What is your business name and how did you come up with it?
Wandering Cloud – I’d been uhming-and-ahing for weeks over the perfect name, until one morning it came to me whilst brushing my teeth, when I spotted a little cloud decoration hanging on the door handle of my bedroom. It was a real lightbulb moment!
What products do you sell?
Handmade jewellery made from resin. Each piece has been designed to contrast minimal geometric shapes with dreamy pastels & candyfloss colours which are hand painted in layers, and finished with accents of gold & silver leaf.
What does a typical day look like?
I work full time at a travel company, so working on my handmade business is limited to evenings and weekends! On a typical evening I might create a post for social media, wrap some orders, or reply to messages from customers. Weekends are reserved for designing new jewellery, ordering materials, or making!
What hours are you open?
I have an online shop so 24/7.
How many people are behind your business?
It’s mostly just me – I’ve been making my whole life, but only really started to channel all my creative juices into a business in the last few years. I occasionally get help from my boyfriend who is a graphic designer; he designs all my promo materials & branding, as well as being a great second pair of eyes when I’ve been dithering over something for too long and need an outside opinion!
When did you launch?
April 2018. Before, I was selling jewellery under a different brand name, but I decided to relaunch as Wandering Cloud when my style developed into something new and I felt it was time for a redesign of my jewellery collection.
What's your favourite part of running your business?
Honestly, I know most people really hate this part but packaging orders! I love taking care over the presentation of the jewellery, so each item comes in a beautiful silver-embossed gift box and wrapped in tissue paper. It’s exciting for me when I get an order come in and get to take time and care over wrapping it up for the recipient.
What got you into the business?
I grew up in a creative household with a mother who is a seamstress, and I’ve always drawn, painted, made jewellery, etc. I have a fascination with jewellery in particular and turned my hand to making & selling it when I was 15. Since then I’ve discovered resin, the magical material that can be both a blessing and a curse to work with! Later I came across Etsy and decided to open my own online store.
What makes your business unique?
I think the style of the jewellery is quite unusual – it’s minimalist, but with a colourful brushwork design. I’ve not really seen anything else quite like it; it took me a long time to come up with the final designs. Each piece is basically a miniature piece of art to wear around your neck or in your ears :)
Have you any previous experience or interest in this field?
I have no formal jewellery-making qualifications as I studied foreign languages at university, but I have attended various jewellery workshops over my lifetime, and would love to develop my knowledge of silversmithing eventually. Actually, I don’t think you really need any experience or qualifications to make jewellery, it’s for everyone. All you need is a creative streak and a desire to learn (from a lot of online tutorials…) Endless patience really comes in handy too, not something I naturally possess!
Do you have a shop/website?
I sell uniquely on Etsy at the moment, at www.wanderingcloudshop.com.
Do you offer specialist services?
I’ll happily consider a custom or wholesale request on a case-by-case basis, there are a variety of platforms to get in touch on (Facebook, Instagram, Etsy, email).
Where are you located? Does your location reflect your product?
I live and work in Leeds, West Yorkshire, UK at the moment. I wouldn’t say my products are representative of where I live; rather the inspiration behind them is fueled by a love of colour and jewellery design! There is a lively creative community in Yorkshire though, with lots of talented makers coming together throughout the year for various events (Northern Craft, Etsy Made Local) so it’s a great place to be location-wise.
Do you ship worldwide?
Yes, since opening my Etsy store I've received orders from the US, South America, Australia and Asia, and I would never be able to reach these customers if it wasn’t for my online shop! It fills me with pride & joy to think of someone across the other side of the world from me, wearing something I made."
How do the seasons affect your business?
I’m an all-year-round kinda gal! Obviously things get busier in the run-up to Christmas so I’m less likely to be able to consider custom orders around then, but otherwise things are fairly steady throughout the calendar year. At the moment I don’t offer products that are tied to a particular season but this could change in future.
Do you have any projects coming up?
I’ve just released my new jewellery collection over at www.wanderingcloudshop.com. I’m floating around some new ideas for future additions to the collection, but for the moment I’m taking a well-earned break from designing new products and focusing on promoting the new collection!
What has been your biggest achievement in your business?
We tend to want to measure our success by figures – turnover, how many followers on Instagram, how many likes on Facebook, how many sales, etc. For me my single proudest achievement has been the recognition received from my family, friends, and customers who compliment me. It’s always lovely to hear when someone likes their new purchase, or when your friends are impressed that you have started your own business!
What has been your biggest hurdle?
Recently I got stuck in a design rut when creating my new collection – it can be a lonely business working on your own, and sometimes when you don’t have anyone to sound ideas off, you end up internalising your doubts and allowing negative thoughts to take over you. I also struggled with sourcing some materials as I switched to a new type of resin and had to go back to basics and learn the particulars of working with it. Eventually, my hard work paid off and I made it through to the other side!
What do you think has made your business successful?
For me it’s achieving a professional look to my product photos and packaging as well as a cohesive style to my brand that has helped my business grow.
What advice would you give someone looking to start a business?
Definitely join a maker community! Whether online or in real life, a group of like-minded individuals is an invaluable resource. I’m a member of my local Etsy Facebook group, and I wouldn’t be where I am today without all the tips I have picked up from fellow members, not to mention support when things don’t go to plan.
What is your price range of products?
£15 to £40
What are your popular products?
The stud earrings are always popular sellers – the Luna, Stratos, Cirrus & Nimbus.
Where do you see your business in 5 years' time?
Hopefully with a few different jewellery collections under my belt and a range of stockists across the country.
Tell us a little about you the owner?
My name is Bogi, I’m 25 years old and my full-time job is a trip planner at an interrailing company. I spend my days at an office desk, dreaming up routes for people wanting to travel around Europe by train! I’m not sure I would want to go full time making jewellery for the foreseeable future, as I like the interaction with people that comes with working in an office. That all depends on how things pan out over the next few years, though!
If you had to describe your business in five words, what would they be?
Elegant, bright, unusual, pretty, geometric.
Who is your business aimed at?
Anyone who loves jewellery that is a little bit different! I have a varied customer base, some looking for a statement piece for themselves, others for a special gift for a birthday, anniversary, or loved one.
What makes you stand out from your competitors?
I believe we all need to support each other as small business owners and not just see each other as competition. As long as you have your own style, and you put your products where your potential customers can find them, you will succeed without needing to compete with other makers!
Have you got anything exciting coming up?
There’s nothing pencilled in the diary yet as I have just finished working hard on my newly released collection, so I’m taking a little break from fairs etc!
Please help support this small business by following them on their social media!
Website – www.wanderingcloudshop.com
Facebook – www.facebook.com/wanderingcloudshop
Instagram – www.instagram.com/wanderingcloudshop (@wanderingcloudshop)