#237 Why I Care So Much About Your Jewelry Business

Episode #237


Every time I get an influx of new students, this question comes up in one way or another:


“Tracy, why do you care whether my jewelry business fails or succeeds? Why should I listen to you?”


Ouch, but fair! Why should you listen to me?


I’m not just some random entrepreneur on the internet making up advice as I go. I’ve been in the jewelry industry for over 30 years, for better and for worse.


Looking back, there are so many times I think, “I wish there had been someone there to guide me!”


I’ve walked the walk, and I’ve learned a lot of lessons the hard way. New designers face so many roadblocks and pitfalls that could be easily avoided with the right strategies.


So, why should you listen to me? Because I don’t just know the business, I know jewelry, too.


And to explain why I care so much about YOUR jewelry business, in particular, let me share a little bit about my long journey to becoming a jeweler, mentor, and coach…


Click here to download the show notes

I’ve Been There


I started back in the 90s when independent jewelry designers were still somewhat rare. I wish something like Flourish & Thrive Academy had been around when I was starting out. It would have saved me so much trouble.


I began with beaded jewelry and grew from there. Over the years I hired employees, rented studios, and expanded my reach as a brand. At the height of my first business, I was represented in over 350 stores worldwide.


But I was always stressed. I was investing in the wrong things. I was unsure of where to take my business. I wasn’t preparing for the worst-case-scenario.


And the worst-case-scenario came.


My biz was wiped out by the 2008 recession. I had to lay off my staff and file for bankruptcy. It was at this point, when I was already in damage-control mode, that I hired my first consultant.


I’m Drawn to Teaching


It took the worst-case-scenario disaster for me to finally invest in me, and that’s what allowed me to (slowly) bounce back.


As I was winding down my first business, I had to do some real soul searching and decide what I wanted. That’s when I pivoted to designing custom engagement rings and heirloom redesign pieces.


I’m still designing for the Tracy Matthews brand today.


But I knew I wanted to do more. In my experience, the jewelry industry had been especially tight-lipped, and it sucked! 


I loved mentoring the designers who worked for me, and I wanted to break away from the scarcity mindset that pervaded the industry and share what I had to learn through trial and error.


This desire would eventually lead me to co-found Flourish & Thrive Academy, where we teach jewelry designers of all levels to grow and scale a business that works for them.


I Love Jewelry


At the end of the day, I just love jewelry.


In the last 30 years, the rise of the internet and platforms like Etsy has allowed a higher volume of people to pursue their art as a business, which I think is great!


I firmly believe there is enough to go around, and I want designers to be able to live the life they want doing what they love. Anything I can do to help with that goal just makes me really happy! 


Does that answer your question? 😉


Remember, listen to the full episode above to hear a more detailed account of my journey.


I’ll see you next week, m’dear!


xo, Tracy


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