Celebrating Women of African Descent

Sisterprenuer: Niah Young

Name: Niah Young
Profession: Owner/Designer
Business: Etnahs Jewelry

Q: When did you start your design business and is it a full time or part time job?

Taniah: Etnahs became official in March this year, so she is still very much my baby. I am designing full time and I feel it will always be that way. There is never a part of my day when I am not sketching or jotting down notes and ideas.

Q: Tell us more about Etnah Designs

Taniah: Etnahs Jewelry is designed to convey a love of culture, natural beauty and personal style. Every piece is one of a kind; since there is no pattern and the etched motifs are hand drawn. No two pair of earrings is the same. My pieces are made from recycled leather, reclaimed textiles, feathers and resins. There are no tangible pieces for people to touch or try on before purchase because I only sell online, so my blog is useful in keeping people up to date and informed about me and my creative process. I feel it adds more integrity to the brand and makes me accessible.

Peacock Green

Q: What is the inspiration behind your designs?

Taniah: While growing up, travel was a big part of my life. Being exposed to different cultures expanded my knowledge and appreciation for cultural arts and history which inspires my designs. Though initially, my research and participation in natural hair care sparked my interest in creating accessories for friends and loved ones.

Peacock Purple

Q: What is your daily work routine like?

Taniah: I wake up around 7:30-8am check my to do list and emails making sure to process new orders. I organize work and orders that need to be created, as well as send photos of my progress for customers with custom orders for approval.
I try to have all major parts of my new designs done, such as resins poured, leather pieces cut and wire additions manipulated. Orders are off to the post office before 3pm every day I try to work in some type of exercise like running or hula-hooping. It is a great motivator and mood lifter! Design pieces and sketch new ideas late in the evening because that’s when I create the most, it’s been that way since college.

Newest Collection
Q: Any lessons you’ve learned from starting your own business?

    • Don’t expect instant success. It comes with a base of talent, lots of hard work, tenacity and a bit of networking.


    • A lesson I have learned recently; it doesn’t hurt to have a range of products in different price points. Some people only want original pieces and some people are looking for a deal. If you can, have a few things spanning the price spectrum.
    • Keep your audience in mind but don’t base your products on what you think will sell well. The items that I thought were going to be best sellers I still have in stock while the items I didn’t think would do so well disappeared as fast as I posted them online.
    • Most importantly; never be too proud to ask for help.



    Studded Flow Red Leather Earings
    made from genuine recycled leather,
    hand cut and painted (acrylic) with a sealant layer to protect the painted graphic

    Model Sketch
    Q: Were there any challenges when you were starting out?

    Taniah: When I started out I had no money and an idea and I believe that was a blessing in disguise. I became more resourceful and did lots of research before I made any decisions. It also caused me to prioritize and not jump ahead of myself. Even though we are in the economic trenches right now, this is a good time to jump in and start a business. There are a lot of deals; discounts and networking opportunities out there simply because everyone is trying to recover and build their businesses back up. Also in the land of mass production handmade items have a special niche that will always have an audience.

    Mehndi Green Peace Leather Earings
    Metal BloomPink Leather Earings made with a hand embossed
    floral design on a soft metal which
    clings to a simple yet classic pink circlets

    Q: What advice would you give anyone venturing into starting their own business? 

    Taniah: DO IT!! Research your niche and target audience, so you will stay informed and remain relevant. Make sure you choose something you love, so you will never have to work a day in your life.

    Etnahs Jewelry
    ~ stay Authentic. Beautiful and Free.~
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    Are you an woman entrepreneur, we would like to know about your business and get a fill of a day in your heels. This feature is for you. 
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