Crafter Interview: JaJeJems

Posted by: Felicia

Now that it is spring my mind is on the sea!  Even though we can't always be at the sea you can wear beautiful jewelry inspired by it with sea glass beaded pieces from JaJeJems.  I'm excited to share this mother/daughter duo with you!

JajeJems owners
How did JaJeJems come about?
JaJeJems came about from a collaboration between my daughter Jessica and myself.  Jessica's specialty is
wire wrapped and drilled sea glass.  She generally makes all of the pendants and drilled sea glass that 
I subsequently use to make necklaces and bracelets.  She makes some necklaces and bracelets herself and 
makes all of the sea glass earrings.
Tell us more about yourselves:
I have a degree in Home Economics but most of my career was spent working in dietetics.  I began sewing as a 
teenager and pursued lots of other crafts as a young adult such as spinning and quilting.  Working full time and 
raising a two children left me little time for the creative arts.  
When I retired from Dietetics in 2009 I decided, on a whim, to take a water colour course.  
That was like a spark that awakened my desire
 to create.  
In addition to painting I started to take some of my old pieces of jewellery apart to make new pieces.
The feedback from friends and relatives was very positive so I was hooked!  Since then I have taken courses in
Lampwork bead making and make many of my own glass beads.  I have also learned viking knitting and
Kumihimo weaving and  my latest interest is making jewellery and jewellery components from wire. 
 I am not sure what is next!
Jessica's story:
Jessica also started sewing and spinning as a child.  She completed a diploma in Fashion Design at Fanshawe
College in London Ontario and worked in retail for a few years before leaving work to raise her family.  When she 
and her family moved to New Brunswick in 2011, she discovered sea glass and taught herself to wire wrap the
lovely frosty pieces that she found on the beach.  Since then she has learned to drill the sea glass and 
in addition to making some jewellery herself she supplies me with wrapped and drilled sea glass to complete 
my designs.
What's in store for the future?
We presently have an online store on iCraft, our own web page and sell our pieces at craft shows.  In the next 
year my husband and I are planning a move to Newfoundland where we have just purchased a building that
we are hoping will become a café/gallery.  Our plan is to have it open for the summer of 2014.  We will then
have a physical space to sell our jewellery, a lampwork studio and a gallery as well as a small cafe.
For myself making lampwork beads and jewellery takes up a good portion of my time. Even though I am
retired, the days seem to fly by and like many retirees I wonder how I had time to work!  I still like to make time for
my painting, some crocheting and still do lots of cooking.  Jessica is busy raising her two daughters while working
part time and running a dressmaking business from her home.
JaJeJems Store
What's your advice for people who are interested in selling online?
  • Find out as much as you can about social media marketing, I learned a lot from iCraft bootcamp
    I would recommend  it to anyone who has an icraft store
  • Don't be afraid to write a lot about yourself in your store intro and make sure that you give really good
    escriptions of your products, not just a few words
  • Invest in a good camera and take good pictures, get them done professionally if you have to
  • Be active on Facebook, Twitter, Pinterest and whatever other social media sites you can; a few minutes a day
    will help get your name out there
  • Stay with it; people won't take you seriously if you don't stick around for a while and get your name known
  • Don't count on only your online sales, have some other outlet for selling your products so that you can have
    some income from your jewellery
  • Take part in promotions such as contests, giveaways etc.; even if you don't win a contest people will see 
    what you have to offer
  • Wear your own jewellery to let people know you are proud of it, carry your business cards with you and hand
    them out to people when they compliment the jewellery you are wearing.
    That will direct more people to your 
    Online store.
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  • crafter interview
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Aug 5, 2013 | GalleriaLinda

Very nice interview! I love sea glass and your designs. Once you move and have a studio and space (with a cafe no less) what could be better? Best wishes to you! I love my necklace from you!

Apr 13, 2013 | Craft Boutique

That's wonderful that you share your passion for jewelry-making with your daughter, Janis! You complement each other so beautifully. Thanks for sharing your story!

Apr 7, 2013 | SarahMars

What a wonderful story! A creative mother-daughter collaboration. Seaglass jewelry is so unique, as each piece is unique.

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Fletcher, NC, US

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