First off, tell me a little bit about yourself.
My name is Sydney, and I’m the owner and designer behind Blonde Beadshell Designs. I’m also a full time college student, avid snowboarder (I do live in Colorado), frequent traveler, huge talker, baseball fan, and statistics nerd. I live an extremely busy life, but I wouldn’t dream of having it any other way!
How and when did you start making jewelry and your other items?
I have always created art, and one of my cousins introduced me to beading at the young age of eight. I still have the first wire-wrapped ring I made with seed beads in the most unmatched colors! After a long absence from making jewelry, I started what is now Blonde Beadshell Designs, when my roommate brought me into a bead store to get beads for her latest craft endeavor. I didn’t open my Etsy shop until the beginning of my second year of college after testing my designs by way of family and friends.
When and how did you originally find Etsy?
A friend of my sister’s opened up shop at the end of 2008, and ever since I found her shop, I’ve been hooked! She is no longer in business on Etsy (thewirecloset.etsy.com), but I like to thank her for opening my eyes to the online artesian markets and especially Etsy!
What is unique about Etsy and what about the website do you like the most in regards to your shop?
Etsy is so unique because it draws in shops and customers from around the world! It really lets you see what is “in style” while exposing so many talented artists I would not have heard of if it wasn’t for Etsy. It’s truly an international community of artists that is very welcoming and willing to give advice on just about any topic.
In regards to my shop, I love how Etsy makes it super easy for those of us who are not in the website design business. When I was looking to open my shop online, an easy-to-use layout and shop setup were musts that Etsy provided better than the other artesian websites online.
What inspires you the most in regards to your creations?
Besides sitting and staring at my beads when I have the jewelry artist’s version of writer’s block, my inspiration comes from my friends and family pointing out designs they like in various shops, magazines, and web sites. I use the color combinations, layout of beads, technique, and materials from their suggestions as inspiration for my own unique designs.
What is your favorite piece you’ve created and why?
My favorite piece I’ve created is by far my simplest – my Endless Circle Necklace – I wear it almost every day! It goes with everything, and I tend to forget I’m wearing it because it’s light as a feather. Also, it’s hypoallergenic which is important because I have super sensitive skin. That’s why you’ll see that I make a point to make most of my pieces from sterling silver and gold filled components.
What do you want to accomplish with your online shop?
My biggest dream for Blonde Beadshell Designs is to be recognized nationally as a modern and affordable jewelry store – it would be amazing to see my jewelry being worn in a magazine! But for now, I’m still concentrating on growing my brand and customer base. You have to go through the minors before you make it to the big leagues, right?
Do you have any new creations in the works? If so, what can shoppers expect to see from you soon?
My jewelry seems to be ever-changing, whether it’s because of current trends or new beads I find while wondering through the many bead stores in Denver and on Etsy. I always have new creations in the works, especially since about 20-40% of my items are One of a Kind (OOAK). Currently, I am in love with wire wrapped briolettes and table-cut Czech glass beads, so those items come up often in my new designs.
Where can readers find out about more information regarding your jewelry and other creations and possible special offers (including additional websites, blogs, Facebook, etc)?
I have a Facebook fan page and Facebook fans get 10% their orders! I’m also working on some wholesale opportunities, which will be announced via Facebook.