Tuesday, 23 November 2010

Where has the time gone?

It has been so long since I last blogged I feel like I've let myself down a bit, but with good reason!!

When I got the website up and running in April of this year I expected the odd sale here and there, the odd commission from previous customers and maybe a few new orders through some of the other avenues I have been promoting the business through but boy was I wrong!

To date, there have only been a few sales through the website but I don't think I was quite prepared for the amount of work that was put my way by existing customers, friends of friends and other people who had seen my work either in person or online.

With several wedding orders under my belt, these orders including cake toppers, tiaras, bridal jewellery and bridesmaid gifts, personalised Christmas decorations, made to order jewellery and household accessories orders I had to make quite a big decision in cutting down my hours worked at my 'day job'. Although I am self-employed and work from home it became extremely difficult for me to do my job, work on my jewellery orders, maintain the house and look after the 3 children...something had to give!

After a lengthy discussion with my very supportive and understanding partner we have decided that based on the last 8 months I should focus fully on developing Urban Sophistication Designs meaning that as of December 24th I will no longer be an accountant but a full-time jewellery designer!!!
I know that there will be times when sales are rare if not non-existent but we are fully prepared for that and it means that instead of scheduling meetings, providing finance reports and auditing accounts I can plan my week so that my time is used efficiently and I can begin to regularly update my blog, Facebook, website and attend a few more craft fairs.

I was considering completely overhauling the website and using a different host but feel that as most of my sales haven't actually been through the website so far, an update and freshen up will be more than enough. With this in mind it means the website will have to be removed for a few weeks while all of this work is done.
I can begin to tell you how liberating it feels to finally be able to follow my dream.

Emma xx

Wednesday, 25 August 2010

Just where do I start?

It has been a very long time since I have blogged,I know, but things really seem to be taking off leaving me very little time to myself.

I was approached by a photographer from a well known magazine in the Caribbean to provide some jewellery and accessories for a photo shoot, had 3 big wedding orders to complete, stock to produce AND look after an 8 year old, 5 year old and 18 month old during the holidays...Phew,I'm glad it's all coming to an end.

I am hoping that with the children back at school next Friday I will be able to focus on marketing and really driving website sales. I had a crisis not too long ago, I wanted to re-brand and start all over again. This was due to the fact that although I seem to be doing pretty well on commissioned pieces and wedding orders, the website has brought in very few sales. I have realised that in order to drive customers to the website I really need to put myself out there and not be worried about rejection.

With this in mind I spent the little time that I have had to myself to plan and design some new collections, look into marketing and advertising avenues and really get stuck in. Having such a fantastic partner has really helped as I know he has really kept me motivated.

So here's to a bigger and brighter future!!!

Tuesday, 1 June 2010

Craft Juice Tuesday

WOW,what a week it's been. We've had febrile convulsions,fevers,viral infections and hospital admittances all since my last blog post. Those of you that are following me on Twitter will know all about the ups and downs.
To be able to sit and write this post and admire all the lovelies over at www.craftjuice.com has been a very welcome distraction!

There is no particular theme this week just random selection of gorgeous handmade items.

My Top 3 - Tuesday 1st June 2010

This choice needs very little explanation as any woman will know. Feeling a bit stressed? A bit of bling will always cheer me up!!!
It's a shame I didn't discover this a lot sooner. All the trips we've made to casualty recently this Crayon Roll would have really come in handy!

I knew as soon as I saw this that I would have to include it in my blog. This bracelet is called 'Sunshine' and as the name suggests,who wouldn't feel a warm cheery feeling wearing it. Just what I need after the week I've had!
To see these items and more then head on over to www.craftjuice.com
Until next time...xx

Tuesday, 25 May 2010

Craft Juice Tuesday

Good Morning all,hope you enjoyed the fabulous weather yesterday.

My Craft Juice Tuesday offering this week is based on items that I know the kids would adore. I'm sure once you've seen my top 3 picks you'll understand why I've picked them...they're simply adorable.

My Top 3 - Tuesday 25th May 2010

These daisy chain bracelets instantly take me back to my childhood and afternoons spent picking daisies from the local park. My daughter would love these bracelets and I could just see her and her friends using them as a symbol of their secret society!

I remember my Grandma making me a lavender peg doll when I was younger and haven't seen any since. I would love my little girl to see this cute little scented doll every time she opened her draw,how uplifting.

All I can say is-"how cute?" what cot would be complete without this set of gorgeous bear bunting?!

