For Karla and Diamond Styles, the community fuels their entrepreneurial endeavors. Karla is the founder of Bumswag Million, a line of customizable wearable art, and Diamond is the founder of Earth’s Eleven Shop, an herbal supplement brand. Karla’s hand-painted designs are landing on everything from Telfar bags to t-shirts, and Diamond’s herbal supplements are helping to remedy everything from backaches to fatigue.
The couple first met on Twitter in 2011, and quit their day jobs in 2015, the same year they tied the knot.
“I was doing hair at the time, but I wanted to start my own healing business. Karla was like, I know I want to have a brand, I know what I want it to be called, but I don’t know what I want it to look like,” Diamond, 30, tells The Bridge during a recent interview with the couple.
A mixture of questions and creative know-how became the perfect cocktail for bringing their visions to life. Although the couple creates from two very different landscapes, they’re still unified. “She keeps us organized. I keep us on task. I push her. I give her creative ideas, and she does the same thing for me,” Karla says. They set up shop in their NE D.C. home, where they have two desks that face one another to help facilitate a supportive work environment, Diamond notes.
“Although we have two separate businesses we both have the same vision and goals which keeps us dedicated to encouraging each other to strive forward,” Karla says, 30.
Karla came up with the name Bumswag Million while a student at School Without Walls in 2010. “It was based on the way that I dress because my family would always say, what do you have on today you look like a bum. During the time, my favorite movie was “Slumdog Millionaire,” so I thought why not put them together,” says Karla. “It just means using what you have to get to where you want to go,” she continues.
Karla meets with clients when she’s coming up with designs, where she asked a series of questions that help to direct her creation. Now, her portfolio of work includes working with fellow DMV artists Rikasso, Chris Pyrate, and Malik Jarrett the founder of E.A.T clothing.
“I would say that Karla is a very intuitive creator,” Diamond says. When Karla meets with clients ahead of beginning work she asks a series of questions about, “their interests, favorite colors or images that relate to them, previous pieces of hers that caught their eye?” Diamond says. These questions then help to fuel her creative process.
Diamond is equally dialed into her work helping to facilitate healing through her herbal supplements. She landed on the name Earth’s Eleven, as a nod to Karla, who’s an earth sign (Capricorn), and her birthday lands on January, 11th. Although Earth’s Eleven was formally birthed in 2015, it was rebirthed during the Pandemic in 2020 on Juneteenth. “I thought the world is sick right now, now is your time,” Diamond says, explaining the necessity of her business and the timing of its comeback.
“The support was amazing because it was really good to see so many people take their health and wellness seriously in a time where illness was at an all-time high,” Diamond continues. Currently, Earth’s Eleven offers three herbal supplements that target, gut health, immune health, and stress relief.
Karla and Diamond note, that during the pandemic they both saw a substantial financial increase in their businesses, which they needed to continue bringing their ideas to life. The couple intends to continue to lean into their most captive audience, the community, as they continue to inspire through design and facilitate healing in a post-pandemic D.C.