Accessories designer Suzanne Bennett was scooped up by Elite modeling agency in a shopping mall as a teen, then she moved to Germany for two years to model, moved back to Manhattan, modeled some more and turned to other interests.
“It was quite an education,” the 27-year-old said.
One of those other interests she turned to was designing hair accessories as a hobby. Now she’s turned that into a business — Suzanne Bennett hair accessories — and has racked up orders at the Cynthia O’Connor & Co. showroom in New York with her glamorous flex comb hairbands.
“A couple of years ago, I wanted to wear my hair different ways,” Bennett said of her unorthodox entry into the business. “I went to findings places and started making hair accessories for myself.”
When a friend suggested she sell them, she packed up her wares in a hat box and hit the sidewalks, approaching stores to buy her fledgling line.
Bennett officially started her business in September and hooked up with Cynthia O’Connor & Co. The designer has done an array of crystal and bead-encrusted hair accessories, in addition to those adorned with velvet and feathers.
“With a lot of feathers, you tend to look like a rooster,” she said. “It’s difficult to work with them, so what I’ve done is combined them with sheer ribbons to balance the feathers, to give it more of a tender look.”
Bennett is offering the feather looks for immediate and spring deliveries. The come in various sizes on a U-shaped comb, which can be worn on the sides of the hair or stuck in a bun.
She also does flex comb headbands with various trimmings wound around them — such as Czech glass beads, Japanese glass pearls, Austrian crystal beads and velvet ribbon.
Bennett is a major proponent of the flex comb headband — “It holds your hair so much better than a headband, and it doesn’t give you the headache,” she said.
And while she’s seen fashionable girls sporting the plain ones around town, she has yet to see any done up as glamorously as her own.
For spring, she’s concentrating on the beaded flex comb headbands in spring colors — iridescent pinks and bronzes and pale pastels.
She also does the combs in basic colors, such as jet, smoky topaz and crystal.
The wholesale price range for the hair accessories is $8.25 up to $19.
Cynthia O’Connor, owner of the showroom that reps Bennett, said she has received orders for the line from Saks Fifth Avenue and Barneys New York.