Meet Patti and Miranda, mom and daughter, the 2 women running Bella Gifts shop, our Saturday Artisan. Come on, take a peek at their shop and see beautiful handmade jewelries, and get to know a little bit more through the interview below.
Tell us a bit about yourself and what arts/ crafts that you make? I love lampwork beads and they are by far my favorite items to work with. I love that each one is different from the other so that it ensures that each piece of jewelry is unique. Almost all of my jewelry is made with high quality sterling silver unless stated other wise in the description. I also do a lot of soldering work, which is always lead free, and like to make some funny charms. My favorite one said "A clean house is a sign of a wasted life", now there is some truth! That item sold really quickly in my shop. :) My daughter, Miranda, she is the one that runs Etsy for me, does every single photograph and tries to promote me like crazy all while pursuing a degree in fish biology at UC Davis.
Saving money is important; tell us one thing that you do to save money?
I have been making jewelry for over 10 years. Some of that time I haven't been able to make as much but boy did I ever stock up on the sterling silver when I started out. I basically kept buying more and more till my craft room was practically full! Something that has actually saved me money now that sterling silver prices have gone so high. This is great because I can pass this savings on to the customer and I have been able to keep my prices for my jewelry so low.
Any advice for others running their on-line shop?
From what Miranda has told me, when running an online shop, be prepared to spend a lot of time working on your shop. You can't expect to just load some photos and let the internet do the work for you. You need to constantly keep getting your name out there, network with other shops, don't be afraid to ask others for advice, and blogs, like this fantastic one (awww....thank you!), are your best friends.
Which part of creation process that you like to do the most?
I love to select the beads to see which combos will work the best. Its fun to play around with all kinds of combination's!
What is your favourite tool that you cannot live without?
My needle nosed plyer. That's what I use the most while creating, it helps me to pull the string extra tight and it's easy tool that I use almost every single time I make jewelry.
What is your goal for 2011? And are you on the right track?
I am always trying to learn more about making jewelry and finding new techniques. So far I'm on track, I'm signed up for several classes!
Stay-tuned for tomorrow's giveaway!