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Life & Work with Amanda Eddy

Today we’d like to introduce you to Amanda Eddy.

Hi Amanda, so excited to have you on the platform. So before we get into questions about your work-life, maybe you can bring our readers up to speed on your story and how you got to where you are today?
I started Amanda Deer Jewelry 11 years ago out of a spare bedroom in my house. I was working as a marketing manager for a software company and was always in front of a computer. Making jewelry was a way for me to get away from a screen and do something creative. For many years I just made pieces for myself and friends, but after much encouragement, I decided to post some pieces for sale online in 2009. I started out selling on Etsy and used that as my primary source of selling for quite a few years. While still working my day job, I made orders every morning and night and shipped them out from my house. I would create new pieces and shoot them using a little light-box that I made. For the model shots, I’d set up a tripod and shoot everything on myself. It worked surprisingly well for what I needed at the time and I learned a lot about photography and shooting jewelry on people. What went from one to two orders a week quickly blossomed into several hundred a month. And when the holidays rolled around, I would be completely overwhelmed with orders for my pieces. I knew I had to make a choice and decide if I wanted to go all-in and quit my job to pursue jewelry full time.

After much deliberation with my husband, we came up with a plan and decided to go for it! I’ve been full-time with Amanda Deer Jewelry now for nearly five years and I’m so happy I made the choice that I did. By dedicating my full attention to my new business, I was able to launch my own e-commerce website, launch a wholesale line to sell my jewelry to retail stores and boutiques across the country and I hired my first employee. I went from renting a small 200 square foot studio to work out of to moving into a 1,200 square foot studio and retail showroom in less than four years. It was a whirlwind of growth, but I feel so grateful to have hired a team of incredible women who have helped me reach heights I didn’t know were possible with my small business. Our Austin store not only sells our line of jewelry but dozens of accessories and home goods made by small, women-owned businesses. Empowering other women business owners and makers is very important to our brand’s mission. We love being able to offer them a space to showcase and sell their goods.

I’m sure you wouldn’t say it’s been obstacle free, but so far would you say the journey have been a fairly smooth road?
We’ve had some rough points along the way. After I opened my retail store in what I thought was a quiet little part of East Austin, we were quickly bombarded with two straight years of construction. Dust, no parking and bull dozers going up and down the street was tough. We had lots of days with absolutely no customers in the store which is really crushing. Many of our neighbors moved out but I knew if I held on, it would pay off. Having our eCommerce business in full-swing helped us stay grounded and wait out the construction. I’m glad we did, the new development has been amazing for our foot traffic and local brand awareness.

Can you tell our readers more about what you do and what you think sets you apart from others?
Our jewelry is known for being dainty and perfect for everyday, without breaking the bank. I started Amanda Deer Jewelry because I wanted to give women the option to buy something for themselves that was beautiful and affordable. Our pieces can be worn layered, mixed and matched and offer just the right amount of sparkle to any outfit.

Any big plans?
My growth for the future is investing more into growing our e-commerce website. What the pandemic has taught us is that the market for buying luxury goods online is there and it’s strong. We saw a huge increase in sales over the past 12 months online and I want to harness that and take it further. We are working on creating a more personalized and dynamic online shopping experience on our website that I’m so excited to launch.

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