Today in Soul Sister Scoop: Childhood Hobby to Savvy Business we get to know jewelry designer, April Soderstrom a little better.She is a great example of how your childhood hobby can lead to creating your savvy business! Her pieces have been featured in InStyle and People StyleWatch magazine. April turned her childhood hobby into a creative and successful business. Be sure to read right to the end to see April’s pieces and to get two exciting opportunities from me!
Today she shares a little of her passion with us, gives us some great tips to remember and gets real about what it’s really like to be a small business owner.
I first met April at our first Pilates with Purpose event last Fall. And since then I’ve fallen in-love with her jewelry. I simply couldn’t wait to introduce you ladies to April and her collection!
Let’s dive right in shall we?
Hanneke: How did you get into the jewelry making business?
April: I’ve always loved jewelry and photos from my childhood can attest to the fact that by age two I was already loading the bangles up to my elbows and by five I’d started wearing my Mrs. Potato Head earrings around the house. I used to sell seed bead necklaces in middle school for $3 a piece, they used to take me forever! Thankfully my understanding of time+cost =price has grown with age.
In 2011 I officially started April Soderstrom Jewelry. One of my closest friends works in accessories PR and had been urging me take my hobby seriously. I finally stuck my toe in the water, got a small website up and running, started only wearing my jewelry, and saw things really start to come together in about a year and a half.
H: Your pieces are so beautiful and you make them yourself! How do you spark your creativity?
A: Thank you! I love the materials…the gemstones, chains, beads, etc. If I find something I’m instantly drawn to, I buy it, and figure it out later. I’ve come to realize this is how my creativity works best – not to mention the fastest. My ideas click when everything I need is arms distance away, so if I happen to lose a little money here and there buying too many materials, it’s all gained back in making my creation time faster.
H: What’s been your biggest success so far?
A: The moments we small business owners live for! Last fall I was inducted into the Rockford High School Hall of Fame. I had been voted most artistic by my graduating class of around 600 students so it was really a special moment to find out that 10+ years later the Board of Education in my Michigan hometown had been following my career closely and thought I deserved the Hall of Fame honor. There was an entire weekend of events and activities surrounding the ceremony. I spent a day talking with students, was honored at a football game (not quite homecoming queen but I’ll take it!), and there was a beautiful dinner event to top it off. I was on cloud nine the entire weekend and came back to Boston with a renewed energy for my business, my art, and an even better appreciation for where it all came from.
H: What do you love most about working for yourself?
A: I love the project of owning a small business. Yes, it’s exciting to hit a goal or check something off the to do list, but I really enjoy the process and planning along the way. Watching my company grow from a shoebox of materials to an entire studio full of tools, stones, and all things jewelry has been incredibly rewarding and there’s still so much more to do!
H: What’s one little tip you’d give anyone who wants to start their own business?
A: Figure out what you love to do, what your hobbies are, and how you like to spend your free time…and if you can translate one of those things into a way to make a living you’re going to be starting on the right track.
I love April’s last answer – this is part of what I do with my clients in our coaching sessions. We dive back to childhood hobbies and activities they loved. Somewhere in there is the answer to what you’ll be doing next with your career! Pay close attention to those memories, they’ll lead you to your next adventure!
Now I’d love to hear from you in the comments below: What did you love to do when you were younger? Would you or did you also turn it into your business? Leave a comment below and tell us all about it. Be sure to check out April’s jewelry here, I absolutely adore the featherweight earrings.
Two exciting opportunities just for you:
Are you craving to start your own business, but not quite sure how? I’ll be starting a little mastermind group for women like you in the Fall. This group will help you tap into your own creativity, provide support and advice of how to get your idea off the ground and into the world. Email me at firstname.lastname@example.org if you’re interested and want more information on this. (note this will be an online group, so you can live anywhere in the world and join in the fun!)
Are you feeling stuck and want to transition into a different career? I am here to help you navigate professional and life transitions. Email me at email@example.com to take advantage of my FREE consultation to help you make that big leap and land your dream job! Hit reply to book your session now. ( You can be anywhere in the world to take advantage of this.)