Against all odds Nneka Jackson still showed the world B-Flyy. With a story as compelling as her pieces, learn how the creator and CEO has emerged as one of the premier accessory designers in Detroit.
Tell the audience about your background.
I own B-Flyy creations. I have been designing jewelry since I was a little girl, but professionally selling it for about 10 years. I’m also an artist. I paint, I sculpt… I was more into the art side than the jewelry side. I would make girl for myself. When I had a daughter, I used to make jewelry for her in a miniature size of mine. People saw and said ‘this newborn baby has on jewelry…who did it’? They wanted jewelry also and that’s how I started selling jewelry. Now I do more jewelry than art…To do something I love full time has been awesome.
What inspired your current collection?
One of my clients is Monica Blaire. She was one of the Kresge fellow last year and I designed several pieces for her. One of which was also a musical instrument. It attached at the finger, went all the way down to the wrist and it was covered in bells. The music that she created did something to my work.The energy from that show really helped me create an entire line full of really amazing things. I got to go to several other Kresge shows. To see the art here in Detroit, the music here in Detroit. That’s what really influenced my current collection.
Who owns B-flyy creations?
Comedian and WJLB radio personality Coco, Erykah Badu, Estelle, former Destiny’s Child member Letoya Luckett, actress/singer Drew Sidora, and Season 9 America’s Next Top model contestant Bianca. Monica Blaire owns and wore my pieces for Blac Magazine June 2011 issue, and Maureen Yancy (mother of J Dilla). I have a lot of clients in Detroit area and I’m so thankful for each and every one of them.
Who would you like to see your jewelry on?
Everybody. I try to make such a diverse collection so one thing doesn’t appeal to one client. I do make custom pieces in custom settings. Give me swash of material and I’ll find beads to match from a swash of material.
I recently made it to the semi finals for the upcoming reality show project accessories. Although I didn’t make it, The judges told me to think globally, not locally. I was told to re shoot my portfolio and send it to Elle and Vogue immediately.
Where can people find B-flyy creations?
The Runway inside Renaissance Center and Astute Artistry in Livonia.
What are the price points?
If you want custom pieces it usually cost more. The price range from $40 for a pair of earrings to $500. Depends on the materials used and the time involved to make the piece. I’m happy I’m always testing myself.
Due to the current economy have you faced any issues moving pieces?
There are some times but I’ve been fortunate enough that I have really awesome clients. I try to keep myself in different things, like photo shoots. Models buy jewelry at photo shoots. Designers buy jewelry at photo shoots. Also in doing fashion shows I just had to really diversify what I do to make sure the jewelry is selling and trying to keep what I do different from what other people are doing has been a big help. I’m fortunate enough to have been in business for 10 years.
What do you want people to know about you?
After leaving an abusive marriage I focused on my business. I’ve always had a goal. I’ve always had a dream. I had my oldest at 13. Statistics say I should have never graduate college. Statistics say I should never own my own business. But now here I am with my oldest in college no children, never been arrested. This is why I believe what I believe. No matter what people say about you. Be who you are. Do awesome things because you are meant to do awesome things.