Creative pulls on heritage for fashion accessory line
Ebony Heritage Boutique is embracing black culture through creativity, artistry and fashion. “Your outfit starts from your ears down. So it’s very important to start there and dress accordingly. Many of my pieces are dedicated to strong leaders in the community and devoted to black empowerment and the furtherment of all people. I am using my platform to reinforce that black of all shades is beautiful,” designer and business owner Sydona Birmingham told Living.
As an avid jewellery lover, she started out in the business as a reseller, all the while honing her skill from the knowledge she garnered from YouTube. One thing led to another and soon she was creating her very own design, much to the delight of others who soon became repeat customers.
“The tassel earrings and painted wooden earrings are my customers’ favourites. They love them because they are unique and beautiful. Not only are they attention grabbers, they are also elegant enough to go anywhere from the beach to the boardroom,” the designer added.
With jewellery making being both an expression and direct reflection of her own style, she draws inspiration from materials that move her like brightly coloured stones or sparkling pendants. Her artistic process only grows from there.
“Inspired by things that are bold, daring, and sophisticated, I will use wood, thread, yarn, resin, and pendants for my pieces. I love painting on wood. It helps to relax my mind, especially after a stressful day. I’ve always been fascinated by yarns. My weaving skills have certainly improved while seemingly assisting with a better navigation of life as well,” she said, adding, “And I have the most fun with resin. There are many ways to design and craft the most awesome designs from them. I have fun while making all of my pieces. I call it my therapy.”
The names are equally as stunning as the pieces. Renee, Ruby, Tiffany and Ebony Women are just a few of the standouts which add even more magic to an outfit. Noting that she never starts a piece with a name in mind, Birmingham gives herself time and space after the completion of a set to give an identity.
“After pictures are ready for posting, if they look like Chantal to me, that’s what I call them (laughs). Most of their names are black/African inspired names for women. I feel like the ancestors are guiding me through the process. And most of the names are black or African inspired for women.”
Birmingham’s biggest hurdle has been sourcing necessary material for the creative process, “Most of the materials I need are from overseas, and that can be annoying at times. I must be creative when determining which materials to use. Also, if they are bought in Jamaica, they are too overpriced.”
She remains focused on making fabulous pairs for her clients, who are mostly performers, singers, artistes, dancers, and those who are lovers of fashion, art and culture. “They seem to have a deeper connection with my pieces, and I appreciate that!”
Although she currently offers earrings mostly, Birmingham’s goal is to one day provide diaspora-inspired clothing, natural skin care and more accessories. “I hope that within the next 10 years I can build a brand that speaks for our black culture and leave a legacy that will be here for centuries,” she added.