Our 3rd Meet the Maker’s is about one of the founding makers of Gypsy Spoonful and Owner of DCDJewelry
Tell us a little about yourself… Hi, I’m Delena. I’m a wife, Mom, Bonus Mom, bookkeeper and Jewelry Designer.
Who were you before you started creating? Before I started making jewelry I was a bookkeeper. I still am actually. I’ve been at my day job for almost 18 years now.
Who or What inspired you to start creating and why? My daughter is the reason I started designing jewelry. She’s my inspiration for everything I do.
What is the story behind your shop? (When it got started, how it got started, why you started it, your favorite first shop memory, etc.)
In 2010 I started making stamped jewelry because I blessed (cursed) my daughter, like my mother did before me, with a very unusual name. I wanted a necklace with her name on it and I couldn’t find anything anywhere. I had just stopped making bows and I needed a new venture to keep me busy while my husband was away, so while I was trying to find jewelry with Emma-Leigh’s name on it I stumbled across stamped jewelry. I spent hours researching and scouring the internet for any information I could find and I invested the last of my hair bow making money into a set I purchased off an online marketplace. I stamped my first piece with my daughter’s name on it and I was hooked. Shortly after that Delena Ciastko Designs was born.
Describe your crafting style and who you look up to when crafting yourself? My crafting style I would say is 2 fold. For my personalized jewelry I would say my style is more elegant and conservative. Something you can wear to work every day but it’s still elegant enough to wear for a night out. My other stamped jewelry that is mostly cash and carry I would say is funny and ultramodern. I like to take modern concepts and sayings and put a funny twist on them.
What do you look to for inspiration if you get creative block? When I get a creative block I’ll usually just step away and go watch a movie with my daughter and husband. Another thing I like to do for inspiration is go shopping for clothes with my daughter. She’s 14 so she is up on the latest teen trends. It really gets my creative juices flowing.
What puts you in the creative mood? Music always puts me in a creative mood. Whether it’s trying to come up with new items, researching keywords or actually making items music always helps. And a bonus for me is Emma loves to dance and sing so we will crank up the sound system and listen to hip hop or rap music and she’ll dance around while I stamp! It’s so much fun.
What makes your shop/ items different from the rest? What sets me apart from other jewelry designers and makers is my attention to detail and my quest for perfection. Every piece in my shop is meticulously handcrafted, one letter at a time. When you buy from me I want you to feel like your order really matters to me, because it does. I want your piece to be perfect and exactly what you wanted. My personalized pieces are crafted to last and be a piece of your heart forever.
What do you feel is your biggest accomplishment in your business? My biggest business accomplishment has got to be earlier this year when I bought my new Toyota with money from my business. It was the best feeling knowing I did this.
How do you handle time management and balance in your business between creative endeavors and necessary tasks that take up your time? Time Management is sometimes a hard thing for me as I do work a full time job as well as my jewelry businesses and family obligations. I try to set certain times for everything. Like I work 8:00am-5:15pm M-F. When I get home I try to take care of all of my business obligations before my husband gets home from work and then it’s family time for a few hours. If I have tons of orders then I may have to finish up orders after family time, which is fine because I don’t sleep much!
What advice would you give to future makers? The advice I’d give to future makers is be authentic. Don’t pick up something just because it’s popular right now. Make something that means something to you. You will have much greater success doing something you love as opposed to some fad that’s selling right now.
Why do you feel people should strive to continue to buy local and handmade rather that the cheap, mass produced products that are so easily available in today’s market? People should always strive to buy local and handmade because you are supporting a person and not a corporation. Buying handmade means your item will be made by a real person with a real family who cares about you and the product you’ve purchased. When you buy local you are putting money back into your local economy and may be helping a local family pay for groceries or school uniforms. When you buy handmade you know that your item will be well made and not mass produced in a factory in China.
We hope you enjoyed hearing from one of our fantastic makers!
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