Hi! Welcome to Raw & Rebellious!!! I'm so glad you found your way to us. I just wanted to introduce myself and tell you a little bit about me and how R&R came to be. My name is Sarah Smyth and I'm from Madison, Alabama. This past May, I graduated from Auburn with a double major in Rehabilitation & Disability Studies and Spanish. I am a lover of all things new and exciting. I absolutely LOVE traveling, meeting new people, and learning new things. I've always planned on being a bilingual Occupational Therapist, so I love working with people with disabilities, and of course me encanta hablar Español. I also adore all things fashion and if you asked me what my personal style is, I would have to say Raw and Rebellious :)
I started Raw & Rebellious on a total whim. In 2015, I studied abroad in Madrid, Spain for four months and although it was incredible, I came back TOTALLY broke. I couldn't afford to shop, let alone buy jewelry for myself, so I waitressed and tried to save up a little moolah. That summer, my grandparents came to visit and we went to a local antique shop, where I found the most beautiful beads. I made a few necklaces for myself and immediately started getting tons of compliments and inquiries on where I got them! When my family noticed the attention I was getting for my designs, they encouraged me to try and sell them. And just like that, this crazy idea was born.
I originally called my collection "Sarah Smyth Designs" and began selling through my personal Instagram to friends and family. A boutique in my hometown called Shoefly reached out to me wanting to sell my designs in their store, and before I knew it other boutiques came on board. I made an Instagram account to sell my jewelry and headed back to Auburn for my senior year. I was growing to love my little side hustle, but I thought the name "Sarah Smyth Designs" was wayyy too vanilla for the style I wanted to promote for my budding brand. So I sat down with my bestie and we came up with a long list of potential names, where eventually the name Raw & Rebellious was born.
R&R continued to grow and I kept cranking out necklaces throughout my senior year. I graduated in May of 2017 and I moved back home, made a website, and hired my very first employees. Hiring employees was a little scary, because this business was my baby, but I'm so happy I finally made the leap. It allowed me to travel around the world throughout the summer and do things I've always dreamed of doing. After a busy few months, I decided that a move to Atlanta was the next big step in order to grow my company. From then to now, Raw & Rebellious has continued to grow and can now be found in over 150 boutiques nationwide.
So what makes us different from other jewelry companies? That is one thing I ALWAYS strive to do; stay unique. I don't want my business to solely be a website where girls go to purchase necklaces. I want Raw & Rebellious to be a brand, an attitude, an experience, and a style. I design necklaces with every style in mind, created to make any and every girl feel beautiful. I also strive to reflect my visions and passions through my company. With my large social media platform, I try to promote and foster change that I want to see in our society. Inclusion for people with disabilities is a huge passion of mine and I hope to one day help normalize inclusion and break stereotypes in that respect. We recently had a really fun photoshoot where I had a few girls from a summer camp I worked at called Camp ASCCA be my models. It was SO much fun watching these girls flourish in front of the camera and I can’t wait to do more projects with them in the future. That’s probably been my favorite part about owning a business; it allows me to effect change.
I will do my best to continue to promote positive messages and support causes that are near and dear to my heart. I also have been inspired by my wonderful customers whose suggestions have sparked my support. In the past year, Raw and Rebellious has had the incredible opportunity to donate to multiple charities including; Breast Cancer Awareness, Toys for Tots, American Red Cross, and The American Suicide Foundation.
Throughout this journey, I have received unconditional support from my family, friends, and peers. Without their encouragement, advice, and counsel this company would not be where it is today. Thank you to everyone that has followed along with us on this journey. I am very excited to see what the future will bring!
What's next for Raw & Rebellious you ask?
I guess you’ll just have to wait and see!