Today, the lovely Ashlee from Raptor Jewelry is here to share her fantastic story with us! Her jewelry line is amazing and I am so delighted to have her on the blog today! I don’t know about you guys, but I am getting more an more inspired with every interview! Let’s give Ashlee a warm welcome!
Hi there, My names Ashlee Hatcher and I’m the owner and designer of Raptor Jewelry. I started my company about a year and half ago and It has been quite the ride. I went to fashion school at FIDM and my love for fashion was something that always stayed with me. I have been designing jewelry and particularly feather earrings for close to ten years but my company is just now beginning to blossom. For my 23rd birthday a couple of my friends designed the Raptor logo and bought the domain name. The gift spoke volumes to me and made me feel as if the dream was possible… And so it began! I truly love what I do and have landed my product on the ears and necks of celebrities such as Steven Tyler, Randy Jackson, Eva Longoria, Felicity Huffman, and Hannah Simone. It’s now being sold in close to 50 boutiques around Southern California as well as a couple in South Dakota and Utah! For you online viewers that cant make it to a store make sure to check out my website www.raptorjewelry.com. And lets not forget the slew of social media sites! Make sure to follow “Raptor Jewelry” on facebook, blog, twitter, pinterest, and instagram! I want everyone to know about Raptor, love Raptor, and be satisfied with the product. Feel free to contact me for custom orders or just to share your thoughts. Thank you to all those that support and inspire me.
3 things you’ve learned about yourself from crafting?
The first thing I learned is that sometimes you can think too much, your brain can actually get in the way. I have to let the creativity flow strictly between my heart and hands…..they leave me out completely on occasion. I suppose thats why its such a release for me, It’s part of the way I expel love and who I am. I’m just gifted that I get to express that and make people happy.
Throughout the growth of my company I’ve also learned that we all make mistakes. Learn to laugh at yourself if you make something thats kinda ugly. Life is just trial and error!Lastly I learned that it is worth the extra $10 to get the good top coat, or else I’m repainting chipped nails every other day
3 ways you stay inspired?
My girlfriends all have a different sense of style, so I often think of them and try to design for each one of them. I figure that if I keep it diverse I can keep everyone in something that suites them.
Photos! I could spend a good hour on Pinterest just browsing around looking at fashion photos, gardening, travel, and even the humor section. Growing up, my mother always used this analogy that we all have a basket on our arm in life and the more we put in that basket the more we can take out later when we need it. I just try to fill my basket (my mind) with as many beautiful images and good things as I can.
Good Tunes are a huge motivator. Your mind sort of escapes and gets lost in the music and when your finished creating you can almost see the influence from the music you listen too.
3 things you’ve learned from being your own boss?
You must stay disciplined. I will say that first because it’s quite often the most challenging.
Give sometimes, because giving feels good to you and to the person receiving.
Happy boss means good product, unhappy boss means bad product. Your emotions are very important and YOU are very important. Allow yourself time to do the things that keep your body, mind, and soul healthy.
3 things you enjoy the most about what you do?
Well, I never have to worry about running out of jewelry, thats always nice.I get to make something that I know someone, somewhere will love and where with pride.
I get to make my own hours, which is great. Yet this goes back to my answer to #1 in the last question, It can get tricky so I must stay focused.
3 of your favorite items currently in your shop?
My 24k Gold dipped shark teeth on 36inch doubled up, gold plated chain. I just love it! I have seen girls pair it with everything from a silk dress, to a bathing suit, to a raggedy ACDC shirt. Something that versatile is a must have in everyone girls wardrobe.
Baby Dreamweaver earrings! They can just jazz up a boring day or a boring outfit.
The Tibetan Collection is my newest line! I remake tibetan pendants into different styles of necklaces and I just love the edgy quality they have. Great pops of color and a fun accessory for spring.
3 words of wisdom for others starting out in selling their crafts on online?
Stay organized stay organized. There will come a day when you need that receipt, file, or phone number your thinking about throwing away. My website recently got hacked and if it wasn’t for a great web designer and the proper saving of my work..it would be in shambles.
Make sure you have good images of your product! People like to know what they’re getting and the more they see the more they’ll like it.
Stay humble and aware of your blessings! Gratitude is one of the best feelings in the world if you can just sit in it, and stay truly grateful for what Gods done and will continue to do in your life.