I was recently introduced to fellow jewelry designer Erin, who hails from Toronto Canada and is the designer behind Sugar Fire Jewelry. I have to admit, though she’s relatively new (it’s her first year of business) I’m impressed with her business sensibility as well as her clear grasp of who she is as an artist. The following is an interview with Erin. Enjoy!
1. What inspired you to become an independent business owner?
I love creating beautiful works of art and having an outlet to express my creativity. My day job is working as an ecologist at an engineering firm, which works the scientist side of my brain (and pays the bills!) but I needed to find something to work the artist side as well.
2. What have you found to be the easiest part of beginning your new business and what has been the most difficult?
The easiest part of starting up a new business is spending money! I have had fun buying all sorts of tools, supplies, books, dvd’s… the list goes on! The hardest part of starting up a business (besides the financial loss that comes with all that spending) is the learning curve. Pretty soon, I’m sure the world of press releases, press kits, websites, online shopping carts, light tents, photoshop and consignment contracts will all be second nature to me, but at first it is a little overwhelming!
3. Explain what skills you have felt you have that have been absolutely necessary.
I have a fairly thick skin and don’t take rejection too personally. That is a necessary trait for new artisans, in my experience. For every 9 stores that aren’t interested in your products there will be 1 that loves it all and is a great embassador for your business.
4. How have you felt you have been successful so far?
I have been pretty successful for my first year in business. My jewellery is sold in a store in Toronto called The Purple Thumb (1020 Queen Street W.) and I have had great success there. I also sell directly off my website (www.sugarfirejewellery.com) and am looking forward to entering a few craft shows this fall, just in time for the Christmas season.
5. What are some of your goals for the future.
My long-term goal is to be able to retire from my day job and sell jewellery full-time. Other goals are to gain a wider audience by selling my jewellery at several stores in Canada and the US. At some point in my career it would be fun to open my own studio/shop and sell jewellery and have workshops to teach a range of crafts to children and adults.
Enameled Copper Necklace-White Robin, $40
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