In light of New York Fashion week I spoke with Wesley Gunter, a jewelry and fashion accessory designer from the Netherlands. Wesley has been on Shapeways for years and shared some advice and experiences he’s had as he’s built multiple original brands.
What did you do before opening your shop on Shapeways?
I work as a Group leader at a hi-tech metal parts production at a company called bozgroup.eu. I first started in construction 12 years ago, moved to hand welding and then slowly grew into higher positions. We’re like Shapeways but for traditional sheet and construction metal processes.
There are only a few other companies I’d work for. NASA and companies like that would maybe make a chance but I wouldn’t quit fully even if I became really successful with my designs. I grew up working so it’s hard to stop doing it!
Can you tell us about what you’ve been working on lately?
If I had a personal assistant woking for me, even they couldn’t possibly know what’s going on behind screens of Wesley Gunter’s life.
I just revamped my first Shapeways project, FabMe Jewelry. Designing all the pieces for FabMe Jewelry was so much fun and because I got so much attention from all over the place, I created and created and created.
I collaborated with Cachicci International to do a FabMe photo shoot for me in July 2014 and I’ve been really focused on other promotions. I’ve also sent a lot of products to bloggers and a few cool celebs I came in contact with all through Instagram.
The pictures I got in return really gave me the brand appearance I was looking for, but in that time I was also creating the Fab caps and shades. I just uploaded them to FabMe Jewelry’s shop even though I knew it didn’t fit the brand’s real goal, making futuristic jewelry for women. In the end I really couldn’t accept the look of those products together with the fabulous jewelry collections – no matter how hard I tried I didn’t like it. So after some thinking I created a big brother brand of FabMe Jewelry called WeDemFashion.
With WeDemFashion I have created room for me to design and sell exclusive 3D printed products to both women and men, create custom pieces on request for fabulous people and even take on some clothing/print design within a few months. The limits are now truly endless for me in fashion 3D design, for art and other cool stuff.
Do you have any suggestions for new designers trying to start their own brands?
1. Use Instagram! Leave comments for the cool people liking or commenting on your posts. You never know what will happen next! Like me when I came in contact with Melissa B (NY R&B singer) – all the things I’m planning with her are crazy !
2. Connect with your fellow Shapeways designers. There are some really fun, wise and creative people amongst us. Talking with them will enrich your life!
Watch Wesley talk about his designs on Shapeways Live here.