Debbie Turk of EarlyBirdJewels has been an Etsy member since 2009. Her Esty shop is a 5 star rate shop that boasts over 1,000 sales and 1400 admirers. Debbie has become known in the Etsy community through her shop, now I’d like to give you all the opportunity to meet Debbie as well. I asked Debbie to share her story with all of us so we can learn a little bit more her.
Can you share with us a little about your personal story?
I have lived by the water all of my life, we are located about 12 miles south of Annapolis, MD in the beautiful little town of Mayo, MD.
I have collected vintage stuff for about 20 years, my specialty is vintage costume jewelry. I have also designed jewelry for just as long. I worked for a jewelry designer for 2 years and loved it. My jewelry was featured in 2 catalogs, featured in many shops and I attended many East Coast Shows. When the internet came along it was another way to sell my vintage jewelry and my own jewelry creations.
What is your craft? and products do you offer in your shop? What are your most popular products?
I sell vintage and antique jewelry. I also re-purpose many broken pieces into new creations that I also sell in my shop.
What were you doing before you started Early Bird Jewels?
I worked in retail, which I wasn’t crazy about, so when I married Jerry and had a son. My husband worked full time so I could stay at home with our son. When he started school, I started working for a jewelry designer who taught me so much. I then opened my own business. I did about 20 shows a year on the east coast for about 7 years. I then moved my business to the internet about 15 years ago and started selling antique and vintage jewelry.
How did you get stated in your chosen craft and what do you enjoy most about it?
I have always enjoyed jewelry as a little girl and majored in art for about 2 years at our local college.
Where do you get your inspiration for your products?
My grandmother, she was such a talented artist.
What makes Early Bird Jewels Green?
I think what I do is recycling old and vintage items, jewelry that might be throw away or melted down for scrap. I hope to give each piece a new home or new look.
Where do you craft your products? Can you share a picture of your work area?
I have 2 extra bedrooms that I have claimed as mine, one is my office for listing and inventory, the other is for designing and sewing for my other business.
What advice do you have for Etsy shop owners who are interested in making their business eco-friendly?
It is very hard work running your own business but, if you enjoy what you do, you can make it work. I feel so blessed doing what I love. We have met so many nice folks in the antique and auction business where we find most of our treasures. The stories and history behind some of jewelry pieces we purchase are so unique. I feel we are very eco-friendly passing these items along.
What is your biggest challenge running an eco-friendly business?
Keeping up with everything – I also have 3 other shops on Etsy which are also eco friendly, a supply shop of vintage findings and eco friendly bags, so just keeping everything organized is the hardest part. My husband does all of my bookkeeping so that has been a huge help to me.
Where else can we find you?
Blog: EarlyBirdJewels.blogspot.com ~ (CHECK FOR GIVEAWAYS)