Jewelry Designer Samantha Wills Talks Beauty, Biz & BABY WIPES!!!

» September 19th, 2014 «

fashionlush, samantha wills, #girlboss

EEK! I am so excited to have this fox on the blog I can barely deal!!!

If you haven’t heard of Samantha Wills jewels…well you’re a. more than likely living under a rock & b. about to have a brand new jewelry obsession.

Samantha Wills isn’t just one of those individuals who came from money & hired a bunch of people to make a jewelry line with her name on the label- she started this whole thing herself from the bottom up. She poured her heart & soul into every detail of her company and has turned her passion into a seriously epic jewelry empire.

Which, IMO, that’s what makes an entrepreneur. Not someone who just pulls some strings, starts a business, gets other people to run it, & frolics around the Maldives sipping fruity cocktails & tanning. It’s someone who works after hours/weekends, oversees every detail, & gets there hands dirty on the daily. When you look at the details of Samantha Wills jewelry, you can literally tell & feel the personal touch put into it and that makes owning a piece that much more special.

You catch my drift? Basically, she’s a total #GIRLBOSS & I’m wayyy into it.

fashionlush, samantha wills, australian jewelry designer

So… when I got the chance to pick this babes brain, you better believe I wanted all the dirty deets on how she began her company, what it takes to run a seriously huge biz, what keeps her inspired, how she banishes creative blocks, her top secret health & beauty tips (get ready to have a whole new view on baby wipes!), Fall faves & so so much more. Trust- it’s a good read!

Also– you gotta be sure check out her jewelry!! It’s to-die-for & the delivery is just out of control chic (sooo Insta-worthy, LOL!). Although it was really tough, I rounded up my top fave Samantha Wills pieces below for all of you guys to ch-ch-check out. As you can see, I am really digging layered necklaces & dainty pieces::

1. Tribal Dreaming Necklace layered w/ the Voyage to India Pedant Necklace.

2. Wanderlust Necklace layered w/ the Leo Necklace & the White Howlite Necklace

3. Heartbeats in the Sun Bracelet (so good!!)

Without any further adieu, pleased to introduce all of you lushes to Samantha Wills!! Happy reading & Happy Friday! xx, E

fashionlush, samantha wills, creative studio space

» Hey Samantha! So excited to have you & your beautiful creations on the blog today! Please, introduce yourself!

Samantha Wills: Thank you for having me! Samantha Wills // 32 // New York City & Sydney (usually 6 weeks NYC, 2 weeks Sydney consistently) // Creative Director //

» How did you get started in the world of jewelry design? What’s the story behind the brand?

SW: I started the brand when I was 21, just a hobby selling at the local Bondi Beach markets (In Sydney, Australia). I had a normal job through the week & then I started making more money at the markets then at my job – about a year in, a friend offered me a space on a showroom wall at Australian fashion week, I took the space hoping to make the $500 cost back & walked away with $17,000 worth of orders! I quit my job the next day & gave everything I had to building this brand.

» Celebs are love love loving Samantha Wills jewels, anyone in particular that really got you starstruck seeing them in your creations?

SW: Yes! All of them make me star struck! Having Eva Mendes wear our Bohemian Bardot ring, which has since become our signature piece was pretty special. As was having a piece appear in the SATC film.

fashionlush, samantha wills, female entrepreneurs

» Seeing that you are a serious kick-ass & take names kinda entrepreneur w/ a growing jewelry empire, do you have any tips for making it in the biz?

SW: It requires a dedication that is beyond anything you can comprehend going into starting a business. I started out 10 years ago & it was nearly as competitive (Facebook wasn’t even invented!), and in the early days, I was working 20 hours days & didn’t take a holiday for 3 years. It takes your everything, but if you truly love what you are doing, and it is your true passion, it won’t seem like a job, it will feel like an incredible, challenging journey.

» What inspires your work & your beautiful creations? How do you continue to stay inspired & dodge any unwanted “creative blocks”?

SW: To me, the creative element is the easiest part – that’s the fun part! I once read a Tom Ford article that I love & he said, as a creative, you are expected to have genius ideas, four times a year, on specific dates. And its so true – everyone assumes having a creative company means everything you do is design / creative related. While it starts & ends with product, it really is only a small part of the business process.

When all else fails – do SOMETHING. Anything. I find that the blocks are only prolonged by procrastination.

fashionlush, samantha wills, female entrepreneurs» Tell us about some projects you are currently working on with Samantha Wills jewelry.

SW: We are investing a lot more into our FINE division- we have done costume accessories for such a long time, its great to be able to work in finer metals & really infuse our signature style into that.

