Tell us about yourself?
Oh gosh, where to start! I’m a mum, a wife, and I’m very lucky to be the owner of Neverland Creations. I’m very creative, fairly geeky, completely and blissfully out of touch with current affairs and I have a very addictive personality, namely to chocolate!
What is your business and what prompted you to follow this path?
Neverland Creations provides families with keepsakes to treasure. I started a beaded jewellery course at nightschool as a hobby, then when I had my son I discovered imprint jewellery (long story, not what you’d think!) I made myself a pendant, then my husband wanted a keyring, then his brother wanted a dogtag and, it’s snowballed from there. I didn’t really put too much effort into it until my daughter was born in February 2011 and I’m very fortunate to have two very good sleepers, so I need something creative to fill my evenings. In a nutshell, if my hands aren’t making something, they have a very naughty habit of putting food in my mouth, so I find it best to keep them busy! I started my Facebook page in May 2011 and revamped my website, and 6 months later had over 4000 likers and a regular stream of enquiries and orders. I’m hoping to turn it into a full-time business during 2012 and joining organisations such as WowThankYou is part of that plan.
Describe your product range
I design and make, from scratch, embossed silver jewellery and accessories, and patchwork items. My silver range includes pendants, bracelets and earrings for proud mummies and I’ve also made sure I’ve included accessories for proud daddies as they love their children just as much, so I didn’t want to miss them out! The men’s range includes cufflinks, tie slides and keyrings, as well as mobile charms and bookmarks for those who don’t ‘do’ jewellery.
Where do you make your products (home, studio etc)?
At the moment I have a dedicated corner of the living room as we’re in a tiny little house, but we’re planning on moving this year and I’ll have a dedicated studio.
How is business?
Better than I could have dreamed! After 6 months of really putting an effort in, as opposed to just letting it happen, I’m now getting repeat business from clients and I now have clients setting up payment plans for next Christmas.
How do you promote your work? Is it purely online, or do you attend shows/exhibitions, stock stores/galleries…?
Mainly online and through word of mouth (chatting to local business owners is great PR). I have attended fairs previously but my items aren’t the sort of thing people buy off the cuff. My main competitors are huge franchises and I know they attend the big baby fairs etc, but I really don’t have the budget for that – that said, I don’t have the time or the need either, which is great!
Have you had any famous customers? If yes, can you tell us more?
I haven’t … yet!
Where would you like your business to be 5 years from now?
I would love to open a shop in Windermere. The plan would be to rent out shelf-space to other crafters and it would be a handmade giftshop. I also have a new, top-secret product in the pipeline so I would love to get that launched, but it needs a significant capital outlay so I need to source some finance first.
What has been your business highlight so far?
The sense of humility that my clients have given me. I work with some families who have lost children and they have scan pictures, handprints and footprints, and sometimes fingerprints. I feel (even more than I did before) incredibly blessed to have my two perfect children and that is worth more than any income.
What one piece of advice would you give to someone looking to set up a business similar to your own?
Keep it personal and ensure you give every client, from enquiries to repeat clients, exceptional customer service. Every single client has fed back that they can tell it’s me, doing it because I want to, not just an employee in a franchise doing it because it’s what they’re paid for.
Just for fun …
Tell us a joke (keep it clean) to make us smile
Where do you find a duck with no legs? Where you left it. Gets me every time!!
Best book you’ve ever read, and why?
I can’t remember, I don’t have time to read any more! I tend to alternate between good old chick lit and murder mysteries like Jeffrey Deaver and James Patterson. Anything that provides a little escapism, I don’t do deep and meaningful!
Favourite song of all time?
“Just like a star” by Corinne Bailey Rae. It was our first dance at our wedding, strange choice but it sums us up completely.
Pets – cat or dog?
We have two cats – I used to thing I was a dog person but I’m glad my cats are fairly self-sufficient (except when they bring birds home, yuck!)
Holiday – trekking in Himalayas or shopping in Dubai?
Trekking in the Himalayas if I had to chose … give me a nice B&B in the Highlands anytime.
Neverland Creation’s products can be viewed in their online store.