Heather, polishing her silver bracelets
When I met Heather at MONDO today, she was polishing silver bracelets that she designed, in order to keep them from oxidizing. It is one of the many details that make the process of designing her own jewelry completely personal. Her love of jewelry began as a child, raiding her mother’s jewelry box. She was always fascinated by color and enjoyed accessorizing from an early age. As Heather got older, “the fun part of my morning was selecting the jewelry pieces I would wear and taking time to do it.”
When I asked Heather, now a wife and mother of two young sons, how she turned her fun play time into a solid business, she told me that it started simply enough, after she had her second son and had a little more available time (just a little!). She began to create her own bracelets and necklaces, because “my eye naturally goes to my neck.” Women would come to her and ask her where she found her beautiful jewelry, and when she would tell them that she made it herself, many wanted to buy it right off her wrist and neck! Eventually, Heather realized it was time to make jewelry for others. She started her business in 2006 and began selling her pieces at small, local schools and church events. Now for the first time Heather has her own retail space at MONDO, a lovely space in downtown, Summit, New Jersey, and is selling directly to her customers. She feels fortunate to be selling locally because that keeps it personal. “I am happy to be selling as an individual on a smaller scale. I think about my customers; I remember what they bought previously and I like to keep the relationship with them consistent and intimate. I think they appreciate that, too.”
Heather sleeps with her sketchpad next to her bed, ready for an inspirational thought that can come at any time. When her children were younger, she would take them to the playground with the sketchpad; they would be enjoying the freedom of play and so would she. Although she likes the entire process of making jewelry, Heather says that creating is the most fun and challenging.
I like to think of Heather drawing in her sketchpad, capturing the color of the world go by. I might be wearing that very image!
What do you think?
Heather’s watches: “Fun for a pop of color!”
Heather’s silver and beaded bracelets