Welcome to the first of many of our new series of guest interviews! We’ve got a ton of amazing, inspirational small business owners, artists & creatives lined up which is so exciting!
We have the fabulous Julie from Shadow & Line as our first guest. Shadow & Line are a contemporary jewellery business, handmade in Liverpool.
It’s so lovely to have you as our first ever guest interview on the Olive Can Fly blog!
We are so happy to have you on our virtual sofa chatting about all things Shadow & Line. You were one of the first people we met when Olive Can Fly began trading and you’ve been such a great support to us and many other traders.
Let’s dive right in and get nosy!
Why did you decide to become a business owner and when did you start your business?
It was during the pandemic really, I was home-schooling my two boys and making a few pieces of jewellery in my kitchen. I basically realised that I had too much just for me, so thought let’s go for it! The business started in Summer 2020.
Shadow & Line is a great name, what’s the story behind the name?
Thank you! I take a lot of inspiration from urban architecture, shadows and reflections. I discover new shapes and textures from visiting different places (as well as familiar ones) and taking lots of photographs. The name simply comes from two of my main inspirations!
Can you tell us some of the highlights of being a small business owner?
The flexibility of working around family life is great, I’m lucky to have my workshop at home, so I can go in there at 9pm if I feel like it!
I can make all my own decisions without having to ask anyone else because I’m my own boss👌🏻 and I can decide what to do each day depending on how I’m feeling.
What’s been your greatest challenge?
There have been a few of course, but I think it links to the previous question and the challenge is juggling and prioritising everything; from making to marketing, from the photography to managing the budgets, from updating the website to packaging and doing the post office run!
This might be like asking what’s your favourite child or pet, but do you have a personal favourite piece that you make?
Ooh that’s a tough one…I do love making the stacking ring sets and gemstone rings! I also love making statement rings using larger stones because each one is unique.
What’s your best seller?
The Double Circle Pendant has been a best seller from the start, as well as the Beaded Circle Earrings; the 2mm Stacking Rings are also really popular.
Tell us about a new line you’re working on.
I’m always working on a few new pieces! The Fidget Collection is coming along nicely with two rings, earrings and a bangle.. I just need to finish designing the pendant now….
Do you take orders for custom pieces alongside what’s in the online shop?
Yes I do, sometimes my customers ask for a different version of a collection piece – making something a little bigger, or finishing with a different texture for example, which I’m more than happy to do.
I also take brand new commissions from customers, I just ask that people get in touch and we can start to chat things through, with absolutely no pressure at all.
Any advice for new starters?
I think the best advice is to just go for it, and if things don’t go your way to begin with, then learn to adapt and try again! Ask others around you for advice, I used to reach out to other jewellers and small biz owners all the time when I was starting out, and still do now to be honest!!
Anyone who knows you knows you love a market! Where can we see your gorgeous pieces in person?
Ooh yeah I do love a market! My next one is at Calderstones Mansion House on Saturday 29th April, then on Saturday 6th May at Penny Lane Church with the fab Good Market. I’m also mega excited to be trading at Pop-Up at the Palm House, Sefton Park, in May this year too👏🏻
Shadow & Line can be contacted via the links below.