We also have a new handbag line in the works for next summer & our bridal division has just re-launched, which, while titled bridal, is designed for any type of after dark soiree. In association with this, we have also launched The Wedding Journal – a digital platform that showcases the collection in editorials & also lists our favorite inspirations in the industry.

» Any top secret beauty/hair tips & tricks you can’t live without?

SW: Replace your makeup remover wipes with baby wipes – I was given this tip by a makeup artist– not only are they cheaper, but they are designed for baby’s skin, so they only have the softest ingredients – also, as old school as it is, water is best beauty skin treatment!

» You are in such fab shape—any healthy tips for girls with a hectic lifestyle?

SW: That is very lovely of you to say, my schedule has been crazy as of late, so I don’t feel that great! Travelling a lot, you are often battling jet lag & the last thing you want to do is workout, so if I can’t drag myself to the hotel gym, I really ensure I watch what I’m eating, ordering often just bowls of steamed vegetables.

Regarding workouts, if you find something you love, it doesn’t feel like a chore, sometimes this takes testing a few things, but try finding a class that you like & hopefully a friend will like it to. I do Flybarre with one of my best girlfriends, so not only do we get to spend the hour together, but we always grab a coffee afterwards – so it makes it a social outing, with a bit of toning in the middle! :)

fashionlush, samantha wills, #GIRLBOSS

» If we emptied your purse right now, what would we find?

SW: Lots of currency from different countries – but all up its probably worth no more then $50! I need to sort thru it. In the past 2 weeks I have been to London, Singapore, Australia, New Zealand, China & Hong Kong!

» What’s the first thing you notice in an outfit & why?

SW: If the person wearing it, is rocking it. It is the confidence you have that shines the brightest, so if something doesn’t make you feel good, don’t wear it. I think it is also good for ease of life, to cull your closet to contain only things you feel great in. if you haven’t worn it for ages or you don’t feel good in it, simply get rid of it.

» What do you skimp on fashion wise? What do you splurge on?

SW: The older I get, the more I purchase investment pieces. They fit the body better & they last so much longer. On basics, I still splurge on however, T-shirts from American Apparel are my favorite.

fashionlush, samantha wills, zodiac collection» Fave places to shop, online or otherwise?

SW: & are my favorites.

» Your Top 5 Fall Must Haves:

SW: black skinny leg jeans, studded Chloe boots, Givenchy bag, super super super chunky grey knit scarf & a Rag & Bone felt hat. Sadly, I only currently own the first & last item!

» Best piece of advice you’ve ever been given?

SW: Eat well. Travel Often.

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DIY Ginger Rose Lemonade (Fancy, Huh?)

» September 18th, 2014 «

ginger ale recipe, rose lemonade, fashionlush, drink recipe

I have this weird habit that involves ordering a lot of drinks anywhere I go. At breakfast I typically order a dirty chai, a fresh squeezed grapefruit juice, & ice water w/ lemon. If I am just stopping in at 7-11, I’ll usually grab a cold green tea, a sparkling lemon flavored water, & a grapefruit Pellegrino. I just like to have my options, ya know?

Back when we were in Copenhagen, we stopped in at the cutest lil’ cafe & I did my regular order three drinks thing. Starting with a fresh mint tea, then an iced coffee, & finishing it off w/ a ginger rose lemonade to go. The fresh mint tea was so yum, the coffee was ya know- iced coffee, but that GRL… seriously next level.

You all now know that I have a legit addiction to anything/everything ginger (remember- we went over this last week). So, kind of a no brainer that I was going to either a. find it back in the states & buy by the dozen or b. make it!! Searching for it was a bust, so naturally- I went w/ the latter.

It’s basically the most bomb ginger ale you’ve ever tasted, minus all the crap, plus some fancy additions (the rose & the lemons). Not to mention, those fresh squeezed lemons make it the most refreshing drink ever on this planet, IMO.

I’m actually planning to remake it again this weekend for my girlfriends bday brunch, but this time I am throwing some champs into the mix. Sounds amaze- right?

Try it out & LMK what you babes think.

xx, E

ginger ale recipe, rose lemonade, fashionlush, drink recipe

The Ingreds:

» 1/2 cup Q Ginger Ale. Please please I beg don’t make this w/ Canada Dry!! Q Ginger Ale is the BEST! It uses real ginger, isn’t jam packed with high fructose corn syrup/sugar, is only 60 calories, & also is infused w. cardamom/ cayenne/ rose oil/ coriander/ & orange peel.

» 1/4 cup fresh squeezed lemon juice (I used Meyer lemons).

