Today, RAGTRADE ATLANTA Blogger Imani Aldridge had the opportunity to interview emerging jewelry designer Kam Throckmorton. The interview covered BEAUXLD (pronounced bold), Throckmorton’s new jewelry brand and how she is contributing to the growth of Atlanta’s fashion and accessory industry. We were also able to catch a few tips on body positivity, being a personal stylist, and how Kam’s brand is helping women to embrace themselves.

  • How did you get into fashion and what made you decide to start your own label?

Fashion chose me, I’ve been 6’2” since the 7th grade. I wanted to be noticed for something other than my height. I loved fashion, even though the lack of options in my size told me it didn’t love me. My fashion choices were men’s clothing, a sad selection of women’s basic and my grandmother’s fabulous vintage jewelry. I learned how to use accessories to create the image I wanted and manipulate the eye to focus on my best features while distracting from my less than favorite features.

I have a strong emotional connection to accessories (especially jewelry). I see jewelry as armor. It levels the playing field in terms of sizes. Jewelry fits everyone and can take a mass-produced dress and make it uniquely yours.

 

  • What made you start your own label?

I am passionate about the body positivity movement. As a personal stylist, the hardest part of my job is rewiring the message many women have that they aren’t thin, pretty, etc. enough. I believe this comes from constantly comparing themselves to the images they see in the media of “perfect women”.

I was working for companies who rejected the idea of size and age diversity in their models and I could no longer put my heart into projects I didn’t support. Instead of staying frustrated, I took action. I partnered with a bold woman whose strengths complemented my weaknesses and we created BEAUXLD. We make the decisions and we are committed to using real women in our marketing. Our models are “role models” who are beautiful inside and out.

BEAUXLD is the perfect blend of my personal mission and my love of bold accessories.

 

  • How do you define your particular style or approach to fashion?

Fashion is art. Getting dressed is one of the creative things we get to do every day. I love that I can tell the world how I expect to be treated just by what I choose to wear. Personal image is important and something I protect and I also like to have fun with clothes. I’m not afraid to make mistakes. That’s usually where the magic happens!

Elizabeth Debicki in The Man From U.N.C.L.E.

My style is a pretty eclectic. I love a contradiction, a lace skirt with a Johnny Cash tank top or a retro tennis shoe with a party dress. I wear entirely too much jewelry, you can usually hear me coming a mile away. I love the sound of bracelets clanging together. If I had my way, I would dress like Elizabeth Debicki in the movie The Man from U.N.C.L.E.

My mom was an international flight attendant. She was influenced by women all over the world and she brought that home to me. She was never worried about wearing something that her friends would like. It was all about wearing what made her happy. A teachable moment for me was the day she came out wearing a polka-dot dress, polka-dot earrings, polka-dot shoes and I believe a matching purse. From a stylist perspective, it was all wrong but she loved it (she loves a theme and polka-dots). She confidently strutted around town and I swear she must have gotten a hundred compliments. That is the day I learned confidence is more powerful than any “what to wear” rule.

“Confidence is more powerful than any “what to wear” rule.” – Kam Throckmorton

Learn more about my style icons https://www.glamkam.com/style-icons

  • What are the inspirations and motivations behind your approach?

My favorite jewelry is intentional, it is the piece you plan your whole outfit around. It’s the jewelry you pack in your carry-on because you know you can’t replace it if it gets lost. For me, it’s a brass rhino ring I got on the street in Hong Kong. It starts conversations. Intentionally worn jewelry is not an afterthought and it is certainly not something you worry about seeing your friend wearing. It’s the “I wish I could pull that off” necklace that makes any outfit better.

 

As a personal stylist, I spend a lot of time in closets. I pay attention to the jewelry my clients wear and love. I know the perfect necklace length that makes you look 10 lbs thinner. Our jewelry is bold but it’s not about just being big, it’s about making a statement. It’s also about filling a hole in the marketplace.

I want women to have fewer pieces they love vs. a bunch of fast fashion jewelry that just adds to the clutter of life. Our best selling necklace is the Kam tassel necklace. It hits at the smallest part of the waist, it can be worn several ways and the tassels are interchangeable. I designed it after spending years adding extensions to my necklaces that hit in an awkward unflattering spot.

 

 

  • What are some trials and tribulations of being an emerging designer that you’ve faced?

Modern Love Cuff Bracelet

You have to remember who you are designing for and know it’s ok (and even a good thing) if not everyone likes you. Our name is BEAUXLD. We are designing for bold women who want bold jewelry, we are not for everyone and that’s ok. We love (and want) feedback on our product but a lot of that feedback is “can you make it smaller, can you cut the tassel in half”. The answer is “NO”, a smaller bracelet and shorter tassel necklace has been done and if that’s what you want, great but it’s not our brand.

Sourcing has been a challenge. Our goal was to be American made as much as possible but finding factories and parts in the US is harder than we thought. We have several factories around the world and the time difference and the language barrier can be a challenge.

Being creative is a blessing but I know my limitations when it comes to a lot of the day-to-day business operations. Having a brilliant partner has been the key to making this work. At this stage, we are both doing things that aren’t in our wheelhouse but it’s a great learning process.

 

  • How do you define success?

I believe confident women can change the world. Any opportunity I get to grow my platform and help women realize how amazing they are counts as a success to me. I am living a full, authentic life working with wonderful women every day. That is success.

Thanks for reading!

Be sure to follow Kam on Instagram @GlamKamStyle and BEAUXLD @BEAUXLDStyle