Tell us about your business.My endeavor all began by accident; as I am sure most creative endeavors do. I ventured into a bead shop and admired many of the items made by shop patrons. I took one class that produced a much smaller version of what I now design and create. After many years of donating bracelets to family and friends I ventured onto Etsy in 2013. With encouragement from everyone and with the many admirers when I travel, my designs have evloved to where I am now confident with the final product. Each bracelet begins with a "canvas", I then move on to a theme. Usually, resort, evening, bling, etc. The process of designing can take hours and involve thousands of beads. I personally make each bracelet; all are virtually one-of-a-kind. Each bracelet is special to me, as I take time to be sure the completed piece is up to my high standards. Then I ask myself, "Would I purchase and wear this bracelet?" Each bracelet is memorable in its own way. I am ALWAYS stopped whenever wearing a piece.
What makes your business stand out?The fact that each bracelet is handmade from start to finish is unique in a time when urgency is first and foremost. I do not farm out any portion of the process. Each bracelet harkens back to a time when women purchased jewelry as an investment. I like to think that a woman can wear the same outfit and just accessorize. No two looks being alike. My bracelets should be worn with confidence. Picture a two week travel holiday with just a pair of black leggings/pants and black turtleneck/top and a selection of my bracelets. Trust me, the bracelet will receive all the accolades. No one will ever take notice of the repeat outfit. Top off your outfit with the perfect scarf and you are off and running. The fact that each bracelet begins as a "canvas" the possibilities are endless. I consider my bracelets to be a form of art and expression. Custom orders always take into account each recipients preferences and comfort zone. The outcome always exceeds expectation.
What's the best business advice you've received?The best advice is first of all, do what you love. Desire will force you to succeed and excel. Don't listen to nay-sayers. If you believe, then move forward. Since I do not have employees and space is not an issue, I am able to take my "business" with me when I travel. If I want to keep it unique then I must stay in control of the final product. Some additional advice I was given (not necessarily business) was be proud of your product, believe in your product and do not underprice your product just to give it away. Be wary of the consignment seller who is more than happy to take your product at your expense. If you love your product, so will your customers.
Mark Your Calendar
NOMINATIONS ENDAug. 31, 2015
Final day for entering the Audience Choice Award competition.
VOTING ENDSOct. 19, 2015
Final day to cast your vote for your favorite makers.
WINNERS ANNOUNCEDOct. 23, 2015
2015 Editors' Award Winners and Audience Choice Winner announced.See past Award Winners
AMERICAN MADE SUMMITNov. 7, 2015
Don’t miss our networking event and maker lecture series in New York City. Tickets are available now.Discover the American Made Summit