For today’s interview, please welcome Sarah from Loving Liberty Jewelry.
1. Firstly, please introduce yourself and tell us a little about where you are based, for example in which country and part of that country? Hello! My name is Sarah Liberty Booker and I am the owner of Loving Liberty Jewelry. I live on the Central Coast of California. Here we are known for our beaches, wine tasting, and quaint little artsy towns.
2. Please tell us a little about the nature of your craft/design based business. Many women today feel that what they wear is often a reflection of their personality. So the tag line for my jewelry business is “Freedom To Wear The Styles You Love!” I enjoy making a variety of styles for people to choose from, but try hard to not make jewelry items that look repetitious, or mass-produced.
3. How did the idea for your business come about? I laugh as I say my Aunt had a big influence on my beading addiction. One day we made jewelry together and I never stopped. I was literally making jewelry to match every outfit that I had. Soon people started to notice, and then came the sales. One girl at my salon bought the jewelry that I was wearing right off my neck! So with all of the positive feedback I thought that I would start a business to see if it would work.
4. How long now have you been established? I’ve been established officially as a business since March 2011, and have been gradually growing since then.
5. How do you decide what to make, and how do you come up with your great ideas? I find inspiration for making things in so many different places. Through friends, books, beading catalogs, etc. But one of my favorite ideas came from an older woman in line next to me at the craft store. She was admiring a necklace I was wearing that I had made from polymer clay, as she has worked with it too. She offered me some great suggestions that I applied, and I got some great responses.
6. Do you undertake your business on a full-time basis or do you have other work/family commitments? Oh yes! I have a lot of commitments so I try very hard to keep a schedule now. Time for work, time for family, time for play, and time for my jewelry business. I have to write it all out on a planner so I don’t forget the important things.
7. Tell us a little about your typical day and what is involved in running the business? Wow! That can really vary depending on what is going on. I would have to say that custom orders always come first. Then depending on what shop I need to restock, or what event I have coming up, I will make items that have proved to be good sellers. I also work on keeping up with packaging and pricing my jewelry, and updating all of my social networking venues that I advertise or sell on.
8. What advice would you give to others who are considering running a craft based business? Start out gradually. I’ve discovered that diving in headfirst can be overwhelming and frustrating at times. Keeping the job that you currently have can offer you valuable predictable income to use towards building up your craft business. Also try to keep a balanced schedule so that you do not burn out between the two, and remember to always have fun with your business so that it doesn’t begin to feel more like a burden than an asset to your life.
9. As this is Art of Crafts I have to ask, do you enjoy any crafts yourself in your spare time? If so, please tell us more.
I was mainly doing beading until I re-discovered polymer clay. Now I incorporate it into my jewelry designs. I know that I am also way behind in the Mod Podge craze, but I recently bought a few items to experiment with that I think will end up incorporated into my jewelry as well.
10. Finally, if people want to learn more about your business/website do you have a web address, Facebook page or Twitter profile where they can find out more? Oh yes!!! Please visit my site, or shop, or email. I’d love to hear from you.
Etsy Shop: www.etsy.com/shop/LovingLibertyJewelry
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As a thank you I will send you my two ebooks 'The Big Book of Craft Interviews: Vol 1 & 2' and you will get access to my weekly newsletter.