» 1 tsp. Rose Water- but make sure it’s the kind meant for cooking, not the kind meant for beauty. It’s not the easiest to find in stores, but they have it for sale here on good ole’ Amazon.

[ SIDEBAR: Rose Water is actually FAB for beauty uses & I am a huge fan!! Read more about it here & be sure to check out my fave beauty DIY for an epic Rose Water smoothing serum. ]

» Mint leaves, fresh- if possible.

ginger ale recipe, rose lemonade, fashionlush, drink recipe

» First, squeeze your lemon. Mix together your fresh lemon juice with your ginger ale. «

ginger ale recipe, rose lemonade, fashionlush, drink recipe

» Add in one tsp. of your rose water! The taste can be strong, so start w/ one tsp. If you need more, go from there! «

ginger ale recipe, rose lemonade, fashionlush, mint ice cubes

» Whip up some mint ice cubes using filtered H20, an ice cube tray, & your fresh mint (duh!) «

ginger ale recipe, rose lemonade, fashionlush, drink recipe

» Serve it up & enjoy! Cheers babes <3 «

Fashionlush x F21: DIY Petite Polaroid Magnets

» September 17th, 2014 «

diy mini polaroid magnets

Ready for a serious cuteness overload? The latest Fashionlush x F21 DIY collab ft. polaroids is one for the books, & your bookmarks bar- trust.

You can find all of the do it yourself dirty deets over at the Forever 21 blog, but before you do that… lemme give you guys a lil’ backstory re. this here project.

Warning: it’s about get a lil’ weird.

DIY fridge magnets

Let’s flashback to when I was 10 years old & some of my hobbies included:

+ Walking my guinea pig, Moesha (remember that show?!), through the neighborhood. I promise you, she did like it!!

+ Only wearing high top Converse & overalls, which isn’t really a hobby… but it was a defining quality, so I am sharing.

+ Listening to hardcore rap, w/ thanks to my older sister. My parents weren’t pleased.

+ Taking Polaroid pictures of anything and everything, especially Moesha (yes, this one just dated me).

+ Reading books about Elvis & collecting various Elvis memorabilia (pre-drug days). I bet you didn’t know he was born with a twin named Jessie, huh? #FUNFACT

+ & also collecting fridge magnets.

Told ya it’d get weird, cause let’s get real, I was weird. In all honesty though, little has changed from then to now…

…I replaced Moesha w/ Bitzy, I still love rocking Converse & overalls, when driving solo I definitely bump the throwback rap on full blast, I’m never w/o my FujiFilm Instax mini, I may or may not have Elvis barbies in my closet (so embarrassing), & over the years my magnet collection has become quite impressive.


So, now that you have some history on the situation, I am hoping it makes more sense to why I am getting all nostalgic. This project includes three of my all time favorite things from the past to the present: Polaroids, magnets, and (this one developed later in life) disproportionately small things.

It’s just too good & too damn cute.

Stick ‘em all of over your fridge, use them as wedding save the dates, include them in a baby shower game, decorate your cubicle and/or locker. The options are endless, but whatever you do with them, I can guarantee you’re friends are gonna beg you to make some for them. My tip to you- make doubles!

Happy crafting my DIY lushes & remember- all the how to instructions for this DIY can be found at the F21 blog.

xx, E

P.S. Don’t forget to tag #FashionlushDIY on any projects you do… I love to see the results!!

mini polaroid magnets

++ be sure to check out my DIY eyeball mani tutorial here! ++

DIY Polaroid Magnets

+ Got leftover magnets? Peep this post for another rad magnet DIY here. In the DIY mood and need some inspo? Scope all my exclusive F21 DIY collabs here. ++

Endless Summer

» September 16th, 2014 «

fashionlush, summer 2014 fashion, striped crop top

You may have heard, cause I know I haven’t stopped hearing about it from everyone & their Mom, that San Diego is suffering from a serious heat wave.

It’s true & it’s getting old.

It’s not like a nice go-the-beach kinda heat. More like, take the long way home & listen to the same song on repeat while going around the block a few times cause the only relief you can get is from the AC in your car kinda heat.

fashionlush, crocodile crossbody, crop top fashion, circle ray bans

Don’t get me wrong, I always appreciate a good summer. But this one is like a bad story that never seems to end. This heat & humidity just isn’t doing it for me.

My hair is OUT of control, dreaming of hot showers before bed, poor Bitzy wants to go on a walk- but I am pretty sure we will both pass out, I have the cutest outfit to wear w/ my black shag fur, and I am sleeping with an ice pack on my head.

Good times.

