I think I fell for Hazen Jewelry at first sight and then I read about the darling Taylor Miller and the rest was history. This amazing powerhouse has been designing jewelry since the age of 9 and has really never stopped. As a mother of a 12 year old I would be beyond proud to see her be so passionate about a calling. To me Taylor does have a calling to create such beautiful pieces and run her company the way she does.
You will absolutely love this artist, pinky swear!!
Do you see what I mean? I love how simple yet completely elegant her pieces are. And the attention to detail is over the top, just look at the toggle on the Cynthia bracelet. And since I love all things pearl and gold I knew it was a must have for me. I love it so! #yesplease
Designer Taylor Miller discovered her love for jewelry design and creation at an early age. After being introduced to the art at the age of nine, she eagerly developed her own unique design style and dove into the design world after repurposing her grandmother’s costume jewelry as new creations. Within six months of beginning to make jewelry, Taylor held her first trunk show at the acclaimed store Oxford Floral in Oxford, Mississippi and was named the Mississippi Museum of Art’s young artist of the year (2002).
For years, Taylor honed her skills on her bead-swathed bedroom floor, creating nearly all of her collections entirely by hand. As the line has grown, Taylor continues to oversee the creative direction and material selection of the jewelry and has enlisted skilled assistants to help her produce her designs, always with the same attention to detail. A Houston native, Taylor is a graduate of Southern Methodist University’s Cox School of Business and currently resides in Dallas, Texas. Today, having sold tens of thousands of pieces of jewelry, Taylor continues to share her passion and creative flair with others through distinctive collections that make up the Hazen line.
I knew I wanted to learn more about the adorable Taylor after reading The Hazen Story (seen above) on the website. Lucky for me she was willing to indulge me with an interview ...
First of all, tell me about Taylor. Where did you grow up and how did your childhood influence your career as an artist?
I was born and raised in Houston, Texas to parents originally from Memphis, Tennessee. Integral to my upbringing was an appreciation for detail and the finer things in life, most assuredly a nod to my southern heritage. As early as I can remember, I was helping set the table with fine china and silver, arranging flowers in bud vases and tying big bows in my hair. Like most other young girls, I loved to play dress up, particularly with my grandmothers’ beautiful gowns, chic tortoise clutches and statement costume jewelry pieces. Those dress up sessions turned into days where I reworked the necklaces and bracelets to appear as new designs that appealed to my eye and looked current yet beautiful for me to try on and then for my mom wear out. From as early as I can remember, I have had my hands “dirty” in design and have been honing my personal design aesthetic ever since.
Independent of the design driven traditions that surrounded me as I grew up, my career as an artist would never have happened without my incredibly supportive parents. Since day one, their emotional support of my wanting to create jewelry has never wavered. Their commitment of time and energy to encouraging me and helping me develop and grow Hazen has been invaluable.
Anything you wish you had done along the way and didn't do?
To be honest, there really isn’t anything I wish I had done or had not done. I can very clearly see how every door opened and door closed has led us to where we are today, and I am most grateful for each of those experiences!
There was never a particular moment when I decided to launch Hazen. Instead, Hazen was the product of a little girl enjoying her hobby which just happened to develop rather quickly into a business. From making pieces and selling them at my brother’s little league baseball games to selling the pieces at a store in Mississippi, all before the age of 10, Hazen has evolved over the past 14 years very organically.
Share two people who have inspired you in your business and why?
I have had the privilege of meeting incredibly talented and successful business people from an early age, and tidbits of wisdom and knowledge shared over time continuously accumulate to influence my day to day decisions for Hazen. Particularly, Vera Bradley’s founder Barbara Baekgaard’s continued encouragement and support of my design, story and overall business has been an incredible encouragement for my continuation and investment in growth of Hazen. In addition, my dad has largely inspired me in my business. From a very early age, he trained my eye to see Hazen through a business lens and helped me to understand the cumulative positive impact of my everyday efforts and work.
Can you share a high point in your career and what was that like for you?
This past October we opened our first Hazen retail location in Dallas. We threw a big party to celebrate and it truly was the most special night of my life thus far. To have people who had been introduced to Hazen 14 years ago to friends who had just learned of us 14 days ago all in one place to celebrate was such an incredible, impactful experience. More than anything, it reminded me that behind all the non-glamorous hard work that goes into what we do, we are serving real people with real stories; having the privilege of being a part of those stories is a gift we need to continuously celebrate and steward well.
What inspires you to create?
Color and pattern are arguably the two most influential forces in my design process. Seeing colors and materials brought to life in new ways by combing them with one another in new shapes and patters spurs on new designs almost automatically.
Do you have a favorite piece in your line?
I really don’t; I love each with different outfits and for different occasions. I will say that I wear our Margaret bracelets and Sutton earrings most frequently these days though!
Do you have a favorite color?
Definitely a tossup between aqua and coral!
Anything you must have to spurn creativity?
I wouldn’t say there is one particular thing that I couldn’t create without but good music and coffee definitely facilitate the process!
Favorite item on your desk (or creative space)?
A Thimble Press card with the verse Phillipians 2:3-4 on it
What is your favorite way to unwind?
A glass of rosé, a good candle burning and Leon Bridges playing in the background
If we spotted you on a random Saturday what would you be doing?
I’m definitely guilty of working on the weekends, but if I’m not working from home, you might find me on a long walk around the neighborhood!
Five must haves.
almond milk lattes, frequent Drybar visits, sunroof weather, red lipstick, Bible at my bedside
Nothing worth having comes easily.
Don't you love her and her amazing jewels? I am completely smitten with both. There are so many other incredible pieces on the Hazen website and so much inspiration to be had on her Instagram.
I hope your day is fabulous. How can it not be with the weekend just hours away and of course after meeting the darling Taylor your weekend just became so much more fantastic!
Have the best day!!