Friday, November 29, 2013

25 Days Of Christmas Celebration # 4 - Interview with Samantha of Angelic Ambitions

Today's featured artist is Samantha, the owner of Angelic Ambitions. Our 25 Days of Christmas event wouldn't have been the same without this amazing crafter's interview!

"I get to do what i love doing and i enjoy every minute of it"
Samantha's beautiful jewelry shop would definitely have you spend a long time checking out all of her bracelets, rings and pendants, but you'll find her interview answers just as interesting! Continue reading and find out how and why she decided to become a full time jeweler, how she manages her business while at the same time taking care of her family and also check out her pieces of advice for new sellers!  

1. Please share a little something about yourself!

Well, first I’m a mother of three wonderful kids and the wife of a recently retired Army Sergeant First Class. I’m 34 yrs. old and born and raised in England, but then moved here to the U.S. six years ago when I married my husband. Late last year I was chosen to be a member of The Artisan Group (TAG) which was really a proud moment for me and it’s opened the way for a lot of great new opportunities for me that I might not have had so early in my shops beginnings.

2. Tell us about your shop – what made you open your shop and when did it happen? Also, what items do you sell?

Angelic Ambitions was created from two things: desire and necessity. I've have been making and creating all sorts of different things for some time now. When I started making jewelry, it was simply something I did for my daughter and myself; but as time went on I fell in love and secretly want a shop of my own. Because I loved creating jewelry and the fact I was only being limited to my imagination. I'm completely self-taught and other than buying and wearing jewelry I’ve had no previous background in designing or making it. So that’s where the desire came from.

The necessity part came after my husband had returned from his third combat tour was told that he would be medically retired from the Army due to injuries he sustained throughout multiple deployments. In mid 2012, after a lot of contemplation and brainstorming we came to the conclusion that my dream was no longer going to be a dream; and with my family's support it’s now a reality. The best part these days is "I get to do what I love doing, and I enjoy every minute of it too!"

As for the items available in my shop, there’s actually a variety of different things. I'm continually trying to come up with new and interesting pieces in order to expand not only my business, but also my knowledge and skills in different creating techniques. I have several types of jewelry which range from Murano beads and European charm bracelets, to handmade items. I work with all types of materials (leather, natural stones, stainless steel, resins, polymers, fabrics) and I have started doing hand stamped items as well.

3. What’s the story behind your creations? What got you to create the items you’re making?

I guess the story behind some of my jewelry is “meaning” like the Mother/ Daughter European Bracelet sets. I know that I have a wonderful relationship with my daughter and I wanted something to signify that bond we share. Other pieces might be made to remind you on a specific event like a trip to the beach, or a vacation in France maybe. Mostly I just try to make things that are bright, colorful and will hopefully put a smile on people’s faces. And make things that maybe they can tie to a specific moment or create a special memory they can associate the item with, so that when they wear it reminds them of that moment in time.

4. Please pick one of your items that you feel is most representative for your shop and tell us what makes it the most special?
"Don't undervalue your work, but be conservative and fair!"
I would say that the item that is most representative of the shop would be the "Leather BOHO Corset Cuff Bracelet". I hadn't worked that much with Leather before and this piece was a bit challenging because of the number of steps involved and working with a material that has multiple variants and imperfections.

I created this piece as a part of an opportunity through "The Artisan Group" to gift items to the GBK's New York Fashion Week Gift Lounge; the pressure I placed on myself was a bit much. Mainly because of never undertaking something like this and also because I had to make 75 of these exactly alike, all of which would be being gifted to celebrities. So as you can imagine making sure they were absolutely right was my biggest concern. This particular bracelet is special to me because it was a challenge which I had to overcome that could potentially help my shop grow and also show that I can create well-made handcrafted items. In the end I think it helped boost my confidence in my abilities and they came out just as I had envisioned them.

5. Please share a little wisdom on time management! How do you organize your time? How does a typical day selling on Etsy look like – time spent on orders, on teams, promoting on social media etc.?

Well... most days start the same, I wake up and I'm checking the shops stats from overnight and then deal with getting the kids off to school. The rest of the day is pretty simple actually, I try to start by putting on an item maybe two per day (usually made from the day prior) and then I spend the next roughly 45 minutes getting the word out about new items and/ or a special I may be having on social media through Facebook, Pinterest, and Twitter. Then I'm checking my inventory and placing orders for anything I might be in need of and if need maybe a quick run into town for a few things to use. And then it's time to lay out what’s on the block to create for the day (I usually try to set a goal for the number of items I want to make each day), then I'm checking my social media, shop stats, and teams once more before starting to make an item. I try to work for about an hour before taking breaks; breaks give me time to check my emails, shop stats again, and reply to or make updates for promoting on social media outlets, and teams. I usually try to set everything down either by the time the kids get home or shortly afterwards and then package and get any orders to the post office before 5:30PM so they ship out the same day.

As for any wisdom about time management all I can say is, "Come up with a schedule that is reasonable, allowing you to work and also allowing you time for yourself and your family". The reason I say that is because everyone needs time for those two things, if not you will surely burn yourself out; I learned that the hard way.

6. Speaking of Etsy teams, what do you look for in them? What makes you choose a particular one?

I look for teams that are easy to manage my time with, ones that give me the choice of when I can be involved. Being in some teams requires a lot of your time and with trying to strengthen your own shop you may not always have the time available that some teams want you to put into them. Instead, I usually look for a team that allows me the freedom to be involved when and if I can so then I can take part in activities, treasuries, and helping others with some advice; because there are days or weeks when I'm so busy I just can't fit any more things in. Something else I look for in teams is to try to find ones that have positive constructive members that support and help each other when giving advice and just in overall discussions.

7. What’s the best advice you received when you first began selling? Also, what advice would you give to new sellers?

The best advice I received from someone was about the pricing of my items; in the beginning I was well underpricing them and though I was selling them I wasn't getting anywhere at all. Then someone told me "Don't undervalue your work, but be conservative and fair." and by far its being told that was a very helpful thing.

As for any advice I have two things for a new seller. First, when pricing your items "Work out a pricing formula that works for you and then stick to it." there will be days you may question it but stay the course. And secondly "You’re not only a designer but a sales person, photographer, and PR person for your shop.". Take the time to make sure you clearly communicate what it is you're selling and communicating with customers in doing this people will understand the value of your items. Take clear photos from various angles, clearly and briefly describe your items, quickly reply to all communication of customers and most important re-inspect your items before shipping them and get packages out as quickly as you can (typically the same day as the transaction if at all possible).

8. What are your goals regarding your shop for the near future? 

Currently I'm exploring a couple of new ideas that I hope will be a hit and help my shop to grow. But I'm going to keep them a surprise for now, so you'll just have to keep watching and following the shop to see what’s going to happen in the near future. But ultimately my goal is to make my shop into something that will be successful, provide a source of income for my family, and to have a shop that people know for quality items at a fair price and a great customer relationship and purchasing experience.


The SPS Team will surely stand on the lookout for Samantha's surprises and we suggest you do the same! We also wish her the best of luck and we hope her shop will grow bigger each day!

Check out Samantha's lovely jewelry shop:


I'm Andreea and along with my husband we create "paper miracles". We make cardstock boxes of various shapes and sizes, but also other paper goodies such as die cuts, envelopes, table numbers, gift tags, coasters and more! We truly hope that you will enjoy them just as much as we enjoy making them!



  1. Such a beautiful write up and you have so much that our team members can learn from especially your time management :<)

  2. Thank you Angela :) believe me there are days when things don't go quite to plan though lol