Tuesday, 23 June 2009

Ten Questions With This Charming Girl

When I noticed that This Charming Girl, the jewlery designer was one of the top posts on this blog I just knew I had to grab an interview with Jackie, the brains behind the operation...
When was This Charming girl founded, and how come you started it? 

I started This Charming Girl in October 2006. I wasn't able to find unique, quirky jewellery on the high street. The only websites selling the unusual vintage style jewellery I liked were American and I wondered if I would be able to make some myself and open a UK based shop to fill that niche in the market. I had been making jewellery for myself and friends and family for some time and after a good response, thought I'd try my hand at selling it online.

What did you do before This Charming Girl?

When I started This Charming Girl I was working as an Administration Assistant. I was then made redundant and got a job as a Project Administrator - then a while later I left that to become an Audio Typist. This Charming Girl started to really take off so I quit my office job to run it full time in September 2008.

Where did the name come from? 

I'm a huge Smiths fan so it came from their song "This Charming Man" and also because the jewellery was centered around charms.

What inspires your designs? 

I draw inspiration lots of places - old costume jewellery, music (I'll often use song titles to name jewellery pieces), fairytales, nature - I love animal jewellery, for example at the moment I stock jewellery featuring birds, snakes, horses, dogs, bears, bees, peacocks and octopus - to name but a few! Also flowers and leaves, peapods, branches, watering cans and feathers. I'm also a big fan of lockets, the more unusual the better - I have lockets in the shape of love letters, books, purses and treasure chests as well as chunky cameo lockets. I'm also inspired by romance so I have a lot of love and heart themed jewellery - such as the Love Predictors, the various love themed charm necklaces (Long Distance Love, I Love You More Than Yesterday, Mon Amour) and kitsch, tongue-in-cheek love pendants (Slave to Love, I'm In Love With, Reserved For and Oh Sweetheart).

What's your favorite part of running This Charming Girl?

I just love being able to do something I enjoy and be creative on a daily basis - after four years of being stuck in 9-5 office jobs it's complete heaven! Knowing that I'm my own boss and can make my own hours is very liberating - scary at times too - but I wouldn't have it any other way.

Who makes your designs and where?

I design and make everything from the comfort of my flat - often in my pjs!

How did it feel, making your first sale? 

It was a great feeling, the initial response was overwhelming and I was very lucky for it to have been successful. It's lovely to think that somebody is willing to spend their hard earned money on something you've created yourself.

What's the most memorable experience you've had running and designing for This Charming Girl? 

Seeing my necklace in Elle magazine! They had requested a sample months previously and told me it would be in a certain issue. I ran out and bought it the day it came out but it wasn't in it and I was really disappointed. Then the next month I was in Asda, casually flicking through the April issue when I saw my necklace and I ended up running round all the aisles grinning like a loon trying to find my sister to tell her!

Have you seen any celebrities wearing your designs? 

Not yet (that I know of!).

What's next for you, and This Charming Girl? 

Just to continue making fun, affordable jewellery for all - we have lots of new designs coming soon which I can't wait to launch!

Thanks to Jackie for the interview!

Thursday, 11 June 2009

Mascara & Mango Juice

Hello my lovelies! This afternoon after my history paper (I hate exams!) I ventured into the big wide world to have a catch up coffee with Lipstick Royalty's Music Editor Catharine..
Before I went to meet Catharine I popped into WHSmiths because Kirby, Editor of Duchess Magazine had Tweeted that there was a free Benefit Mascara with Glamour Magazine and as its only £2 I decided to go pick it up!
Yay! Bad Gal Lashes... I haven't tried that one yet! Also Katy Perry on the cover! There was also an alternative cover with Fern Cotton on it but I don't like her as much... While I was searching the newsstand for Glamour (its handbag sized, tiny, impossible to find!) I caught sight of something that made my heart stop... NYLON MAGAZINE! You can; get it in England, but even though it cost a lot as it was imported for America I just HAD to buy it! Its a special music issue too! I'm in love... (and on the top left of the Nylon Mag picture is the pink and green replacement of THE BOOK!)
We ate in Pret Manger, and it was only my second time there in our new one in town, and my first time eating inside! Catharine couldn't wait to take me upstairs to the seating area, she said it was pretty... and OMG!
They've kept all the old parts of the building and its like a little manor house... I'm in love... Catharine had a chocolate brownie and fizzy apple juice and I has a tomato and mozzarella cheese pastry and Mango juice while we had a mini fashion magazine meeting. We talked Clothes Show, October Issue, Gala Darling and Doe Deere as well as about our exams and summer holiday plans...
I love Catharine's blue wallet she got on her travels in the background... I also showed her my copy of Nylon - I know she worships the magazine and she was so excited about it and didn't care about the price so afterwards we went back to WHSmiths to buy her one. She also got a load of politics magazines (that will be me next year!) and a Glamour because she needed a new mascara! When we left Pret Manger we saw there had been rain on the ground and were happy we'd missed it! However after we'd said goodbye to each other and were heading hope it suddenly started to pour and we got drenched! (I know we both got wet as we both live about 7 mins away from Pret in each direction!)
When i got back I had an interview on Skype with Tita, the Editor of OMGee! Magazine for the position of intern... there were lots of people who applied, I think it went well but I never get chosen for anything... oh well, fingers crossed! It was nice meeting someone new anyway...

What did you do today?