A True Gem: How Samantha Wills Launched Her Massive Career At 21 Years Old
Samantha Wills launched her own business at just 21 years old. Starting with a few hundred dollars and a big leap of faith, she catapulted to international success and made a name for herself on the global stage. After 15 years (earlier this year), Samantha felt that her jewelry brand had done all that it was set out to do and decided to close her jewelry business to focus on her career as a speaker, writer and creative. As Samantha wrote on social media, “aligning internal intuition with external awareness” was how she decided to close her business. She continued saying that “there was not one ounce of logic behind it, simply a gut feeling...I knew it was the right time to close that 15 year chapter, to honor the brand and the legacy it had achieved.” While her jewelry business may no longer be operating, there is so much to be learned in her story and her immense success.. How she created success, stuck by it, believed that her path was continuing to evolve, trusting in herself and her intuition and once again reinventing herself.
“I started out selling down at Bondi Beach markets for a year. A friend from there had a showroom wall at Australian Fashion Week and offered me a spot for $500. I ended up selling $17,000 worth of jewelry,” Samantha explained to us about her start. “At the end of the four days in the showroom, at just 22 years old, I literally thought: ‘f*ck it. I’m just going to do it.’ I quit my job the next day, and decided to build a jewelry brand.”
The Samantha Wills brand is now internationally recognized for beyond her jewelry designs that were seen on the likes of Taylor Swift, Beyonce, Rihanna, JLo, Drew Barrymore and more, she is in the spotlight as one of Australia’s most dynamic speakers and creative personalities. The New York Times has ever hailed Samantha as “a breakout star.” What’s more? She is also the founder of the Samantha Wills Foundation, which helps to empower female entrepreneurs and women in business (amen, sister!).
But what she’s most proud of is how was able to grow her business: through the support of others.
“When I started out, I was so young, I think the naivety overrode the fear! As I progressed, I feared what I didn’t understand, so I tried to learn as much as I could. From what didn’t come as a strength to me, I quickly identified that I needed to surround myself with people who were good at all the things I was not.”
Through her trials and tribulations, Samantha has found that community and authenticity is everything. And she continues to remind herself that in order to keep your eyes on the prize, you have to remain present.
“Even 16 years into my career, I revert to a saying of: ‘You didn’t come this far, to only get this far.’”
Samantha has many accolades to her name, including being inducted in to the Business Women’s Hall of Fame for HER Business and being awarded the Women of Influence Entrepreneur of the year in 2017, a nomination for Australian of the Year in 2016 for her work in empowering women, Cosmopolitan Fashion Designer of the Year 2015 and Prix de Marie Claire People’s Choice Accessories Brand of the Year 2013. With an attitude like Samantha’s, it’s crystal clear that Samantha’s success isn’t slowing down any time soon.
Be sure to check out Samantha Wills and learn more about her awesome foundation.