Blog

Exporting.....

Very excited to announce that we have won the Open to Export - Export Action Plan Competition sponsored by NatWest. 

one & eight

Susie went to London to present to a panel of industry experts and do a Q&A. 

 

Here's an expert from her post win interview:

How have you found the experience of the final today?

It was a fantastic opportunity to pitch our company to people who have a wealth of experience in the export market.

Presenting can be daunting but preparing for it made me focus on how ready my business is to export and the judges feedback was invaluable.

What tips would you give to other new exporters?

  • Look at every aspect of your business and be honest. Do you have a product that the export markets wants/needs?
  • Make sure you understand the market you are planning to export to and be clear on their requirements, product labelling, import duties etc.
  • There is so much help out there. Seek it out. It will make the process so much easier.

We're Finalists!

one and eight

We are excited to be finalists for the South West Fast Track to Growth Intensive Programme. We are really looking forward to meeting all the other finalists. We also can't wait to take part in the Intensive Programme to help us grow our business - notepads and coffees at the ready!!

www.ft2g.co.uk

Tradeshows

tradeshow stand One & Eight

 

We've just come back from Top Drawer in London. We're exhausted, the office is a mess as we had to take half the furniture to Top Drawer but we've got a lovely pile of orders. 

So trade shows are definitely hard work and expensive. They take weeks to prepare for too. We always have to go and buy more furniture, find props in the colours that suit our current range and ensure we have everything we might need. Then we have to take it all up to London, set up and get organised. 

However for us they are really worth it. This year our first day was all about repeat business. It was lovely to chat face to face to so many of our existing customers, we wouldn't be able to do this otherwise as they are from all over the country. They placed loads of orders too. Then somehow the next day was all about new customers. It was amazing to meet so many people and even some buyers from abroad. 

Now it's over we'll spend the next few weeks manically preparing and sending out all the orders. We are happy and grateful to be so busy. 

Reduce Reuse Recycle

We love packaging! We genuinely get excited about bottles, pots, tins and string. Sad I know, but we can't help it!

We are really proud that our packaging is reusable. Our customers have told us so many times that they love the fact you get jewellery and a little bottle or tin to use as you want. 

This is how Tasha's mum uses her's:

It's a long process though. We obviously recycle everything from the studio and office - it helps that we are based opposite a recycling centre! We are working with our suppliers and are gradually getting our components sent with less and less packaging. It's our aim to have a complete supply chain that we are totally proud of. 

The change starts here and we definitely want to be part of it!

How your order gets to you

So this is what happens once you order a piece of our jewellery online. 

Before you order we are busy working on our porcelain. Our porcelain discs are all made in our studio and fired in our kiln. We make them in small batches, dying the clay first, rolling it out and cutting it into the right shape. These are fired in the kiln and if they have a transfer on they are re-fired. It's time consuming but we love the handmade feel of our jewellery. It's organic and tactile. 

We make our jewellery in small quantities, incorporating sterling silver or gold plating sterling silver with porcelain. 

porcelain stars made into handmade jewellery

Here's Tasha's desk as she's making up some grey porcelain stars on silver hoop earrings. 

When someone orders we pick the item off the shelves and package it up with loads of love and care! 

One and Eight Packaging

We love packaging so we love wrapping up the little bottles and packing them in boxes for our lovely customers. Then we are straight down to the post office which luckily for us is only down the road!

So order now and we'll start on it straight away! 

How did we get here?


 

I’ll let you into a little secret. I recently celebrated my 40th Birthday! Does it unsettle me? Make me feel old? Insight panic? No, none of these things. I have though found I am in a reflective mood. I do look in the mirror and recognize that the wrinkles are a little bit deeper (or laughter lines as I like to convince myself) and the hours spent running don’t tone me in quite the same way but mostly what I am thinking about is how I ended up where I am today.

Looking back over the last 20 years I realize all the things that didn’t make sense, seemed like failures or a waste of time were actually the building blocks to something bigger.

I’ve had jobs I’ve loved and started many things I’ve never finished and over the years I have beaten myself up about this. Excitement at the beginning of a course, only for it to wane as the weeks went by. Then there were the excuses about why I couldn’t complete it! I know many of us have been there but for me it was a reoccurring theme. The bookkeeping course, the pottery course, the online interior design course, the career in buying halted by an unexpected pregnancy – they have all lead me to where I am today and given me the confidence to meet the demands of running my own business.

Mum of 3 kids, wife and owner of a jewellery and lifesetyle business. I’m happy with my lot and looking back, it all makes sense.

This is the era of female entrepreneur. My business network, which consists of a graphic designer, web designer, artists, phototrapher and other small business owners are all ladies (I think to think of us as girls). We are in our 40’s with a dedicated work ethic and we are successful (however you may classify that). This is our time and we have a huge a mount to offer. Can I dare say, life begins at 40?!

 

I’m definitely tougher, stronger and less affected by others opinions now I am, shall we say it, more mature! Xx

Follow our blog as there is more to come from these ladies…..