Wednesday, May 6, 2009

Artist of the week - Carley from Vanilla Pixie

Vanilla Pixie is another talented Australian who designs gorgeous & unique hair accessories for little girls and is selling them world wide. Carley began designing these for her daughters and nieces in order to fill a void in the market. This talent and passion has taken her business onwards and upwards, reaching very promising milestones, she is now stocking boutiques and has reached 200 SALES in her Etsy store in only 9 months!!

Tell us a bit about yourself?
I am a wife & stay-at-home mum to three. I enjoy reading (there is always a book on the go), shopping, hanging out with friends & family.
I am organized, structured & under control (ok, most of the time). My background is in administration – in my pre-children life I was Administration Manager to a top Australian hairdressing salon.
My retail obsession is bags (in any form), I am easily annoyed by anyone who doesn’t respect my personal space & I have a sweet tooth… mmmm, donuts.

Where did your business name come from?
I wanted something that was fun, sweet & obviously, new. And I didn’t want to give the name any personal attachment.
So, I visited my friends at Wikipedia & looked up words that were evocative for me (food is always a good place to start). Eventually, after much trial & error – and lots of visits to ASIC making sure it wasn’t already taken – voila, Vanilla Pixie.
Along the way I toyed with pomegranates, lavender & thimbleberries

Tell us a bit about your business?
I went looking for something & couldn’t find what I was after. As it turns out, I wasn’t the only one in this situation. For me, Vanilla Pixie was born out of necessity.
I wanted beautiful, stylish, well-made & hard-to-lose hair accessories for my girls. Having worked in the hairdressing industry for 7 years, I had inside information that told me they just weren’t available. So, with nothing to lose, I made them myself.
Now, only 9 months down the track, Vanilla Pixie is closing in on 200 Etsy sales, has stock in 3 different children’s boutiques across Sydney, has taken part in 2 very successful markets & continues to grow!!
What inspires you to create what you make?
My daughters (aged 4 years & 18 months) of course!! But a visit to an exciting new ribbon supplier can get the creative juices flowing as well J

What do you think is the key to achieving successful sales?
You have to believe in what you do!! If you don’t have the commitment to your product, why should anybody else?
I have also spent time working beside one of the most creative, yet business-minded women that I have ever met. From her, I learnt that you can’t afford to get lazy. Your business always has room to grow. If something isn’t working, change it. Always be on the front foot. Take every opportunity to put yourself, and your product, out there. The very worst that could happen is that someone will say no.
What is your favourite music/artist/movie/book/website?
I’m never good at these questions – I can never narrow it down…
MUSIC – I really do like listening to anything. But, on high rotation at the moment: Nickelback, Dixie Chicks, Paramore, Pink and, because my kids like it, Justine Clarke.
MOVIE – Twister, The Lake House, You’ve Got Mail, Mr Holland’s Opus (& anything starring Nicolas Cage or Johnny Depp)
BOOK – I love reading biographies (real life can be so interesting!), My Sister’s Keeper (Jodi Picoult), Fall On Your Knees (Ann-Marie MacDonald) & Diana Gabaldon’s “Outlander” series
WEBSITE – Etsy (duh!), ninemsn, Google, Wikipedia &
If you could interview anybody in the world who would it be?
Karl Kruszelnicki, Bob Geldof, Michael J Fox & Queen Noor (all extremely fascinating in their own way). Where is your next holiday destination?
We are always planning “the next holiday” – what is there to work for otherwise? Our next is to Coffs Harbour (NSW North Coast) in July. A stunning part of Australia & hardly any tourists in the middle of winter.

You can also read more about Vanilla Pixie by visiting the blog, or say hi on Face Book.
To sweeten this occasion even more Vanilla Pixie for the month of May, my store is having a "Buy 1, Get the Second 1/2 Price" sale. You can't beat that so click here to get a piece of that great deal.

Thanks Carley for participating, your answers are truly inspiring, and I hope your next 200 sales are just as fun.

Ky x


vanilla pixie (Carley) said...

Thanks so much Kylie - looks fab :)

incalesco said...

What an interesting feature. I love Carley's work, but alas it wouldn't suit my son!

Beadsme said...

Great feature Carley.