KNOXVILLE, Tenn. (WATE) - A designer who grew up in Knoxville now has celebrities like Blake Lively and Angelina Jolie wearing her jewelry. When you meet Diana Warner, you realize she is down to earth yet fearless - a combination that spells success.
It's always a treat to walk into the Diana Warner Studio. Everyone gets a warm welcome. It's an important part of who she is.
"When I got into this business, I just wanted to make sure that every woman, no matter their height or lack of, or shape or size, felt really important and really beautiful and I think it's just something I developed over time," said Warner.
Diana Warner Studio catches the eye
Every corner of the Diana Warner Studio catches the eye, from delicate necklaces to more opulent designs, crystals for strength and good luck, and special pieces with a strong message for people fighting cancer.
"These are the cancer necklaces. You can do all different chains and sizes. We can also put them on bracelets," she said.
Warner is a hometown success story, a Farragut High School graduate who went on to the University of Tennessee with a passion for painting. Making jewelry was a hobby back then, but that's what got her discovered.
Hometown success story
"I was actually working at the Knoxville Museum of Art when I was in art school at the University of Tennessee. I was helping with an amazing artist and the director, I guess, saw my earrings and she was hysterical, grabbed my hand walked me straight to the gift shop and introduced me and said 'we want to sell your earrings,'" said Warner. "All of a sudden, the Museum of Art wanted to buy them, then Obligato, then store after store, and then Marie Claire featured one of my necklaces in a magazine."
She opened a shop in New York City, where she caught the attention of the stylist for the hit television series "Gossip Girl."
"[I] became their go-to accessories and jewelry designer for the next five and a half seasons, which was incredible," Warner said.
'Gossip Girl' connection
Sales soared. Hundreds of stores carried Diana Warner's jewelry. She decided to open a store in Knoxville five and a half years ago, offering not only her signature jewelry but all kinds of clothing from Vol Orange blouses to gorgeous gowns available in more than 100 colors.
Always finding new outlets, Warner is also branching out into the home design business, just coming together at her Knoxville studio.
You feel her compassionate side when you're with Warner one-on-one, but if your paths don't happen to cross, be inspired by Warner's inspiration on Instagram, encouraging women to live their best lives and truly celebrate each other.
"Getting to a place where you can rise together and finding that tight group of people that are willing to do that with you and lay aside egos and lay aside competitiveness and just rise together, it's so possible," said Warner.
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