First off, tell me a little bit about yourself.
Hi there! My name is Tracie and I am the owner and designer behind Tracie Nicole Designs – a line of Fine Jewelry and Wearable Art. I am also a wife and a stay-at-home mom. My background is in Psychology and prior to having children I worked as a counselor with cancer patients. Starting my own jewelry business was a way for me to work from home while raising my young children.
How and when did you start making jewelry and your other items?
When I was very young my mom worked as a toy designer. I remember watching her work and being inspired by her ability to create. She still remains one of the most artistic and crafty people I know. To this day she does the most amazing freehand needlework, beautiful crouched blankets and handmade bibs. Because my mom was always working on handmade items I was exposed to all sorts of unique materials. My first memory of making jewelry was when I was elementary school age. It started with friendship bracelets, dangle earrings and beaded necklaces that I gave to my friends as gifts. Over the years I would make gifts for friends and family and occasionally sell pieces that I was wearing, but it was not until I was in graduate school that I really started getting “orders” for certain items.
When and how did you originally find Etsy?
I first heard about Etsy from my friend Anita back in late 2007. I was looking to turn my jewelry making hobby into a business and she suggested I check out this cool site. After a few hours of exploring Etsy I was hooked! I now turn to Etsy when I need unique party favors and gifts and I of course have my shop, Tracie Nicole Designs, on there too!
What is unique about Etsy and what about the website do you like the most in regards to your shop?
I love how easy it is to navigate Etsy as both a seller and a buyer. I also love that you can keep your inventory small if you want to. Many items on Tracie Nicole Designs are one-of-a-kind or limited edition. I currently only make a few items that I can create in large quantity (custom orders and bridal parties are welcome!). So, needless to say I think it is terrific that I don’t have to have hundreds of a certain item in stock at any given time.
What inspires you the most in regards to your creations?
I create pieces that I would want to wear. In fact, most of the jewelry I wear on a daily basis is stuff that I have made over the years. My materials also really inspire me. I love playing with different precious metals, gemstones, and heirloom vintage finds. Above all, I love making jewelry that makes people feel special.
What is your favorite piece you have created and why?
Currently it is my Vintage Compass Ring. It is a great conversation piece of jewelry and I love the sentiment behind it…. that you can always find your way home. To me, it is the perfect gift for a loved one who is heading off on a journey. A wonderful token for someone who is about to take a trip, embark on a new career, head off to school or start a new life. The ring can serve as a “guide”.
What do you want to accomplish with your online shop?
I would love to turn this into a full time business. I find the act of designing and creating jewelry to be cathartic. It is my way of relaxing. And for me, nothing makes me happier than someone enjoying something I made.
Do you have any new creations in the works? If so, what can shoppers expect to see from you soon?
YES, I have tons of creations in the works! In the coming months I should have some more time on my hands and I will be adding more fine silver items, hand knotted necklaces, long necklaces, earrings and cocktail rings.
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 update my Etsy shop, Tracie Nicole Designs, almost daily. I also have a Facebook Fan Page (Tracie Nicole Designs) where Fans get to see new items and hear about sales first! I also offer special deals and discounts to my Facebook Fans, so it is really worth it to stop by.