To see these items and more then head on over to
Craft Juice is free to join. All you need to do is simply register to become a member and then you will be able to vote on your favourite items or submit your own handmade items for the craft community to comment and vote on.
Until next time...xx

Wednesday, 19 May 2010

A Quick Update

As I explained in my last blog post I had been AWOL for a while but with good reason.
Things have been extremely busy at home because the business had taken off and I was inundated with custom orders and 2 large wedding orders.
So as promised,here are some pictures of items that I have made during my leave of absence.

Men's Bone and Leather Necklet
This is the first item of menswear that I have made and have had quite a positive response. So I will definitely be extending the men's range.

Personalised Bracelet
A customer had seen a bracelet in my Facebook shop and wanted something similar but personalised with her name and this is the result.

Children's Pink Wooden Bead Bracelet
I had a quick play with some new wooden beads that I had and am quite pleased with the way this bracelet turned out.

Wine Glass Charms
Wine glass charms always seem to go down well in our house and I love this set of 6 cute,colourful charms

Purple Stripey Keyring
I think these beads are fun and funky and will brighten up any set of keys or anything else you can think of attaching it to!
I am currently in the process of making my very 1st tiara as a practice run for the one I need to make next month so once it is completed I will upload a picture for you all to see.
Until then...xx

Tuesday, 18 May 2010

Craft Juice Tuesday

Before you say it,I know,I know I haven't done a Craft Juice Tuesday in weeks. Things have been ridiculously hectic at home and we've just managed to get back into a settled routine.

When I was thinking about what items to include in this weeks selection,it made perfect sense for me to choose items that I would be happy to receive on my birthday this coming Saturday.
So here are my choices this week...

My Top 3 - Tuesday 18th May 2010

This gorgeous set would make any girl feel fab on her birthday. I love the combination of the pearls and the silver making it quite dainty and not to 'heavy'.

What a better way to start your birthday than with a lovely soak in the bath and these gorgeous handmade natural avocado soaps to keep you feeling fresh and moisturised.

I can just see that this bangle will work so well in summer. Teamed with cream,brown and gold
summery outfits any girl will feel like a Grecian goddess with this bangle.
So there are my choices for this week. Remember Craft Juice is free to join just log onto www.craftjuice.com and register for free to become a member.

Thursday, 13 May 2010

A Quick Update

Good afternoon all

I know I have neglected my blog of late so I apologise but this has been for a good reason. I have been securing places at craft fairs,working on promotion and completing custom orders.
As life is pretty hectic these days I have now re-worked my schedule so that I can realistically fit everything into a 24 hour period.

To keep up with today's fast-moving technological society,I have now added a shop to my Facebook page where you can buy my items directly from the comfort of your own Facebook profile. You can find my Facebook shop here.

There are no pictures from me for this post but as I am busy beavering away I will be able to update you very soon.

Until then.....

Emma xx

Thursday, 22 April 2010

Latest Makes

When the Easter holidays were approaching I thought to myself "No problem,I can handle a 7 year old, a 5 year old and a 1 year old. I'll just take them out a few times." How wrong was I!! After day 2 it became quite clear that I would either end up with no hair or have to make a 'Plan B',so that's exactly what I did.
As we have a caravan in Surrey I decided to take the little darlings away for the second week and WOW,what a difference. They didn't bicker,I barely saw them,in fact the only time I did see them was at bed time and when they were hungry. Luckily I had taken some essential jewellery making items away with me and was quite impressed when I was actually able to make these three pieces in peace!

I have had the orange and black beads floating around for a little while but it wasn't until the beads fell onto the bed that I knew what I wanted to do with them. The pattern that they fell in is almost identical to the way I have put them together. Must have been their destiny!!
I really like how this necklace turned out,particularly as it has turned out completely different to what I was imagining. There are 3 strands of fine silver-plated chain suspended from a turquoise glass heart. 2 of the 3 pieces of chain are finished with a turquoise swarovski bicone each and the central one finished off with a feather charm.

This handbag charm consists of white acrylic beads with silver colour bell caps alternated with pink acrylic beads and finished off with a twisted pink and white glass bead and clear swarovski ab bicone.
Maybe I'll have to take them away more often!!
Until next time, Emma

Tuesday, 20 April 2010

Craft Juice Tuesday

WOW,how quick did Tuesday come around again?! As the kids were off school for the Easter holidays I thought I would take the kids off to the countryside for the last week and what a well needed rest I got. So now I'm feeling totally rejuvenated I bring you this weeks Craft Juice Tuesday . There is no particular theme this week,just my favourite 3 items.

