Fashion: Showroom Joplin
Written by Robiat Balogun
CM: I read somewhere that Showroom Joplin began with two young jewelry designers. Is that true? If so, how?
JOPLIN: Yes, this is true. Ali is designer of Amarilo jewelry and Stella is designer at Haati Chai jewelry. Prior to designing jewelry, Stella worked in PR and marketing at several firms and also developed the visual branding on projects for record labels such as Interscope and Sony. In the meantime, Ali was pursuing her degree in business and law. Eventually, they began their own jewelry lines, and met each other by being fans of one another’s work. As designers, they both wanted design to be the strongest aspect of their work. However, after negligible experiences of outsourcing PR and marketing, they never felt satisfied and took matters on their own for their jewelry lines. Initially Joplin was an accessory based showroom and has since transitioned into curating a collective of everything from ready-to-wear, gowns, shoes, clutches and accessories, and of course, jewelry.
CM: And why Fashion PR? What made you want to bring such diverse designers together under one roof?
JOPLIN: We framed the brands we curate around our personal taste, mixed with current needs of our celebrity and stylist networks that expressed a demand for a one-stop-shop, without sacrificing quality and style. Fast forward, Showroom Joplin is currently a collective of brands that can shift you through all different forms of projects – whether it’s ready-to-wear, evening wear, or editorial worthy pieces.
CM: Every time I stop by the showroom, it seems everyone is actually excited to be at work. How did you bring together such an awesome group of people? And who is that adorable pitbull I see when I drop by?
JOPLIN: We firmly believe that Showroom Joplin is only as strong as the people behind it. We are so thrilled to be working hand in hand with our awesome team, who are driven, passionate, and fun. Ali and I both believe that we are responsible for creating our own success. We build our team with this same outlook. This foundation is everything to a business and we all work as a team everyday with this idea in mind, which is essential in this fast paced environment. Aside from picking qualified individuals, we strongly keyed in on different personality types which would work collaboratively best. We are also huge animal lovers. We are those people that find a stray and keep it. Needless to say, we wouldn’t be the same without Taj (Stella’s pitbull), one of three of our regular animal babies that we bring with us to work.
CM: I recently saw that your jewelry line Amarilo landed on the ears of Tyra Banks. How did that feel?
JOPLIN: This was amazing of course. She reached out to us to dress her new hairstyle and her focus was ear-candy. Since then she has become an official fan.
CM: Can you tell us more of the celebrity placements you’ve landed and who you would want next on that list?
JOPLIN: Last year alone we’ve had Lana Del Rey, Solange, Anne Hathaway, Nick Jonas, The Kardashian, Jenner girls, Ashley Tisdale, and Candice Swanepoel, just to name a few.
CM: I love the simplistic and modern aesthetic of your showroom. Was there a reason behind the design choice?
JOPLIN: We are obsessed with the minimalist approach. As designers, both of us are attracted to quality pieces with eccentric details with regards to clothing. Jewelry is the polishing touch of our ensemble. We translated this same approach in the design of our showroom. We wanted a clean crisp space with the main focus on the products.
CM: Where do you see Showroom Joplin in the next 5yrs?
JOPLIN: Showroom Joplin has plans to expand to the East Coast and to have another office in New York. In addition, we plan to further develop into men’s selection.