Reece Blaire: meet the girls of sass, wit, & sophistication

BrandingPhotoShoot-91 Remember in middle school when you’d come home from school blabbing about how Suzie has way cuter clothes than you anddd her mom lets her wear mascara. SO not fair! You spent lunchable after lunchable pining over her pretty skirts, non-plastic pearls, and straightened hair. If girls in their 20’s still went to middle school, this Suzie character would be walking around with a custom, gold RB monogram necklace delicately placed around her neck.

This RB stands for Reece Blaire – the dynamic duo of up and coming jewelry designers.

ReeceBlaire Blanc I’ve known the girls of Reece Blaire for quite some time. Katelyn, Emily and I were all in the same sorority. Emily rushed first, then Katelyn, and I the following year. We did as all sorority sisters do: we laughed, we cried, and we threw a lot of parties that got us into trouble. Looking back, I can’t help but relate our time together with Reece Blaire’s three elements: Sass, Wit, and Sophistication.

They were certainly sassy… how else would we get rush numbers? But on the other hand, their wit always surprised me. Not that I ever thought they were a pair of dumb blondes, but I have distinct memories of Katelyn quoting the dictionary. I’m not even kidding. As far as sophistication goes, well, let’s just say it was a work in progress… We were in college after all.

All grown up with numerous lessons learned, they have turned these three attributes into a catchy slogan for their lifestyle blog and original jewelry designs. They describe these three elements as:

Sass

It is crucial for every woman to have. We’ve learned through experience that it is important not to be a pushover. Sometimes you just need to throw a little tamed sass into a difficult situation.

Wit

This explains itself. One of our most favorite quotes to date is, “Every time you are able to find humor in a difficult situation, you win.” Being able to laugh through a hard time is key to finding sanity.

Sophistication

Above all else, we strive to be sophisticated women. Undoubtedly, we both have our moments where our inner demons make an appearance, but you will never regret maintaining your poise in a less than favorable situation.

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With a year of tremendously consistent business under their belts, I have to wonder how they got started. The big idea took off with a blog.

“I preferred the fashion side of blogging,” Katelyn tells me, “Emily preferred the lifestyle and entertainment side, so it was a perfect pairing. Reece Blaire literally started through a text that went something like, “Hey Em, let’s start a blog and call it Reece Blaire.” Emily’s answer was very, very simple — “Okay!”

“After dabbling in blogging, we found some of Emily’s old jewelry she had crafted up for her wedding in 2011. I urged Emily to create some new pieces. She experimented with a few designs and hated them. I, on the other hand, loved them. Using our established social media accounts as a platform, we showcased the jewelry to get some feedback. The demand was instantaneous, so we ran with it!”

I’m sort of in the same boat – taking the social media route to creativity. What challenges did you have in the 1st year?

“LOL – literally,” they both chuckle. “We could probably write a novel on our first-year challenges alone. Aside from the normal challenges, like competitors and expenses, we became very frustrated with the lack of support from some of our peers. Naturally our family and close friends were amazingly supportive, but other acquaintances could be quite nasty at times. Ironically, the people who didn’t believe in us fueled our success by giving us a drive to work harder and become a better brand. And the haters gonna hate, hate, hate, hate hate…”


If you lack confidence in your brand and the job you are doing, you are only setting yourself up for failure.


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Follow the girls on Instagram for their latest releases: @reeceblaire

Why baubles?

“We went through multiple different ideas for taglines that would be catchy and embody Sass, Wit, & Sophistication. Baubles is an older term for jewelry that nobody really used. To be honest, we found the term “baubles” in a thesaurus search and formed a phrase around it. As our bangles look best in a stack, Keep Your Baubles Stacked seemingly formed itself. The bigger the better, right?”

I have to admit, there are so many bauble brands out there. How do you differentiate yourself?

“One of the main things we focus on is a strong brand image and brand identity. When we decided to pursue Reece Blaire as a career rather than a hobby, the first thing we did was rebrand. We want our customers to feel the Reece Blaire experience from the second they reach our website until they are wearing their purchased pieces. We strive for consistency. Our goal is for every customer, throughout every medium (retail locations, website, social media, trunk shows), to resonate with our brand and understand who we are as a business. We pay attention to every little detail from the filters on our photos to the captions on our pictures.”

