Do It Your Own Way
(Wheeling, West Virginia, USA)
My jewelry adventure started two years ago. It was Christmas. I had just had a baby on Christmas Eve.
I had another daughter eagerly waiting for Santa to arrive, because he was “going to be a little late this year, he’s waiting for baby sister to come home.”
I had never really shopped online, just a few things here and there over the years. With the birth of a new baby for Christmas, I was NOT going to get out in the holiday mess. So for the first time, I decided to do my Christmas shopping online.
I found some really great gifts for everyone. Totally unique, and handmade… or at least I thought. When some of my items started arriving in the mail, I was disappointed that they were advertised as handmade, but really weren’t handmade at all!
I thought about my own preferences regarding jewelry. I love going to flea markets, antique shops, small hidden away stores. The more eccentric, eclectic, the better! I gravitated to handmade things… especially really unique ones.
So I thought… I am going to make some gifts this year. Screw all this buying stuff that isn’t what I thought. And I began…
My first attempts weren’t actually too bad. I was surprised.
I gave them as gifts to my mother and mother-in-law and received a surprising reaction. They thought I had something really unique and should try to sell it.
I got on the same site where I purchased my Christmas gifts and opened my own shop. I began doing research every day and experimenting with different types of mediums.
Any profit I got was put back into my supplies. But, I still didn’t feel like I “had it right”. Until last week…
I finally found my niche. I stopped trying to make things to “sell” and make things that I like.
I am in the process of changing my store around to reflect my new feelings about my jewelry. I have a new banner. Changed the name of my store.
I have a huge sale going on with all of my old items. I only have 2 new ones listed (they’re pink) because my Christmas baby has stolen my flash drive and that is all I managed to get uploaded!
Check it out soon..there will be more pics. I hope it’s around here somewhere!
Glitter Bits at Etsy
WAY TO GO EMMA:)
This is so amazing! Im soooo proud of you! love the story and the jewelry too! 🙂
Thanks Anonymous! It is alot of fun!
by: Janine G.
It’s so cool that you wound up having a Christmas baby. I almost had an Easter baby! Thanks- you inspired me to make more stuff Iike! I loooove cupcakes too!
Sell what you LOVE!
I am finding that the items that I make and wear and really love are the ones everyone wants to buy, and when I make something strictly to sell, it doesn’t!
Wonderful Shop… Sweet Looking Jewerly
by: Arbie Goodfellow
I wanted to say I took a look at your shop and everything there is so very cute and girlish!
Your photos remind me of being young and looking around a sweet shop.
Love the name as well.
Be true to yourself!
Hooray for Glitter!
I’m always drawn to handmade jewelry of the funky, girly variety, so I really like your things. And I give you credit for doing your own thing. When it comes to being creative, making stuff just for the sake of making a sale is rarely rewarding. Best of luck in the future!
The Tote Trove
Thanks so much everyone for your kind words. I haven’t really seen any kind of increase in sales, but I don’t care!! I like my stuff and that’s all that matters..right? You’re right..it does bring out the little girl in us all. 😉
Best of luck to everyone and your jewelry/craft making adventures!
Emma ~ Glitter Bits
Janine, Yes it was definitely different having a Christmas baby. It brought back to light the real reason we celebrate Christmas. I remember being in the hospital, holding my new baby girl and watching a Christmas Story for the fifth time that day and thinking to myself…there is nothing more wonderful than being here right now. I have a Thanksgiving baby too! Our holidays are really messed up!
Easter must have been nice too..having a spring baby would have been fun.
Tracy and Arbie,
I love cupcakes and I love glitter too! It is so much fun to look at. I like the idea of it looking like a sweet shop. Hadn’t thought of that before. Why not connect with our inner girl?
Thanks so much!
Congrats on both your Christmas baby and your decision to go your own way. Your own way is obviously the right way – your items are terrific. I love the sparkle and fun in each item. I agree about making what you like. I have found that whenever I made something that I didn’t like, it never seemed “right”. As I am now doing more shows, I did find myself making a small “tradeoff” in order to up my appeal (and hopefully) sales. I am still making designs that I like (and often LOVE), but I have branched out and am using some colors that are not necessarily my favorites – just because I don’t like green doesn’t mean that everyone else doesn’t. So I still make designs that I like, but have included some colors that I would not choose for myself. While I still find myself heading for my fave colors, I am including the greens, yellows and pinks that are not my personal choices… and often finding that I like them more than I had expected to…nothing like expanding one’s horizens. Keep up the terrific work.
To Thine Own Self Be True
You have discovered the “real deal”. It’s good to be aware of trends, what’s hot and what’s not, but if you create jewelry with the mindset that this is what will sell, not what’s truly in your heart at the time of the creation, then in my opinion, it’s not a genuine piece.
I have been in the retail biz for a number of years. When I first started out, the sales reps (almost all of them) told me I had to buy for my customers, not for me.
Since i was new to all this, I followed their advice. One day I woke up and realized that if I did not sell the inventory I ordered, what would I do with it? I wouldn’t personally give some things house room. I knew I had good taste and color sense.
That’s when I started buying for me. If I could not sell something, at least it would find a good home with me. And I’ve followed my own advice since then and never been sorry. You should see my house!
Sort of a small hurdle
I love making my own things, but I do need to sell one every now and then to keep up with buying my supplies. Has anyone ever noticed this with your products? It’s such a fine line, I’m not sure how to balance it yet. Any comments or advice on that?
Do it your way!
I find that when you make what you like – your passion comes through – when you make it because it will sell and you are not crazy about it – negativity comes through.
When you passion comes through you shine and it communicates to people when they see your excitement and enthusisum for your art. Way to go on doing it your way!
Thank you jellybead…all of you have some great advice! I appreciate it! Good luck with your own shops and happy success!
I CAN’T … SO THEY DO
BEING A MAN THERE’S NO WAY I CAN WEAR MY CREATIONS. I HAVE THREE MARRIED DAUGHTERS AND ONE GRAND DAUGHTER. I THINK OF ONE OF THEM AND PUT MY CREATIVITY INTO GEAR FOR ONE OF THEM AND WHAT SHE WOULD LIKE TO WEAR ‘THIS TIME’. I FIND THAT MY ITEMS ARE LIKE BY MOST LADIES I KNOW AND IF MY DAUGHTERS DON’T BUY THEM…THEY DO. THANKS FOR YOUR WORDS. HAPPY CREATING!!!!