When he is not busy with his academic life, Ariel Neman works as the creator and designer of Regime NY, a luxury jewelry brand that has catered to some of the most recognized celebrities in the entertainment industry and beyond.
A junior and psychology major at Baruch College, Neman currently maintains a 3.6 GPA while also running his company, which sells unisex bracelets, necklaces and rings that are crafted in New York.
Neman first created the concept for the brand around two years ago, at the age of 18. Taking an interest in style, Neman believed that he would go into the clothing industry. However, he thought better of it after considering the difficulties involved in distribution, manufacturing and overseas production of clothing.
“I was searching up jewelry and I thought, ‘there are definitely pieces I could create that would be different from everyone else,’” said Neman, who lives in Great Neck, Long Island. “I had the vision and I had the concept, so I made three or four pieces. I was really into the design part of it.”
As time passed, Neman created additional pieces and felt the need to show off his work. In order to do just that, Neman brought one of his pieces along with him on a family trip to Las Vegas, Nevada.
He eventually found his way to a trade show in The Venetian Resort Hotel Casino that happened to be attended by the likes of actor Michael B. Jordan and rapper Soulja Boy.
“I was walking around and saw all these different celebrities right off the bat,” said Neman, who was going into his freshman year of college at the time. “I had my necklace on me so I whipped it out and started walking through the aisle … toward the end of the show, someone approached me and he’s like, ‘I really like your necklace. Where did you get it?’ We went back and forth and I said ‘I made it’ and he said ‘No way, where can I get it?’”
Neman’s interaction at the trade show would be the first of many throughout the early stages of his company. Neman went on to meet and build relationships with people in the music and sports industries. Throughout all of this, Neman received offers for stakes in his company, but he refused on the basis of wanting to control things on his own.
During his freshman year, Neman worked on building his portfolio and making more connections. In January 2015, Neman attended another trade show at the Jacob K. Javits Convention Center in Hell’s Kitchen, where he managed to sell several of his pieces while walking around the trade show floor. At the show, Neman managed to spot rapper Joey Bada$$, whom he approached with a basic catalogue of pieces.
“I showed him the pieces and he was like ‘I like this one, I like that one. When can you have it to me?’ He took my phone and wrote out his email address and I contacted him … he emailed me right back saying that ‘he loved the pieces and the collection.’ I sent a few pieces out to him and he instantly wore it at Coachella.”
Neman continued to connect with managers and public relations firms in the entertainment industry. At a trade show later that same year, Neman sparked a conversation with a stylist who had worked with celebrities such as Chris Brown and Fetty Wap.
Neman was contacted a few days later by the stylist, who invited him to present a few pieces to Fetty Wap. Neman was driven to Patterson, New Jersey, where he was able to introduce himself to Fetty Wap and his entourage at an album photo shoot. After showing him a few of his pieces, Neman was invited to a recording studio where Fetty Wap was recording his new album.
“I'm never going to forget that moment, to be with one of the biggest artists in the world at the time,” said Neman. “From that instance I knew I kind of made it at that point.”
From there, Neman would continue to connect with and give pieces to celebrities such as Jamie Foxx, Justin Bieber, Nick Jonas, Post Malone, Snoop Dogg and Wiz Khalifa.
When designing pieces for Regime NY, Neman is aware of the fact that trends are a large part of the fashion industry. However, in order to avoid his pieces becoming outdated, Neman creates timeless and unique jewelry while also creating some pieces that are “in” right now.
Although Neman has made a name for himself with Regime NY, he still makes school his first priority due to the fashion industry being so volatile.
For budding entrepreneurs, Neman advises that they be persistent in their business actions, have a concept that is out of the ordinary and to show people that they are worthy of their attention.
“It is possible to do school and business. It is possible to do multiple things at once. No matter what, show that you are persistent. What got me to this point was persistency. If I didn’t put myself out there I wouldn’t have met anyone along the way,” said Neman.
Neman stated that the launch date of Regime NY was tentatively set to Dec. 14. He plans to launch in Japan, Los Angeles and New York City.