My Top 3 - Tuesday 20th April 2010

These earrings are so me it's almost as if the designer had me in mind!! I love the colour and style and will be heading on over to the designers shop.
How lovely are these? I think this charm set is really pretty and would work really well as a keyring and handbag charm.

And lastly but by no means least is this stunning bracelet. The colours and materials work extremely well together and I'm really into blue at the moment too.
So that's it for this weeks Craft Juice Tuesday. If you would like to see these items and more then head on over to www.craftjuice.com
Emma xx

Tuesday, 13 April 2010

Craft Juice Tuesday

The past week or so we have had some lovely,bright and sunny days. This weather has encouraged me to get out and sort the flower beds out. With this in mind,my Craft Juice blog this week is centred around flowers. There were some fantastic items(as always) to choose from but here are my choices this week.

My Top 3 - Tuesday 13th April 2010

At first glance I thought these hairpins were made using real flowers. It was only after reading the item description that I realised that were fabric petals! These hairpins are gorgeous,definitely something I would treat myself to!
Anyone who knows me knows that I am never without my notebook and pen. Sometimes I find the covers very boring and impersonal. This notebook cover has such a cute little feel about it that I think I definitely would want to get it out and write a lot more.

Wow,what fabulous earrings. These would be a welcome addition to any jewellery box and set of my new dress perfectly.
To see these items and more then head on over to www.craftjuice.com
Remember that Craft Juice is free to join. All you have to do is register for free and then you will be able to vote on your favourite handmade items and submit your very own handmade pieces to be voted on by the 'crafty' community.
Until next time.....
Emma xx

Tuesday, 6 April 2010

Craft Juice Tuesday

This week I really had trouble deciding on just 3 items to blog about. There are so many fantastic items handmade by wonderful artists on Craft Juice that it really was hard. As holiday season is fast approaching and nothing reminds me more of a nice sandy beach,beautiful waters and a clear blue sky than a nice bright,fresh blue colour,this weeks theme is... Beautiful in Blue!!

My Top 3 - Tuesday 6th April 2010

Now I am very much a bracelet person and often I see beads that are simply gorgeous and I know would make me a fantastic bracelet. I absolutely love these beads,they are fresh,clean and very pretty. I think anyone wearing these would be thrilled.

This bag is the perfect size to fit a towel,costume,book and a few other nik naks in to take with you to spend an afternoon lazing on the beach. As it is made from oil cloth,should you get it dirty you can just give it a quick wipe and it will be as good as new!

Once you've managed to get a good spot on the beach what better way to unwind than with a book. And should the local hunk catch your eye,there's no need to lose your page. This stunning bookmark will keep your page for you while you check out the 'scenery'!!
Ok,so now I guess it's back to reality with a very hard bump. Oh,well not long to go now and I should soon be on that beautiful beach.
Off I go to wrap up some presents for my Dad's birthday today.
Emma xx

Saturday, 3 April 2010

We are finally live!

As of 12am this morning www.urbansophisticationdesigns.co.uk went live. Just before I made it live I went through a range of emotions including frustration,upset,anger and fear but I am now pleased to report that it's all done.

To celebrate the opening of my website,I was giving away this memory wire bracelet to one lucky winner.

All you had to do was leave a comment on my giveaway post. All names were put in a hat and one pulled at random and I am pleased to announce that the winner is..........................................

So well done to Enfys,I will be in contact to get your details from you so I can send your prize on. A huge thank you to everyone who entered and for your continued support.

Keep following for your chance to win more goodies.

Thanks again

Emma xx

Tuesday, 30 March 2010

Craft Juice Tuesday

Hi all and welcome again to my Craft Juice Tuesday

This weeks selection all have a Spring theme. My top 3 have been chosen because I feel that they have a 'Springy' feel to them.

So here they are......

My Top 3 - Tuesday 30th March 2010

Now the days are that bit brighter I find that my daughter and I are wearing much more pink. As she is of a certain age she is starting to pick her own clothes and accessories,as soon as she saw these she practically begged me to buy them so they have to go in my top 3 this week!

I have recently done something out of the norm and gone out shopping and bought items for myself!!!(as opposed to the kids,hubby and house). One of my new purchases was a lovely aqua coloured bag which I think this charm would suit perfectly.

And last but by no means least these beads are the definition of spring-time. They are fresh and bursting with colour and life. I think these would make a fantastic bracelet or necklace.
So there you have it,my 3 picks from Craft Juice this week.
Remember, Craft Juice is free to join,just go to www.craftjuice.com to register.
Emma xx

Wednesday, 24 March 2010

Recent Makes

Hi all

With the launch date for the website rapidly approaching I thought that I would get creative and make a few more items.

