Nunn Design has collaborated with 5 embroidery artists to provide inspiring pieces of wearable art featuring the new Jewelry Kits for Embroidery. This week are highlighting these artists and introducing you to their beautiful creations.
Shelly of Shelly Sells Lemonade
Shelly of Shelly Sells Lemonade took some time out to answer the following questions about her business, her inspiration and how she balances it all.
Becky: What are some of your challenges in owning a small business?
Shelly: Balancing what I want to create with what’s marketable. The pieces I’m drawn to aren’t necessarily what are going to sell at a margin that makes sense for my business so I struggle a little with that. Three years ago I spent a lot of time on pieces that went to six different galleries around the country and I loved that, but I didn’t make any money, so I swung the pendulum in the other direction.
Becky: How do you balance your creative/business/family life?
Shelly: My kids are in grade school and middle school so they’re pretty self-sufficient during the school year but summer is really rough. It’s market season but it’s also family time. Last year I over extended myself and we all felt the stress. This summer I took a pass on the markets and stripped my shop of everything except digital patterns for the month of August. I was afraid it would spell death for business, but we had an opportunity to travel and it was the only way to make that happen.
Becky: Have you felt vulnerable in any way, as you have gained more exposure with your embroidery?
Shelly: Not really. I know a lot of artists who complain about designs being copied and stolen but any time that’s happened to me, I’ve been able to reach out to the person and resolve it. If my work is easy enough to copy, I need to evolve. I’d feel differently if a large corporation ever tried it, but so far it’s just been people who are new and don’t understand that art is a person’s business.
“If my work is easy enough to copy, I need to evolve.”
Becky: Have you had any challenging interactions with customers? What was one of those challenges and how did you deal with it?
Shelly: I see a lot of people sell directly from social media, so I tried that once and the person claimed she never received the piece. The post office gave tracking info that indicated it had arrived on her front door but she was adamant it never showed. I will do just about anything to avoid an unhappy customer so I sent her a replacement and chalked it up to a lesson learned. Now I sell exclusively through Etsy and (knock wood) I haven’t had any trouble since.
Becky: Where did you learn embroidery? Do you have any suggestions for those who want to get started?
Shelly: I like to say my grandma taught me a hundred years ago. That’s a bit of an exaggeration, but I have been stitching for a long time. My suggestion for anyone getting started is always the same: pick up a needle and thread and buy one of my tutorials! I sell patterns and tutorials that anyone can learn from.
Becky: Where do you find color inspiration?
Shelly: Nature mostly, but sometimes I’ll decide on a theme and I might scour the internet for images that I save in an inspiration board. I used to try to force myself to use more soft and muted colors but I’ve given in to my love of everything juicy and vibrant.
Becky: How do you market/sell your work?
Shelly: Instagram is my favorite social media platform, but local markets and embroidery workshops have always been very successful for me. They’re a lot of work, but the interaction with customers is priceless.
Becky: Did you enjoy working with the Nunn Design Jewelry Kits for Embroidery?
Shelly: I absolutely love them. I was curious about making pendants long before I found Nunn Design but everything I looked at was either too crafty looking for my taste or poor quality. Nunn Design jewelry kits are the only hardware I use. Ever. You ask about color inspiration, but I find something like jewelry hardware can really spark creativity. I’m forced to work on a certain scale and think about the setting and suddenly I’m swimming in ideas.
Check out all the finished beauties Shelly made with the Nunn Design Jewelry Kits for Embroidery! If you like her Slavic inspired modern floral embroidery patterns, they are available for purchase as digital downloads on her Etsy site!
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Here is a great little video where Shelly discusses her plans with Nunn Design Jewelry Kits for Embroidery! There are two videos, click on the arrow to see the second one.
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In this video Shelly shows you how she attaches her embroidery to the Crest Tag insert that goes into the brooch bezel!
Learn More About Shelly:
- Follow Shelly on Instagram: @shelly_sells_lemonade
- Shop Shelly’s Etsy site (she is offering these awesome patterns & kits!)
Shop Nunn Design Jewelry Kits for Embroidery:
The items that are Not included in our kits are the parts that you will need to do the actual embroidery.
Shop Supplies RETAIL:
Shop Supplies WHOLESALE:
- Shop Wholesale Jewelry Kits for Embroidery!
Option 1-Kits: If you are interested in assembling one of the Nunn Design Kits exactly as shown in the photo, then this would be your option. All the findings and printed step-by-step instructions are included. Tools and glue are not included.
- Shop Wholesale Parts & Pieces Sold in Bulk of Embroidery Jewelry!
Option 2-Part & Pieces Bulk: If you like the jewelry kit project, but want to buy the parts and pieces in larger quantities for even more savings, then this is your option.
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How to Purchase Wholesale?
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Nunn Design primarily sells wholesale, but we do offer Retail DIY Kit supplies for certain projects. For all other findings, please visit our Where to Buy Page for a listing of online stores that sell Nunn Design Findings retail.
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