Behind The Design
I’m Tonya Cross the visionary and accessory designer of Accented Glory. Accented Glory is a handcrafted women’s fashion accessory brand whose specialty is natural hair accessory and Afrocentric jewelry designs. I’ve been wearing my hair natural since 2001 and creating things by hand since childhood. My designs have been featured on Essence, Martha Stewart Shop, Pretty Pretty Black Girl short film, and Eve’s Pearls Photo Exhibit. My entrepreneurial journey has been challenging and rewarding at the same time. I’ve also connected with some amazing people along the way.
My Brand Story
I launched Accented Glory in 2013 with my three daughters, Deseré, Cierra, and Gabrielle. We are all naturals and before launching Accented Glory, noticed that hair accessories in retail stores catered to young girls and were not natural hair friendly. This void inspired us to create a brand that offers hair accessories for adult women with natural hair, created with materials that minimize damage to textured hair, provides a comfortable wear, and endures natural hair care regimens. We choose fabrics and materials that don’t cause friction with or dry out kinky, coily, and curly hair. We want to assist in maintaining healthy tresses. Accented Glory’s designs are wear tested to ensure they are not only stylish but comfy. We also minimize use of adhesives and rubbers, knowing that oils used on natural hair have the potential to break down these materials; affecting the longevity of the hair accessory design.
My daughters and I also co-manage Accented Glory Naturals, a Facebook group for people with natural hair. Our natural hair group is unique in that we share content beyond natural hairstyles and hair care tips – we share natural hair news, business, culture, and humor. In addition, we host in-person and online events for our group members relating to natural hair.
Cowrie Shells – One of my creative muses is cowrie shells. This seashell is incorporated into the majority of my designs. Cowrie shells have African roots and portrays a message of respect, honor, and inspiration. The shell is the first symbol of money and wealth known to mankind.
Headbands – The biggest complaint we hear from headband wearers is headaches! These headaches are known as compression headaches caused by constant pressure on forehead, crown of head, behind the ears, and nap of the neck. All of Accented Glory’s headband designs are adjustable and provides a remedy for these headaches. Our adjustable headbands allow our customers to control the tension! They’re also great for our loc customers. Our adjustable designs fit comfortably over their locs.
Hair Jewelry/Earrings – My hair jewelry can be worn on braids, twists, or locs. I make sure I close any loops in the design to minimize hair getting tangled. I use light weight metal to create our earring and hair jewelry designs. My customers don’t have to worry about weighing down their locs, braids, or twists and earlobe droop!
Many positive things have been birthed through my natural hair journey, most of which are related to my brand. Before starting Accented Glory, I had no entrepreneurial or marketing experience. With the guidance of my oldest daughter and small business online groups, I’ve learned a lot in the past few years about marketing and entrepreneurship.
The relationships I have established as an entrepreneur has been amazing. I’ve met other women entrepreneurs who are pursuing their passions later in life. Many of us are balancing full time jobs and families while building our brands. I enjoy helping women who have decided to turn their hobby or expertise into a business through my organization The Vine Events. I host both in-person and online informative events, such as personal development and small business workshops. I merge my two passions of crafting and teaching via my marketing brand Strategypreneur™ to share with fellow women creatives ways to gain online brand visibility and convert followers into customers.
I also provide support through my women’s entrepreneur Facebook group Digital Marketing On A Budget. In the group I share free and low cost marketing resources that can be used to promote a brand, business, or organization. I lead topics of discussion and group challenges for a hands-on experience in creating marketing content.
I’m a contributing author to Our Stories, His Glory book anthology. My chapter title is “Choose Life”. In my chapter, I share my journey of self-love and forgiveness and how it led to a life of abundance. My hopes are that readers will learn how they too can experience life more abundantly.
Visit Shero Publishing and scroll down to Our Stories His Glory to view the book.
My entrepreneurial journey has truly brought me full circle. I have learned many things about myself. I’ve done and accomplished some amazing things and look forward to greater things to come! My vision for Accented Glory is to provide a variety of comfortable and stylish “natural hair friendly” accessory and jewelry designs for women. My mission is to be the go-to brand for naturals who style their hair with accessories and love Afrocentric jewelry. My pieces can be purchased online at Etsy, Amazon, and We Buy Black. They’re also available at Milton Rhodes Center of the Arts Gift Shop in Winston Salem, NC.
No look is complete without great accessories!
Tonya Cross – Accessory Designer
Tonya Cross is the owner of Accented Glory and The Vine Event Planning. Accented Glory is a handcrafted women’s fashion accessory brand that specializes in natural hair accessory and Afrocentric jewelry designs. The Vine Events is an organization that hosts informative events, such as personal development and small business workshops. She merges her two passions of crafting and teaching via her marketing brand Strategypreneur™. Tonya coach fellow creatives on how to gain online brand visibility and convert followers into customers.