Entrepreneur Jackie Ranieri admits that the jewelry market is oversaturated. However, she has combined making jewelry with her love for spirituality to put up her own unique small business in this industry.
Ranieri, a 1-800Accountant client, operates her own jewelry company called Jacqueline Rose, LLC. Originally launched in January 2014, she runs the startup company directly out of her home office in Brooklyn, New York.
“I design and sell handmade spiritual jewelry based on numerology and astrology,” Ranieri explains. “I come up with the design ideas, and then I give them to an artisan who actually puts the pieces together. I’m also looking to add candles, handbags, and some other spiritual items to my selection.”
It was a combination of experience and a personal passion that led the 32-year-old to take a dive into starting a business for herself.
“I’ve worked in the fashion jewelry industry for over 10 years,” she says. “I’ve always had an entrepreneurial spirit. In my personal life, I’m really into spirituality and astrology. Over the past few years, I started brainstorming ways to combine my skill set and passion, so this is what I came up with.”
Throughout her career, Ranieri has worked for a few well-known jewelry designers, including the late Joan Rivers’ line and Anthropologie.
Under Jacqueline Rose, LLC, she offers high-end necklaces, bracelets, earrings, and body jewelry in brass, sterling silver, precious stone, and other metals. The pieces are primarily for women, but she does get men as customers buying for the females in their lives. In addition, she can produce custom pieces based on certain specifications.
She explains what she thinks are the keys to startup success for any entrepreneurs out there.
“I know I took a big leap of faith starting a business at this point in my life,” she says. “But I’m quite courageous and have a bit of an impulsive personality, so I jumped in with both feet. There has definitely been a learning curve for me. You have to learn from your mistakes and not repeat them in the future, and you will always need to re-tweak things that don’t work. My business plan kept me organized.”
According to the newly crowned small business owner, flexibility is a fantastic reward to self-employment.
“I love the freedom I get to have,” she says. “It’s nice to be able to create my own schedule and be my own boss; I like to wear many hats, and I know this will help when I bring on employees because I’ll know exactly how to do their jobs. It will make me a much more effective leader.”
In addition, the process of seeing an idea turn into a real piece of jewelry is very gratifying to Ranieri.
“It’s extremely rewarding to see a customer wearing my jewelry, especially when they say how much of an impact it has made on their lives. One customer said she actually felt at peace wearing it because of the positive energy and spiritual nature of the gemstones.”
No matter what line of work they are in, entrepreneurs are typically up against some sort of competition with others offering similar products or services. In Ranieri’s words, she believes her jewelry is different enough to give her a leg up.
“It is very competitive out there right now. The economy still makes it a challenge because my jewelry is moderate to higher priced, and people normally want to spend less than $50 on fashion jewelry. Where I have an edge is the fact that my jewelry is based on numerology and astrology. There is a big New Age craze going on in our culture. In my research, I couldn’t find any mainstream brands solely focusing on these New Age concepts.”
To make others aware of Jacqueline Rose, LLC, Ranieri mainly relies on Internet marketing. Her company website through which she sells her jewelry is www.shopjacquelinerose.com. She also maintains company profiles on social networking sites like Facebook, Twitter, Instagram, and Pinterest.
Ranieri admits that starting a business in any field comes with unanticipated challenges and struggles. Her experience with this has mostly been in the financial realm.
“Financially, it’s been rough,” she says. “I’m not sure if I was totally prepared for the financial sacrifice. It’s a huge monetary investment, and you can’t expect to see a return on investment early on. I will definitely look for investors down the road.”
She offers tips for entrepreneurs interested in taking the same risk she mustered up enough courage to take herself.
“Don’t be afraid of failure because it is the key to success. Yes, it’s cliché, but it’s something I’ve truly discovered. Don’t be afraid to ask for help, either. Make very sound decisions with your money, and document everything.”
She adds that being one’s own boss comes with pros and cons, but the positives should outweigh any drawbacks.
“An advantage is the ability to create my own schedule, which is awesome,” she explains. “At the same time, you need a lot of discipline because there is so much freedom, so it’s easy to get scatterbrained. I work from home, so I feel like I never leave work. It’s easy to get on my computer and start working. I usually start my workday at 9 a.m. and finish at 8 or 9 p.m., which is a lot later than when I was an employee. Also, you’re the problem-solver 24/7 when you have your own business. As an employee, you can just go to someone to help fix your problems.”
Ranieri speaks highly of the small business accounting support she has received as a 1-800Accountant client.
“1-800Accountant has been great,” she says. “From quarterly taxes to sales tax payments, you guys have been able to answer all of my accounting questions and needs.”
Photo credit: The photograph of Jackie Ranieri was provided by Jacqueline Rose, LLC and is used with permission.