A few months ago, I found out a fellow Her Campus Blogger Network member named Amna Ali started her own boutique online. Amna is a Chicago-based blogger, engineer, fashionista, and jewelry designer. Her boutique, called The Amna Ali Boutique, sells gorgeous handmade bracelets in fun vibrant colors.
I asked her if she wanted to be featured on my blog and she not only agreed, but she also decided to send me a bracelet set and name it after my blog!
The set is called “Whisper Box Bella,” and you can get it here. Keep reading for the interview I did with Amna!
Me: Why did you decide to start a collection?
Amna Ali: Ever since I can remember, I always have had a love for designing. Whether it’s designing my room, my own website, logos, my graduation card… I just love designing it! I honestly could say I have an eye for these things. I love playing with colors and putting things together. If I don’t like the color combination, I’ll start all over again from scratch. Even though I took the route to be a software engineer in life, I secretly have always wanted to be the next top designer! Every child has a dream. They want to be a super star, an actress, a model…it sounds crazy when we say it as we get older, but I never believed it was impossible. When I was overweight and over 200 pounds, I thought it was impossible to ever lose it, and drop 65 pounds, but I did it. I had a goal, I wanted it so badly, and I didn’t stop working towards it until I reached my goal. Even when I reached it, I set myself higher goals. I never gave up. Now, when it comes to my outfit and the accessories I wear with it is what truly shows off my style. One thing I caught myself always wearing is bracelets! But sometimes, they didn’t match my outfits, or I wish I had a certain type of bracelet…and I am always buying evil eye bracelets if I see them when I am shopping, but every time I bought a bracelet, I was always wishing it was a certain way, so I decided to make my own. I designed a bracelet I wanted to wear, made out of beads, and turned it into reality. Surprisingly, I had a lot of compliments on that one bracelet I made, and my friends and co-workers were asking what store I got it from. This gave me the idea to start my own collection. I knew it wasn’t impossible, but it would be a lot of work. I always love a fun challenge, so, I set myself a new goal. This sounds cheesy, but the truth is, I decided to chase my dream. Where this will go? I still have yet to find out!
Me: Tell me about your design process. How do you decide on which pieces to use for your designs?
AA: Truthfully, I don’t have a process when I am designing! If I go somewhere, I see something, I always wonder if it’ll look good if I turned it into a bracelet. I am always curious about everything. Just the other day, I looked at a wine bottle and I wondered if there was a way to turn the cork screws into a bracelet! I research, go shopping for beads, and buy them. When they come in, I play with them, and put pieces together until I love it! I have taken a part a bracelet probably over 50 times just because there was something I didn’t like about it. I just don’t want the bracelets to look good, I want them to be amazing. If I love it, then I know others will too!
Me: Which piece from your collection is your favorite?
AA: I can’t just pick one that is my favorite. Each piece I make has a different story to how I came up with the design, that makes me love each piece for it’s own. Although, I love my evil eye collection, because of the meaning behind ‘evil eyes’, and wearing them for protection. I love the tassel collection, because I remember playing around with string and different colors for hours and trying to tie gold thread around it, until I finally made the perfect tassel.
Me: If you could design a piece for any celebrity or model who would it be, what would you make for them, and why?
AA: I would say either Priyanka Chopra or Kim Kardashian. I would make an evil eye bracelet, because I feel like they believe in the meaning behind it, and would appreciate an evil eye bracelet design that no one else has.