Friday, 13 December 2013

Fabulous Fridays...The Interview ~ Garden of England

We are really close to Christmas now and for once more it's Friday - I think we are all happy about this - so we have a brand new interview for you. We had the pleasue to interview: GardenofEngland. Her name is Clara and she is specialized in cards and jewellery!

Read her interview:

1. Tell us a bit about yourself/ introduce yourself. Besides crafting what else do you love doing?

My name is Clara Sander and I founded the label Garden of England Jewellery in July 2012. That year I came to the UK to live here with my British husband and to give birth to our lovely daughter Charlotte.
I originally come from Berlin/Germany and used to work as a public relations manager. I still love making new contacts and talk about my products.

2. How did you start crafting and how long have you been doing it? 

I've been crafting all of my life. As a child my mother taught me how to knit and I did it ever since. As a teenager I started working with clay. I made my own jewellery and wore it in school. My dream was to become a gold smith. My parents told me not to go for a job in that direction so that I will always have a hobby. When I started my life in the UK I was searching for a product I could attract customers to. So the idea of an own jewellery label was born.

3. What are the problems you faced as a crafter until now? Do you have any advice for someone who is thinking to start or is new to the crafting business?

For new crafters I have one advice: Don't just concentrate on your product but also think about the presentation. It took me a long time to find out how to present my jewellery to galleries and offline customers. Online it is essential to have well lit and clear product shots. The item need to be eyecatchingly presented. In a store full of beautiful things it needs to stand out. If it is well presented, customers will go for it.

4. What's your favourite crafting category? Do you have in mind to start crafting something else (besides your usual crafting category)?

My favourite crafting category is women's jewellery. I love making affordable costume jewellery that every woman can wear to every outfit. Garden of England Jewellery will spread it's emporium to cards and coasters too. Watch this space.

5. What is your main source of inspiration? How do you propel your creativity?

Garden of England - Handmade in Kent - this is my slogan. I live in the beautiful landscape of Kent and ever since I was here for the first time I have fallen in love with it. The sea, the forests, the green hills and cliffs, the medieval towns and friendly people are an everyday inspiration for me. I have taken my European heritage with me but I'm so much influenced by the scenic south east, I'm so fulfilled with the beautiful nature that you will see a lot more from Garden of England Jewellery.

6. Tell us about your crafting space. Do you have a favourite material and tool?

My favorite things to work with are images that I make shining again. With Garden of England glass cabochon jewellery I concentrate mainly on artwork from long lost artist that I brush up a bit and give it a new background and frame. Keeping creativity alive.
I also love looking at nature through a lens, combining colours and atmosphere. You can see this in my cubic glass bead jewellery.

7. So your crafting space transmutes to an online shop. How do you promote your e-shop, which social media you use?

As a former public relations manager I know how extremely important it is to draw attention to a product and to see and promote it from many different levels.
With every new collection I send out press releases to magazines and newspapers. At the moment I'm building my own pressroom at my website
I have regular updates on news and promotions of Garden of England on FacebookPinterestTwitterPicsity and Polyvore. Social Media is great fun and with a lot of interaction of your followers your products will be recognised much more.

8. How long after listing an item into your e-shop you had your first sale?

I usually have more sales after I send newsletters, promoted competitions or on sales events. The internet is so big that it is hard to be seen with so many competitors. With great ideas how to attract online customers it sometimes frustrating with an e-shop. Selling offline seems so much easier. But as a mum with a young child for me selling online is a great opportunity.

9. Where do you see your business in 10 years from now?

In 10 years time Garden of England has spread to an even wider product range and I am still designing beautiful things that make people say: Wow, look at that!!!

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