Makers Series: Amy Driggers of Taxidermy

Meet Amy Driggers designer and founder of the brand Taxidermy; marked by the distinctive python texture in various colors and patterns. Her designs have taken Charleston by storm and the rest of the country thinks so too. We sat down to get to know her better, understand her inspiration, and creative sense of direction that propels her business forward. We are so excited for our readers to get to know her better especially because of our partnership in her brick and mortar store right next to Maris DeHart; bringing fashion to Vendue Range!

You went to Clemson for undergrad, what about Clemson inspired you and how did you grow?

I think it’s the relationships that I made there. I found a lot of friendships that I started there and that continued into Charleston and people have helped me out along the way.

Your line has been on the market for over two years now. What made you finally decide to make the leap and start Taxidermy?

I was really tired of carrying the same bags. I always have an affinity towards handbags. I love exotic skin, especially python, and I made one black python tote and I pinned this deer head pin that I had in my jewelry box onto the bag. I walked around and people would stop and ask me about it. It was by accident, and I thought this could be a business.

How do you experience growth as a designer?

I’m taking it as it comes. I want to push the envelope more with different designs and colors. I would love do more custom shoes and maybe that will lead to eventually manufacturing my own shoes one day. I have all these ideas but I want to focus on one project at a time so it’s each done really well. This season, I’ve added belts, and in the Fall I made these really cool varsity jackets. Most of these projects come out of custom orders to really help me gage what customers want.

Each bag of yours is different. What made you decide to use python?

It’s a rock-and-roll kind of skin. I love all leathers and fur; but I just think python is the coolest. From my personal opinion, I think you can do the most with it. The price isn’t so high as say an Alligator skin which would be 4x more. Python makes the bags accessible to more people, and I just love the look of it.

Celebrities like Beyonce and Kylie Jenner have been spotted wearing your unmistakable python. What was it like seeing them wear your designs for the first time?

When I first saw them carrying my bags for the first time I blacked out immediately. The first time I saw Beyonce in Taxidermy was on my husband’s birthday. He was published in Maxim that day and while my family and I were all out to dinner and I was scrolling through Instagram and I saw her in my shoes. I started speaking gibberish I was so excited. I almost get a little teary thinking about it because it was so unbelievable that something like that was happening. At the time I was still working in my full time job, and I couldn’t even believe that this celebrity was walking around New York City in shoes that I made. That’s insane. It’s hard to process.

As a maker yourself, what continually inspires you?

I always look around. I love really saturated jewel-toned colors. I’m very attracted to that. I like functionality that meets a luxury item. I want you to feel comfortable carrying it while having it be a statement piece.

As your time in Charleston has grown, what are some of your go-to spots in the Charleston area?

I love Minero, Leon’s Oyster Shop, and for a fun night out I love Republic. I enjoy the food/bev scene in Charleston because you can find so many different atmospheres all in one city.

As a successful female entrepreneur and designer what advice do you have for younger women?

Just go for it. I had no idea this was going to become what it is now. I am still trying to figure it out but you don’t have to know all the answers. I still make lots of mistakes but it’s important to take that step that will put you in the right direction. I was unhappy in my job and I started with literally one bag. You never know what it will lead to as long you are pursuing what makes you happy and what thrills you.

Your Taxidermy Pop Up shop on Spring St was so fun last holiday season, what were some things you learned from that experience?

The Spring St. pop up was wonderful. It was all about the bags and that is definitely something I want to translate over into the space in Maris DeHart. I’m also very excited to meet new people and introduce my line to customers who have never heard of it before. There will be a lot of out-of-towners who will be going back to where they are from, maybe California or New York, and they will be taking my brand with them and introducing it to others.

Will you be having any special or unique designs for the holiday season and pop-up shop?

I have some ostrich and python combination bags that I’m coming out with in very limited supply. I’m doing a new design that is a mini-bucket bag style which could translate into a crossbody for day that can very easily transition for night. I also have a new clutch coming out.

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