I have been so busy uploading content to the website and other stuff at home that I haven't been able to devote as much time as I would have liked to towards designing and making,but I am very pleased with the few pieces have been able to create....take a look.

This bracelet is mainly made up with rose quartz chips with a clear glass bead sandwiched between 2 silver tone beads and two different points along the bracelet. It is finished off with a lobster clasp and a rose quartz and clear glass bead charm.

I made a very similar bracelet for my mum on Mother's Day and as a result I had quite a few orders come in for bracelets like this in different colours. As they seem quite popular I thought I would make a couple more in a few colours while I had some time. I call them Charm Cluster Bracelets. They are basically a cluster of glass and acrylic and charms hung from a large jump with a fancy link chain and a lobster clasp are also fastened to.
Remember,to be in with a chance of winning a gorgeous gold and green coloured memory wire bracelet just leave a comment on the following post http://urbansophisticationdesigns.blogspot.com/2010/02/first-blog-giveaway.html
Emma xx

Tuesday, 23 March 2010

Craft Juice Tuesday

As I write this weeks Craft Juice Tuesday, I am actually suffering from food poisoning thanks to an Indian takeaway on Sunday!!

With that in mind,this weeks top 3 picks are things that I feel would pick me up or help lift my mood a little,so without further delay....

My Top 3 - Tuesday 23rd March 2010

As I spent most of yesterday in bed,I thought that I would ctch up on some reading. The problem was I kept dozing off and forgetting what page I was on. If I had a gorgeous bookmark like this one,I wouldn't have had to worry.

Ok,so although this cute little character wouldn't have had much of a pro active role in helping me through my sickness,just his bright and cheery persona is enough to cheer anybody up.

This lip balm would be a life saver right about now. My lips feel dryer than a cardboard box so this yummy looking lip balm would go down a treat right about now.
So there you have it,my top 3 picks from Craft Juice this week. To see these items and more why not head on over to www.craftjuice.com

Tuesday, 16 March 2010

Craft Juice Tuesday

Yes,its time for Craft Juice Tuesday again.

This week is quite an eclectic mix of items,all of with I think are fantastic. It is extremely difficult to pick only three items each week but if you want to see all the other items available just go to www.craftjuice.com

My Top 3 - Tuesday 16th March 2010

I simply adore this mobile. It would fit perfectly in my 1 year olds room,I find it to have quite a relaxing feel about it. Maybe it's the thought of being on a boat somewhere sailing the ocean!!!

This is something I would have loved to have received after having my children. I love the use of the different ribbons and the colours work really well together.

Now that the weather is getting a bit better and the sun is coming out,this suncatcher would look absolutely fantastic hanging in our kitchen window. It reminds me of a cottage we stayed at in the countryside a few years ago.
Well that's my top 3 for this week.
Remember, Craft Juice is free to join. All you need to do is simply register to become a member and then you will be able to vote on your favourite items or submit your own handmade items for the craft community to comment and vote on.

Monday, 15 March 2010

A Present For My Mum

Now that Mother's Day has been and gone I can post these pictures safe in the knowledge that my Mum and Grandma have already received their gifts.

My Mum's present

My mum has a condition called Lupus and also Rhumatoid athritis. One of the many side effects of these conditions is swelling. She often struggles to find bracelets that she likes large enough to fit her wrists so I thought I would make one just for her.
This bracelet is made up using a fancy link chain,which makes up the bracelet frame. Near the clasp there is a collection of beads;a foil lined blue heart,blue bicones and a charm with the word 'inspire',clear round glass beads and a heart charm. It is finished of with a lobster clasp and an extender chain.

My Grandma's Present

My Gran always has a few novels on the go at once and one of her pet hates is paper bookmarks. She adores flowers and pink is one of her favourite colours so I thought how fitting to use pink glass beads and a flower charm to create this bokmark. I am pleased to report it was a instant hit!!

My mum wore her bracelet out today as she had 3 appointments and couldn't wait to show it off. I have had 4 confirmed orders for bracelets similar to hers but in different colours, 2 for matching necklaces and 2 requests for more information. I must admit I am really chuffed with myself!!


Sunday, 14 March 2010

My Very First Giveaway

Recently I set up my Facebook Fan Page and on it my very first giveaway. My target was to reach 100 fans and on doing so I was giving away a set of four wine glass charms.

