A Q&A with Bayley Kessler, Founder of Joailliere Designs
Jenny: Hello Bayley. Thanks for being here today. How did you select your business name, what does it mean and how do you pronounce it?
Bayley: For many years, I have had an affinity with the French culture. I wanted to have a name that echoed my feelings of France. I selected Joailliere because that translates to English as “female jeweler”. The best way to pronounce the name is “jwah-lee-air”.
Jenny: What made you decide to turn your jewelry making hobby into a business?
Bayley: I enjoyed making jewelry for friends and family and I received a lot of positive feedback, so I wanted to reach more people by doing what I love. Creating a business just seemed like the natural next step.
Jenny: I know you have an extensive background as a floral designer, what made you shift to jewelry design?
Bayley: First of all, I still create floral pieces, so I don’t think that will ever leave me. From my 23 years of experience in the floral industry, I take my knowledge of color, form and design and transfer all of that to the jewelry. As with floral design, there are many elements and textures I use to create my jewelry. So many combinations, so little time!
Jenny: What tips do you have for people when they are searching for the right piece of jewelry for a particular outfit?
Bayley: You need to know yourself. For example, do you like silver, gold or copper accents? Are you more attracted to crystal beads or semi-precious stones? Do you like big bold jewelry pieces, or do you prefer something delicate looking? Once you have a sense about colors and styles, then you can look at your clothing. Some fashions are designed a certain way and that will influence the length of a necklace and/or earrings.
Jenny: What do you suggest for people who want to go into business for themselves?
Bayley: Whether it be designing a product or providing a service, know your customer. Get to know their lifestyle, hobbies, and interests. By that I don’t mean to get their whole life history! Obtain general information so you can assist them in what they truly desire. Something else that is very important: know your competition. Go out in the community and find out who is doing what in the business you want to start. Play the detective and see what you discover! Finally, look at your unique life situation and circumstances. Decide if you want your company to be a full time operation or if it something you work on during the weekend.
Jenny: The holidays are coming up. Any advice for people who want to buy jewelry for someone?
Bayley: If you are buying jewelry for someone, make absolutely sure you know that person’s color and style. Otherwise, it may be disappointing for both people. What I offer at Joailliere Designs is a gift certificate for the jewelry. This way, the recipient can select from one of the creations on my web site or we can have a discussion about a custom item of jewelry that I can create specifically for them.
Jenny: What makes Joalliere Designs a “Business UNusual” company?
Bayley: It is my core value that I want my clients very satisfied with the jewelry I create. I adopted that work ethic in my floral career. I made sure that the customer was happy with the flower arrangement. If not, I fixed right then what they were unhappy about. They appreciated me making the flowers look the best and I was pleased to have a happy customer! As with flowers, having a joyful response to what I created with my jewelry confirms my core belief.
Jenny: What trends do you see right now in jewelry?
Bayley: A big trend now is geometric designs. Typically, the necklaces have five to seven geometric shapes lined up next to each other. This style is called a collar necklace. A majority of the necklaces are gold toned, and I have seen some where stones are embedded in the shape. At one time, brooches were very popular to wear. I love the look of the pins and I hope they make a come-back!
Jenny: How can people reach you?
Bayley: They can contact me at:
Jenny: Thank you for your time today, Bayley.
Bayley: My pleasure. Thank you.