Woodland has some very talented creatives who’s reach is worldwide! We are so lucky. One of these people is Sandy Simpson, creator and owner of Punky Jane Jewelry. We sat down, with coffee in hand, at Bella Bean to talk about her creative journey that led her to her own business. Sandy creates custom, personalized hand stamped jewelry that is sold all over the world through her Etsy and website. She is also the original creator of the hand stamped calendar, which was created in 2009.
Sandy is so generous that she has offered a discount code at checkout to receive 20% off your order (the code is at the bottom of the post). This code is good through July 24, 2017. Thank you Sandy!!
What is the name of your business and what do you do?
My business is Punky Jane Jewelry and I make handmade jewelry, the majority of it being personalized. I also make pieces that are ready-to-ship, or not specifically personalized.
When did you start creating custom jewelry?
I started in 2008. I wanted a necklace with my daughters’ names on it. At that point I couldn’t find anything that I liked. I saw a lot of different things out there, but nothing really had my personality. I had just had my second daughter and so I really wanted something with their names on it.
I came across Etsy, well Etsy was new at that point, and I saw a lot of necklaces on there, but didn’t see anything that was me. I found a kit to hand stamp something. It arrived, and I thought, “Well this is easy, what the heck!” I was a graphic designer for 20 years prior to this. So being home and not being creative was driving me nuts, so I had to figure something out.
I told my husband, Mark “Well, I’m just going to make something.” I loved it! Being a graphic designer and a total type nerd… the process was really fun. I loved my necklace and wore it all the time. But the thought of creating just kind of sat there. Then another couple months passed and I said, “You know, I really need to do something.” So, I bought a few more supplies and made a few more necklaces.
What was the first piece you sold?
A simple little disc and she wanted her son’s name, Nash, on it. I can remember it so perfectly. I got it done, shipped it out and I said to Mark, “You know, I think I could make a business out of this.” And I felt really lucky because I loved it, and it felt like everything I had done in the past had kind of led me to this.
How did your background help you?
I felt really lucky because I had the skills to handle the technology side. I started out in college as a computer programmer, which is so bizarre to me. I felt like I could kind of just give it a go without investing a lot.
Where do you sell your jewelry?
At first it was with Etsy. If it wasn’t for Etsy, Punky Jane wouldn’t exist. However, I ended up finally building my own site and then just last year rebuilt the whole thing. All my sales are online.
What’s changed the most for you since you started?
Up to five years ago, I manually stamped every single digit, one at a time, on my calendar piece. But the beauty of that piece is that it’s the exact month. So if you were married on a particular day in May, the piece is made for that exact Month, Day and Year.
In 2011 Country Living magazine called me for a feature. When that happened my orders increased and the manual process for the calendar was just too much. I was in tears, because I wasn’t ready to do all of these. My husband figured out the tooling part so I could produce the jewelry more quickly. This changed a lot for me, and I could produce more pieces.
What are the newest products you have?
I just added rose gold, double clad and these beautiful dainty cable chains in rose gold I think are really pretty. I also came up with little wax seal designs. I needed something that I can just have ready to go, to ship immediately. I also do custom designs, so long as it fits within what I do. I’m always up to see if it’s something I can provide, it’s a challenge!
What do you want Woodland to know?
I want everyone to know that I love what I do and that I love working with my customers to make something really special.
Discount code: VisitWoodland20