Even after starting a career in corporate America right after college, online jewelry boutique owner Lynsay Spratlen knew she wanted to start her own business. With stints in communications, IT, and project management Spratlen gained valuable experience and moved in on the fashion world working as a jewelry consultant for Nordstrom and as a personal stylist with online company Stitch Fix.
The ability to balance her full time jobs while working part time to start the launch of a creative career paid off and Spratlen learned a lot about the industry while putting in four years of labor before launching Lexie Steveinson Accessories and Personal Styling "Stylish, sophisticated statement jewelry" in January 2016.
Today Spratlen handles everything from inventory planning and prep, jewelry photography, merchandising and order processing. It is a thankless job, but somebody has to do it and make you look fly in the process. Lynsay took some time out to answer All the Fly Questions below...
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WHAT HAS BEEN YOUR BIGGEST ACCOMPLISHMENT SO FAR?
This year, I established my first consignment deals with a couple Cleveland-area boutiques.
Additionally, I just threw my first successful popup shop in Tremont, OH the end of August; hosted by Sweetlime Alterations. Excited to book more events and opportunities such as these!
HOW DO YOU PROMOTE YOUR BUSINESS?
I use a combination of sites to promote my jewelry line, such as Instagram to promote new items and shout out customers who have purchased a piece from my line. I also use my Facebook Business Page quite a bit to promote upcoming events where I'll be showing my line, as well as address incoming questions from the community regarding my business and the services I offer.
WHAT'S THE MOST CHALLENGING PART OF OWNING A BUSINESS?
I am the sole individual that is accountable for whether I succeed or fail (and) you do not make money unless you are out here hustling and promoting your business. Starting a business can be thankless at times, but the work I do keeps me positive. I enjoy giving back by helping others to build self-confidence, enhance their wardrobes and promote self-love.
My business analytics tell me women ages 25-45 years in age. However, I truly believe my line offers affordable and sophisticated jewelry and accessories that are perfect for ladies and gentlemen of all ages. I hope to extend my target audience to include men's accessories by the end of this year.
WHAT MAKES YOUR BUSINESS DIFFERENT FROM YOUR COMPETITION?
I am a one-stop-shop for smart, sophisticated statement jewelry and accessories. I pair my line with a number of additional services such as, personal styling, personal shopping and image consulting. Also, I am available for special events; fashion photo shoots, runway shows and vendor fairs. Additionally, I am able to sell my items at prices that are half of what my competitors may charge for jewelry and additional services. I cater my services specifically to each and every customers' needs.
WHAT ARE YOUR HOBBIES AND WHAT DO YOU DO IN YOUR SPARE TIME?
I love to travel- cruises are my hobby! I also adore the arts and live entertainment. I am classically trained in Ballet and Pointe (dancing on the toes). I have been dancing for the past 26 years. I still attend dance classes weekly to perfect my craft and stay in shape.
There are a number of other jewelry designers and stylists I admire and follow their work closely; Sollis Jewellery, jewelry designer 'Nspyrd by Nay' and local fashion stylist Marchele Davis of 'Elements of Style' to name a few.
WHAT DOES “FLY” MEAN TO YOU?
"Fly" is the epitome of all things cool, chic and trendy. To be "fly" one must be fashion forward; choosing colors, patterns, or materials that are bold, edgy and new. Also, its not always what you wear that makes you "fly", but it is the way you carry yourself. Presentation is every thing to me when I think of my definition of "fly".
WHO ARE YOUR FAVORITE DESIGNERS?
A few of my favorite fashion houses and designers include Chanel, Gucci, Betsy Johnson and fashion icon Iris Apfel.
I consider my personal style to be bohemian-gaudy-chic meets corporate America...different, I know! I absolutely love bold colors and I will try almost any pattern. I wear structured garments that give the illusion of height through creating long lines or accentuating my curves.
IS THERE A TV SHOW, MOVIE OR VIDEO THAT YOU REALLY LOVE THE FASHION?
I recently started watching the HBO show by Issa Rae, "Insecure". I love all the outfits Issa wears; definitely has a gaudy-chic feel with all those bold patterns and tribal prints. I also love her best friend, Molly's look too! Tailored, feminine perfection!
WHAT WAS YOUR FAVE OUTFIT GROWING UP?
My favorite outfit was this vintage, Marilyn Monroe inspired, empire waist dress. It was crimson red and had a matching bolero jacket. I found it when I was 13 years old, at a vintage clothing store in Cleveland Heights. Sadly, I wore it to pieces.
Starting a business is not always glamorous and can be incredibly difficult for an entrepreneur. When you first start your business it can feel isolating--there will be countless late nights and early mornings of research, planning, and preparation. So, it is extremely important to find support groups of other people who are looking to do the same thing as you. I would also suggest seeking out mentors, locally if you can. You should target people at different career stages, because there are valuable insights to learn from anyone who has been in the game longer than you.
WHAT IS NEXT FOR YOU?
In the next six months, I would like to attend more vendor fairs and local events to promote my line. I would also like to collaborate with more store owners to host popup shops. Additionally, I am planning my annual Lexie Steveinson Jewelry and Fashion Show. Lastly, I hope to launch my men's accessory line the end of this year.
WHERE CAN WE FIND OUT MORE ABOUT YOU AND YOUR WORK?
Email: | Lynsay@LexieSteveinson.com