After a lot of hard work,promotion and shameless begging I finally reached and surpassed my target this afternoon. The winners name was picked out of a hat 30 minutes ago and I can now reveal that that winner was Natalia Ambrose Rush.

She will be receiving her prize which can be seen below.

I was so excited to be doing my first giveaway and can't wait to do another one. So to be in with a chance of winning some goodies why not become a fan at http://www.facebook.com/?ref=home#!/pages/Urban-Sophistication-Designs/332912878123?ref=ts

Also follow me on Twitter for updates,offers and details of giveaways.

Don't forget there is also a chance to win a memory wire bracelet. All you have to do is comment on the second post in this blog to be in with a chance of winning.


Friday, 12 March 2010

A Chance To Catch Up

With the launch date to the website rapidly approaching, I have recently found myself snowed under with all the 'boring' stuff like paper work,packaging,uploading content onto the website and making sure all the things that need to be done are getting done!

After finally ticking some of the boxes on my to do list,I found some time to get on with the fun part - making some items.

So I thought I would share some of my recent makes with you.

To me a black and white/clear combination always looks timeless and quite smart. This chunky silver-plated charm bracelet is adorned with black diamond shape glass beads and clear round glass beads.

These earrings were so unbelievably difficult to photograph that the picture doesn't do them justice. I have used very small acrylic beads in lilac and purple to createthe uper part of the earring and then used a purple acrylic 'crystal' to create the dangle.

I really,really like this necklace,the green square beads fascinated me for ages! The necklace is made using these green square acrylic twisted beads that have a fantastic velvety feel. I have used clear ab bicones between each green aquare and then finished the necklace off by suspending the beads from a silver-plated chain and a toggle clasp.

If your not already a fan then why not become a fan of my Facebook Page for the chance to win a set of wine glass charms.

Emma xx

Tuesday, 9 March 2010

Craft Juice Tuesday - 9th

Yes,it's that time again - Craft Juice Tuesday. As this coming Sunday is Mothering Sunday,I thought I would be fitting to base this weeks Top 3 picks on suitable gifts that I would be more than happy to give or receive. There are some fantastic gift ideas on Craft Juice and I found it extremely difficult to choose just three, but I managed to do it and here they are.

My Top 3 - Tuesday 9th March 2010

I love this brooch. I really like the colours and beads used to make this and I would definetley be happy to receive this on Mothers Day.
This card just jumped off the page at me!! I adore the colours and style of this card and would be proud to present this to my mum on Mothers Day

There is one lady that I can never forget on Mother's Day and that is my dear Grandmother.
She has been there for me for as long as I can remeber and has treated me more like a daughter than granchild. I know she would love this bracelet. The beads used and the colour of the shell is absolutely gorgeous - just like her!
So there you have it,my Top 3 from Craft Juice this Tuesday. For more items and gorgeous gift ideas, head on over to www.craftjuice.com.

Friday, 5 March 2010

My First Award

I am proud to announce that I have become the very proud receipient of my very first 'Sunshine Award'
A huge thank you goes out to Setters-Delight who nominated me for this award. This comes as a big suprise and a very big boost,as this blog hasn't even been in operation for a week yet!!

The rules for accepting the award are:

  • Place the logo within your blog or post
  • Pass the award on to 12 bloggers
  • Link the nominees within the post
  • Let the nominees know they have received the award by commenting on their blog
  • Share the love and link to the person from whom you received the award

So here are my twelve nominees.


Elissa(not just handbags)


Colours of Enfys

Crystal Velvet Weddings


Mind What You Eat

Owl Loves Panda

Abby Beads

Tip Top Toppers Things

Sunrise Cards

Quirky Pigs Felicity in Domesticity

Tuesday, 2 March 2010

Craft Juice Tuesday

CraftJuice Tuesday is something that I will be taking part in weekly on a Tuesday. Basically I will be selecting my top 3 picks of handmade items from CraftJuice and showcasing them here.

CraftJuice is free to join. All you need to do is simply register to become a member and then you will be able to vote on your favourite items or submit your own handmade items for the craft community to comment and vote on.

My Top 3 - Tuesday 2nd March 2010

Although I am not one for vintage,I love the colours in this piece and would be very comfortable wearing it.

I absolutely adore this necklace. I think the colours and materials work really well together making this piece truly unique.

And finally,as soon as I saw this set I knew it was me. This is the type of set I wouldn't hesitate in buying.

To see these items and more head over to http://www.craftjuice.com/