Happy Fox Studio: A business built on community.
While Mindfully Spent often focuses on minimizing purchases, most of us do spend a few dollars here and there. When we do, we can choose to invest in businesses that are sustainable and add value to back to the community. In the lead up to Small Business Saturday, we'll be highlighting entrepreneurs who boast values-based business plans alongside their unique products. #ShopSmall
Allison was naturally drawn to jewelry making. She began making rings and pendants in childhood and returned to the hobby as an adult. Her work is distinctive. Allison creates quirky, minimalist designs from eco-friendly, reclaimed materials. What started as a hobby quickly became a side-hustle: Allison, who already had a vintage store on Etsy, began selling her handcrafted accouterments to fund her hobby. Her business plan didn't unfurl as neatly as planned, but we'll get to that in a moment. First...
Here's why Mindfully Spent couldn't resist featuring Allison and Happy Fox Studio:
- She turned a side-hustle into a small business!
- Her reclaimed materials are environmentally friendly and full of character
- 10% of all her proceeds go to charity (international or local, the charities are chosen in personal ways. Charity is a way of family life in the Happy Fox Household: even Allison's eldest daughter sets money aside for community causes)
- The Happy Fox Household is doing a year challenge of buying no new clothes unless they are green products or thrifted (on a family-of-four budget, that pretty much means thrifted)
- She believes in cultivating community, in all the ways, shapes, and forms that takes place
- Allison is a never-give-up kinda gal: when traditional means of online business didn't work for her, she tried tried again
Now, back to that business plan...
Even after consulting forums and experienced shopkeeps, it turned out that Etsy wasn't the best platform for the unique, reclaimed materials she was using. Unlike traditional jewelry, her pieces didn't readily turn up in typical customer searches. In 2012, she tried selling at a Pop-up Shop and found much more success. Allison now partners with other local businesses in her region to set up unique shopping events that benefit all involved.
In 2015, the Happy Fox Studio Instagram account (originally set up just to share product photos) evolved into Allison's primary avenue for online business. In addition to individual sales and custom orders, contacts made through Instagram also led to wholesale business for Happy Fox Studio. Their jewelry can now be found in a number of brick and mortar shops.
Ways to shop Happy Fox Studio...
- Online: Instagram Shop at @happyfoxstudiojewelry
- In Person: One of the ways Allison builds community is by coordinating pop-up shows and shows that benefit all involved businesses. Her next event will be December 1st, 2016 in Tacoma, Washington.
Author's Note: This post was motivated by genuine admiration for Happy Fox Studio's products and the ways Allison and her family give back to the community. It is not paid content.