohemian, but also rock and roll, dark, yet classy and cool.
The collection is eclectic so I think women of all ages can wear Fashionology with pieces suitable for every occasion. My friends all wear it so differently. It’s great to see Fashionology pieces individualized!
Who were you the most excited to see wearing your designs?
Bloggers and seeing the jewelry worn by people on the streets. Fashionology also got featured on the X-Factor and The Voice and we had a few great magazine interviews with magazines as ELLE and Marie Claire.
When you’re not working on Fashionology where can you be found?
At home watching True Blood or Game of Thrones, I looooove those series! Out shopping – I live the center of Rotterdam, when I walk out my front door I’m in the middle of the shopping area. In museums, especially modern museums. Department stores.
Photo via Come over to the Dark Side
What’s your go-to Fashionology piece?
I’m always wearing a small ring on my index and an above knuckle ring. The Bird Skull Necklace, a Casing Necklace or a Shark Tooth Necklace and Hoop earrings with some earpins.
How would you describe your personal style?
I think its timeless with a bohemian vibe and a dark edge.
Finish this sentence: I never leave the house without.. All stars, rings, my Chanel bag, sunglasses and mascara.
What can we expect to see from you and/or from Fashionology in the future?
We have just launched Nolomagazine.com and we’re setting up a new category at www.fashionology.nl called OBJECTS where we will sell found objects which can be related to our jewelry, such as vintage furniture, rugs and skulls. In the future, we’ll also have accessories and hopefully even clothes!