The Crystal Crease Saga
The Crystal Crease saga is absolutely insane.
When I created the Crystal Crease back in 2018 - it was a prototype. I made it as a borderline joke. And to be completely transparent - I treated it like one. I didn't talk about it. I didn't show it. Lots of art happens offline, as it should. Many people will try to discourage you- sometimes it's whats best. I was creating art before social media was a thing. One of my first jobs was Artist's mentor. I worked to perfect it until it was ready. In 2020 when "everything" happened, I wanted to create something really fun that would improve my mood. I would wrap my glosses in diamonds and I called them Diamond glosses. I wanted a Diamond MASK! I thought matching eyeliner would be cool. I then created the look. I posted the video to facebook. It went viral thousands of views. I wasn't ready.
Did you know that ppl were calling it tacky? Maybe it was at the time. The prototype needed a lot of work. Products like these do not happen overnight - they take years and lots of $ to perfect. I do know that crystals and adornments on the face has been a thing for thousands of years. Tacky or not, this definitely isn't a trend.
Later that day I got THE notification:
Elle follows my @shureice account. ADHIFHWP
Later that day on instagram ELLE magazine followed my @shureice account - and then REPOSTED ME on their page in between Rhianna and Blue Ivy. Unspeakable shock and joy. They put me in an article and called my look"The Ultimate Glam"
TV Tokyo, Health magazine, and others also reached out. Then a few years later, Cardi B rocked them in her Hot Sh*t music video after her team reached out to me, interested in wearing my work. They literally sent me a DM. She would wear my work again the following year in her Bongos video. (Vaddie in gold) Am I a low key member of one of the greatest styling teams out there? Bc say what you want about Cardi - her styling team and MUA DON'T MISS. And they've worked with me twice now. I love Miss Lapearl and their team, they're humble asf and cool.
Cardi B in my design for the second yr - this is VADDIE in a custom gold color
Last year, I went viral and Nikkie Tutorials saw a viral video of mine (now at 3,7M views) and BOUGHT A PAIR- WOW. One of the biggest influencers on the planet, bought something from me. GAG.
On October 8th she posted it. I was asleep. You wont believe this but a HUGE cup of water sitting next to my bed literally EXPLODED over my head. I still had no idea about the post. I did not knock it over. It was several feet away and there was no natural way that I could have come into contact with it. No one was there to knock it over. I went my wet ass back to sleep. I woke up to 10k followers that I had no idea where they came from. 24.9M views and 1.1M likes. 10K new followers, and I even had to leave my day job due to the influx of orders from going viral on 2 different platforms, with my own video and Nikki's. This was AFTER my CRAZIEST summer ever of going viral on many creators. It was finally time to go full time fleeky after 5 years of having a day job. I was tired of doing both. It was kicking my ass. Every night, I was up until 2am and started at 6. I lost weight. I lost friends. Love life? HA! My most viral products are handmade, and I don't play about quality. I had to drop one, or risk losing both, I chose Fleeky Friday.
Many people came out of the woodwork to compare their crystal work to mine, but not one is using actual V cut stones, (flatback stones are much lower quality, less sparkle - name a real jewelry piece made with a flat stone. Exactly.) I only use the same cut and quality used by real jewelers. Not one is using micro stones and not one of other brands designs looks like mine. (and if it was made before, it doesnt look like mine at all) I make the best quality crystal eyeliner stickers out there, period, to the point where alibaba etc are copying my every move. Celebs are buying from and reaching out to me for my products. I have BOOTLEGS NOW GUYS!! WOAH!
Bitches pretending to be me = i'm iconic (and so are u tbh)
Fast forward again and there are numerous folks pretending to sell what I sell. One even went so far as to post nikkie tutorial's video on their page, insinuating that it is their product.
I cant express how much PRIDE I have in my progress. I humbly implore whatever forces that were at work last year to overflow that same kind of abundance tenfold moving forward. And you know what, I wish the same shit for you. Lets not fuck around. Lets stop playing with our potential this year.
LOTS of indie brands with better support systems than mine would not have been able to handle the influx of orders. One I know of became so overwhelmed that they actually stopped fulfilling orders and then CHANGED THEIR NAME! WOW. However, Ive been doing this for over 5 years. I worked to set expectations about the piece being handmade. I ramped up communication and customer service, and got it done. I "survived" one of the world's biggest influencers promoting my product without a logistical nightmare.
On a personal note, I have suddenly become averse to posting on social media. The pressure to be viral and to perform. The pressure to be perfect. To get the right blend, or the right angle. To be cool or interesting. Clearly I am capable of all those things, but the pressure to do better than last year is always there. I was really comfortable with a few followers. Now I'm at 130k + on certain social sites and iI find that absolutely unreal and insane. I want 1M tho. I am thankful beyond measure for what I currently have, regardless.
I wont lie - I do feel immense pressure. This is uncharted territory. I've made some incredible personal and financial sacrifices over the past 5 years. I've taken risks and made investments that no sane person would make/take with almost no financial support. There is no clocking in or out. There are no rules. No safety net. Either I make it, or I don't. There is no turning back. Im really out here. Damn.
Time to fuck it up.