Starting a business is a lot of work – everyone knows that. What goals have you accomplished as a company so far? What lies ahead?

“For the last year, we’ve both been pursuing Reece Blaire part-time. We’ve successfully rebranded, gotten our merchandise into over 80 retail locations, and increased our product line.”

Katelyn has finished her MBA and Emily has just recently had a baby (Congrats Em!). So now that they’ve reached some personal milestones, it’s time they focus on Reece Blaire. Katelyn will be pursuing Reece Blaire full-time, while Emily takes some time to be with her new born little girl. They are launching their new Reece Blaire Collection line this week (SWOON! My favorites, old and new, listed below), and have new arrivals lined up for February and March. “We are looking for a warehouse to move our business operations, and hope to expand our product line even more by August 2015. Long-run, we would love to be featured in a department store, such as Belk or have our own studio shoppe. Right now, we are taking it one day at a time!”

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Who says New Years Day doesn’t come with presents?

Since we’re no longer in middle school and we’re actually able to attain Suzie’s cool baubles without our mother’s help, Reece Blaire will be giving 20% off their website with the code BLANC20! Hurry, hurry – coupon code lasts until January 3rd. My favorites are linked below.

 Blanc Favorites via Reece Blaire:

www.reeceblaire.com

@reeceblaire

how to: strap & tassle necklace

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You know that moment of absolute lust you get when seeing the perfect piece of jewelry? Yup, it happened. My stylish boss walked into the office with this killer boho necklace – a chunky leather strap (which had her initial embossed on one side) escalated down to these gorgeous stones and ending with a perfectly plump, oversize tassel. Ugh, I moaned. I want.

In the midst of The Every Girl’s 30-day-Wear-Your-Wardrobe challenge, I had sworn myself to not buy any new clothes or accessories for a month… not that I could afford the necklace anyway. Being the smartalic that I am, I knew I could find a loop hole. For those who can’t afford, make. And for those who can’t buy clothes, buy art supplies. Nailed it.

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Here’s what you’ll need:

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Depending on your beads, $25 should get you all the supplies you need to make this necklace.
  • A yard of 1″ thick leather, belt strapping, or ribbon of your choosing. You want to think durability here.
  • Crafting brads (these look like push pins that have two legs), any size
  • Mod Podge or another gluing agent
  • Craft wire. Be intentional with color.
  • Beads of your choosing. I went for a tribal look, but stones or agates will work too!
  • Fringe (I chose leather) or a string tassel

I spent a total of $21 at Hobby Lobby.

(Step No. 1)

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Make sure your ends don’t fray by using Mod Podge or glue

Secure your strap: use Mod Podge to seal the ends of your strap to avoid fraying. Once dry, fold about an inch of the strap over to make a loop and push your brads through the two layers. Separate the ends of the brads to secure the loop. I used small, antique copper brads so I used three on each side. If you have larger, more decorative brads, you can use less.

(Step No. 2)

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Tip: fold over your wire end to avoid getting caught in your strap.

Cut 4-feet of wire. Start by folding over the tip of your wire. This will avoid it getting caught in your strap material. Next, push about 18 inches of wire through the strap loop. Wrap the wire through your strap loop repeatedly so you get a layered look. Secure the loose (bent) end of your wire by twisting it around your newly created wrap.  String the first side of beads.

(Step No. 3)

Glue, roll, & hold to secure
Glue, roll, & hold to secure

Create your tassel. Simply apply glue to the top of your fringe and roll like a sleeping bag. Once your glue is dry, string your wire through the center hole, starting from the bottom and through to the top. Then, wrap the tassel’s top base for security (same as step one). Once you have a wrapped look you like, string your wire through the center hole again, starting from the bottom and through to the top. You should have a tassel that sits happily between the two sides of your necklace.

(Step No. 4)

I chose tribal beads for a neutral look
I chose tribal beads for a neutral look

String your beads on side two. Repeat step one to secure the other side of your necklace.

(Step No. 5)

Share your version on Instagram (@blancblog) or in the comment section below!
Share your version on Instagram (@blancblog) or in the comment section below!

Go rock your designer look-alike necklace. Share your version on Facebook and Instagram and tag me, @blancblog!