I came across this question recently...

16 December 2012

It's seems like neither you or your husband actually work, how do you fund your lifestyle?
Unless you've read this blog from the start...thats a very good question!
During our 20s, we both worked very hard day and night, making silver jewellery for wholesale clients. We earned a very meagre wage which we sometimes had to wait months or years to receive! We both rented a room in a large shabby houseshare.
As you can imagine, we had to {well, Nao had to!} borrow and take out loans to keep the tiny business afloat. We decided we didn't want to live like this, so Nao took a massive gamble {and another huge loan} and opened up our first shop in Tokyo. The money from the sales was all ours, instead of most of it going straight into the Buyers pockets.
We took some more risks to become more independent, selling directly from our workshop in London, as well as online...sales kept increasing! {thank you pinterest & blogspot}. We wanted to spend less time banging out endless jewellery like factory workers, so we focused on higher priced items such has wedding & diamond rings, made to order.
Nao focused on the Japan side of things, whilst I ran the London & online things.
We hired some fantastic local skilled workers such as our engraver and diamond setter to help us, and we have a amazing colleague who keeps everything ticking over nicely, processing all the orders from Japan. Now we only make samples and some of the wedding rings ourselves, and we take orders online, so we can be on the beach or anywhere and still take orders via the Internet!
There are many ways to run a business, and it depends what you want to get out of life really. We don't want to be millionaires, who rarely see their families, we'd rather make enough to feel comfortable...and then go camping!
So, after gaining many grey hairs and a few nervous breakdowns, we are really enjoying our lives now...we appreciate everyday, and don't want to waste a single minute of it.
Its easier to start your own business these days, because you can have a website for free and an online shop very cheaply...so the overheads {and risks} are very low. Take advantage of your creativity and give it a go!

2007 working past midnight at Rust HQ {cupboard sized Dickensian workshop!}

Hammering and polishing hundreds of rings, clasps, chains etc. I gained some impressive muscles{the cycle mask was the only mask that would fit my titchy head} the black clay dust gets up your nose and in your hair.

2009 these were made probably 2 hours before we caught the 5am Eurostar to Paris fashion week.

selling to trade buyers {not anymore though!}
reading books about business. yawn.
2010 after the success of our Tokyo shop, we expanded and took on a 5 year lease for our current, much larger workshop/office/showroom. We renovated it by ourselves...
anymore question? just email me!

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