Designer Areeayl Goodwin’s earrings are so much more than jewelry, each pair tells a story and they’re a celebrity favorite that’s been worn by Beyoncé, Tracee Ellis Ross, Indya Moore, and more. Each piece comes with a backstory or purpose, which shows that fashion can be a powerful way to tell a story.
Although she started selling jewelry from a shoebox at the age of 16 before attending Howard University, which she calls a “fashion-conscious campus” and selling her pieces there, her love for jewelry began during her childhood. She recalled to Vogue that she would admire earring hooks while visiting craft stores with her mom and that’s when she learned that people made jewelry. Her mom also taught her how to weld and solder metal, but she taught herself the rest.
Her earliest designs were outlines of a woman’s silhouette, which she still uses in her line. And her work now conveys deeper messages, “My art has grown with me on a spiritual level,” Goodwin says. “Now, I see more of a purpose with it.”
The inspiration comes from nature, using materials like cowrie shells, and she hopes that the wearer will get a sense of calmness.
Perhaps her biggest accomplishment, was Beyoncé wearing her earrings in the “Black Is King” video this year. “I am grateful my work is included in such a love letter,” she said of the project. “There is no other place I’d rather be in this time and in history.”
Moving forward she wants her work to ignite conversations and she sees fashion as “spiritual”.