When Texas native Jamie Batiste’s four-year-long relationship fell apart in 2010, it seemed like the end of the world.

But by channelling her pain toward a positive venture, she was able to take her emotions and create a jewelry business, Rejected Hearts Club. The handmade jewelry line includes necklaces, bracelets, earrings and most recently, a new men’s cufflink collection.

Since making her first necklace five years ago, the 32-year-old entrepreneur has grown considerably, all the while staying true to her company’s mantra of turning a negative to a positive.

“Now I can go back and look at the line,” Batiste shares, “which is pretty laughable compared to what the brand has grown into now.”

The brand’s motto is ‘the heart you gave away, the heart that was rejected, and the heart that we give back to you.’

Photo courtesy of Marc Mayes Photography supplied by Rejected Hearts Club

DOES EACH PIECE [OF JEWELRY] REPRESENT SOMETHING? Yes, the whole line ties into threes. I feel like everything that happens in life ties into threes for some reason. The brand’s motto is ‘the heart you gave away, the heart that was rejected, and the heart that we give back to you,’ still tying back to that how to turn a negative into a positive aspect. Each piece you’ll find, especially our bracelets, is always going to be a strand of three rows. We’re coming out with a signature gold heart necklace and it will have three hearts, you’ll find earrings that have three dangling accents to them.

HOW HAS YOUR HEART BEEN SINCE CREATING REJECTED HEARTS CLUB? Man, it’s been something to do over the last five years, on top of everything else to add onto my plate, but it’s been amazing. I feel like what happens with a breakup, even a divorce, feels like a death and you don’t really know how to get up off the couch or eat. Being a jewelry designer at that time gave me a special outlet that allowed me to focus, start building a brand and put myself out there more … Since the brand’s been to [TechStyle NYC], we’re doing a lot of great things.

Photo courtesy of Marc Mayes Photography supplied by Rejected Hearts Club

HOW HAS THE FEEDBACK BEEN SINCE YOU FIRST STARTED AS A JEWELRY DESIGNER? The feedback has been a ton. I do a lot of events all over and we’ve also created a men’s line. So now we’re doing cufflinks and I just did a huge event in Austin, Texas, where I partnered with a designer who showcased at New York Fashion Week, and tying into the men’s world is a huge thing.

Photo courtesy of Open Mind Imagery supplied by Rejected Hearts Club

DO YOU PREFER CREATING MEN’S OR WOMEN’S JEWELRY? That’s a tough one. right now the men’s jewelry has been super fun because guys are so simple. You show them an accessory and they either like it or they don’t. Women, on the other hand, are so picky with their wants and needs. If we showcase to women, we get questions like, ‘does this come in this colour? Does that come in that colour?’

HOW HAVE YOU GROWN FROM BEING JUST JAMIE, TO JAMIE THE BUSINESS OWNER? Before the jewelry I was on tons of radio stations so my name is kind of out there, but this jewelry business has been an amazing journey, just putting it out there and getting the brand going. People have been adapting to it very well in the few years it’s been around.

WOULD YOU SAY REJECTED HEARTS CLUB GOES BEYOND JEWELRY? For now, it’s definitely going to stick with jewelry for men and women, then a YouTube channel, then hopefully a book that’s going to be a self-help, how to turn a negative into a positive kind of deal.

IN A FEW YEARS FROM NOW WHERE WOULD YOU LIKE TO SEE YOUR BRAND BE? We’re looking into manufacturing. We definitely want to get into more stores nationwide; it’s definitely been a process, but that’s where I’d like to see the brand: in bigger and higher quality stores.

Aliecia Brissett is a creative and fun writer from Toronto, who loves dance, fashion and getting to know her city. Having come from a single parent home, she was constantly involved in activities to keep her busy; such as her years of professional dance training in ballet, hip-hop and jazz, and her love for fashion and drawing that transcended into her becoming a stylist and overall visionary. Having always been a storyteller, and overall chatter box, Aliecia, who joined Urbanology Magazine in 2012 as a journalist and stylist, loves to speak with the movers and shakers of the industry to get a gist of her next story.

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