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When my husband Bryan Brooks and I decided to launched Evelyn Brooks Designs in June of 2004;  I knew it was not going to be easy. I knew there was a lot of work and commitment to make the company work and make it profitable.

Evelyn Brooks -Runway to Peru - Fashion for Conservation

Evelyn Brooks -Runway to Peru – Fashion for Conservation

Perhaps my husband like many husbands out there thought OK, I will support her but who knows if this will work out. All my husband wanted was to make me happy. He always supported ALL my ventures. Even if he disagrees, he knew I would do it anyways. Even when we had our first child seven years ago; he said you will be able to manage and YES we did. When hard times came he was also there. There were months when he had to put money into my business because of many reasons, maybe no sales, because it was slow season, or simply the economy hit so badly that people weren’t buying. But I always stayed positive, contrary to my husband he was always realistic as he said to me, he wasn’t trying to hurt me, he was just realistic.

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Tyler & Stella are the engine of our everyday life.

Years passed by,  growing little by little our company. Those years have given us so much knowledge on regards to how the industry works, knowing my buyers so well that I learned that toughest buyers are tough because they don’t have time to mess around, and all they want to do is business with you (just so you know don’t take it personal, it is just business). I have had some of the most amazing buyers and mentors like the buyer from the National Building Museum in DC, or former founder of Empowered Women International Marga Fripp. I have met great people like my dear Peruvian professionals from the World Bank who invited us to be in charge of the Peru Handcraft Pavillion for three years during the Annual meetings.  Press and media who have come to events specifically to interview me, like Armand Hugon, or invite me to do a TV segment with Silvana Quiroz & Nestor Bravo from the number one morning show of Univision Buenos Dias DC.  My list will be long of all the support we have received. Seating with personalities that I could only dream of, it was at times surreal.  At times I thought how could someone so powerful actually be giving so much help, like Christine Brooks – Cropper founder of the DC Fashion Foundation, who has been my mentor for over ten years. Or meeting the editor in chief for different USA TODAY magazines who featured us in three different magazines nationwide.

I won’t bore you mentioning all the people who has been there for US. But check out some of the most important moments.

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Evelyn Brooks & Mrs. Flor Diaz (Peru Cultural Attache for the United States)

Evelyn Brooks & Mrs. Flor Diaz (Peru Cultural Attache for the United States)

Juan Luis Reus (Head of the Peru Trade Mission in Washington DC), Evelyn Brooks & Jose Corbera (Commerce Office Embassy of Peru in Washington DC)

Juan Luis Reus (Head of the Peru Trade Mission in Washington DC), Evelyn Brooks & Jose Corbera (Commerce Office Embassy of Peru in Washington DC)

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Photoshoot session with Sandro Gomez, Vanessa Arias and MUA by Eduardo Carcamo

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

All I could do is end up this blog saying that for years Evelyn Brooks Designs had a dream of designing and making Peruvian inspired jewelry mixed with contemporary art and following the latest trends. For years our social responsible commitment has been growing and continues to support different communities to help eradicate poverty, creating better living infrastructure, well paid jobs and promoting better education.

My interns, each an everyone, has touched my life in many different ways, some are married now, some are working at the best design houses in New York, there was one that call me once to Thank me so much because when she went to her final interview with Telemundo, the president said to her OMG you worked with Evelyn Brooks? and That is all the president of Telemundo needed to know, to immediately opened the doors to an easier interview that followed with a job position.

It is been TWELVE years so we must be doing something right, huh? The U.S. Government is now selling my jewelry designs through the Eastern National Parks at the Lincoln Memorial, the Jefferson Memorial and The Ford’s Theater. My collection with Peruvian huayruro seed20150622-Sergio-Davala-M-VP016s is sold nationwide. We have worked hard to come to more and more places and will continue to do it.

My latest venture is opening a shop in Cusco – Peru (Cusco Designers Showroom), the project that I actually thought my husband would be so against to, he was the one that told me: DO IT, I AM WITH YOU. DO IT. Even our nanny said I was waiting for your husband to scream and say NO, I SAID NO (just cause we know him so well…LOL)

And we have so many projects coming up in the next months, we will keep you posted. Thanks for being there for us, after all these years. My commitment is to continue bringing innovative jewelry designs that you will feel proud to wear or you would love to give them away as gifts.

From now through July 15Th we are offering 15%off all our online purchase. Use Code: ANNIVERSARY15

Till next time,

Evelyn Brooks

As a designer how many times do you dream to be in the fashion capital of the world? Many times right?

At least I remember my first trips to NYC strolling by Soho, wandering the so called showrooms, browsing windows for some inspiration, and simply dreaming to showcase/sell my work in New York.                               One day about seven years ago I found a gallery of art, and they were interested in my jewelry line. I got so excited and thought OMG! I will be in NYC, but my dream of being in NYC wasn’t that easy and didn’t last long.

First, the agreement the gallery wanted to work on wasn’t convincing to me, as much as I really wanted to be in NYC. I felt the gallery wasn’t after all doing something beneficial for me as an artist, but mostly for their own convenience. So that was my first attempt to get in NYC. A year later the gallery closed.
Later on I did the American Made Show in Baltimore. and met the buyer from the Art and Design Museum in NYC who fell in love with my collection, and has carried my line ever since. It was amazing to sell my crochet collection to the MAD Museum in NYC.

I love New York, and I have kept looking for opportunities to continue growing as a jewelry designer, attending trade shows in New York and in other cities in the United States, for the past three years.
The Peru Trade Commission in NYC has helped me showcase my work in different opportunities. While doing these fabulous shows in New York, I met another Peruvian jewelry designer Andrea Bocchio. Over the years we developed a friendship.
We collaborated at different events together and one day Andrea mentioned a project she was launching with Michelle Peglau of Hortensia. The project will be called “El Mercado Peru” and it would be a curated pop up shop where Peruvian Designers would come together and be represented at one place. Of course location was key to the success of this pop up shop as well as many other things that come along opening a shop. They found a high traffic area in the heart of Manhattan with a lot of corporate offices around as well as tourist traffic.

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El Mercado Peru launched on October 18th and will run through Nov. 15th, 2015. Next time you are in NYC stop by and visit us. The first Peruvian pop up shop is located at 501 Lexington Ave. New York NY. 10017
If we go back to my question, “Is your design ready for New York?,” or any other international market:

  • So before you consider entering international markets like New York consider this:
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    Good Luck Adjustable bracelet $68 www. elmercadoperu.com

    New York is definitely so fashionable and trendy, there are pieces that sell more in NYC that at other markets, for example in my case the trendy silver adjustable good luck adjustable bracelet does fabulous in New York.

  • If you are thinking to invest in a project, make sure the project will help your brand/product  grow; make sure  your sales representative  feel proud to carry your line.
  • Trade shows are a great place to sell your products at a bigger scale but first visit them before you invest money on them.
  • If you agree to have your products sold on consignment, make sure the agreement is clean, clear and fair for everyone involved.
  • With social media being so important nowadays, make sure you are not just waiting for your sales representative to push your product, do your own social media and send people to your reps, or the stores that carry your products. The more they sell the more they will re-order from you;)
  • Have a great communication with all of those selling your products from sales reps, to museum buyers, etc.

Let me share with you what Michelle Peglau has to say about “El Mercado Peru”, and maybe their business model will be a great fit for your product;)

 

Best of LUCK!

Evelyn