Honestly, even this look was pretty hard to wear, but my new Jeffrey Cambell Oriley boots really needed their big debut. I have been eyeing them for months now, & the second I saw they were 30% off… they were mine. That whole no wearing white after labor day thing? I’m calling a bluff. White all year long, thank you very much.

… & now that my new babes got their 15 minutes of fame, it’s time to stock up some mumus (aka my current fave #OOTD).

xx, E

jeffery campbell oriley boots, fashionlush, crop top ootd

++ Get the Look: Jeffrey Campbell Oriley boots (30% off) ||  Striped V-Neck Crop Top || Blk Denim Skirt high-waisted skirt (sold out), really loving this one & this one too! || Round Metal Ray-Bans ||  Silver Coin Handpiece || Crocodile Crossbody (sold out), similar babe here. ++

fashionlush, white ankle boots, jeffrey campbell oriley

++ ahhh, aren’t they amaze. Ankle cleavage is where it’s at. ++

fashionlush, jeffery campbell oriley boots, roun ray bans

++ Photo Cred: Natalie Sypkens ++

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This & That + A Sexy Lil’ Fashionlush Exclusive Deal

» September 15th, 2014 «

fashionlush, instax mini, polaroid photo album

++ Just snagged this cutesie mini photo album for all my Instax Mini snaps! ++

This weekend I was (& kinda still am) feeling a lil’ under the weather, so I kept things pretty mellow. Resting up, chugging green tea/H20, afternoon snuggle fests w/ Bitzy, drinking ginger shots, & OD-ing on this yummy fruit salad… ya know, the reg weekend things for when a nasty cold is sneaking up.

The main highlight though, was definitely the fact that I finally got to sit down (sans phone and computer) to watch Frozen w/ my girlfriends!!! Typically, Disney movies aren’t my thing, but I gotta say- this one is a gem. I meannnn… can Olaf can just come live with me & be my personal joker 24/7 already? I have a personal flurry awaiting his arrival (if you’ve seen the movie, you know what I’m talking about).

I may or may not have even subscribed to the Frozen soundtrack on Spotify & am listening to it on repeat every time I am in the car… It’s just too good.

Have you seen it? Have you heard it? Are you as obsessed me… & every 5 year old girl on the planet?? If not & you’re judging me right now, no biggy, but ya just gotta let it gooo & see the damn movie. Trust.

xx, E

P.S. If you are in a Monday slump, keep reading… cause I’ve got a Fashionlush exclusive that’s about to change your lip game for life.

fashionlush, city cosmetics coupon code, lip plumper

Lately, I have been all over that “I woke up like this” beauty look, which means my signature dark lippys have been replaced w/ my latest obsession/addiction/dependency- City Lips clear lip plumper (AKA liquid gold).

One swipe & it legit looks like you just left a lip filler appointment… minus that whole needle/pain/break the bank situation. Unlike most lip plumpers I’ve tried in the past- it actually REALLY works, doesn’t burn like a total b*tch, & doesn’t dry out your lips. It delivers some serious hydration & is a totally enjoyable plump (no pain, total gain).

Plus, it fills in all those unwanted fine lines & lasts for a super long time. Actually, I’ve realized that throughout the day the plump just grows & grows. Magic in a tube.

anddddd…. it’s your lucky day, cause I scored 2 exclusive to Fashionlush deals for all you plumped-up lip lovers!!::

+ Click here for a lipgloss BOGO offer.

+ Get 40% off sitewide w/ the coupon code FASHIONLUSH!

Or… you can always combine the two for a double whammy of discounts.

Really wanna know what you guys think, cause I can pretty much guarantee you’re gonna be blown the eff away.

fashionlush, pesto recipe, pesto dip

Sunday I decided to put my overgrown basil bush to good use w/ a DIY pesto dip for my Mom’s friends while they watched football (p.s. how cute are they?!).

Handmade pesto is seriously so much better tasting than the store bought crap & so easy to make that it’s kinda a no-brainer. Just throw 1/2 C. pine nuts, a couple handfuls of basil leaves, a sprinkle or two of shredded parm, & a drizzle of olive oil into a food processor.

You can use it on your pasta, as a sandwich spread, or my preference- make a three layer cracker dip w/ a thin layer of light cream cheese & some sundried tomatoes. So fresh and so delish!

fashionlush, target dollar section, thank you cards

++ The Target Dollar section, my go-to for stocking up on the cutest thank you cards!! ++

fashionlush, trader joes, matcha tea

++ Currently drinking: Trader Joes new Matcha Green Tea latte. Iced or hot, this stuff is my jam! ++

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