Wednesday, November 24, 2010

I'm Giving Thanks to the Most Wonderful People in Necklace Town! Happy Thanksgiving!

Supplies have been coming in to Necklace Town at a furious pace! Over 43,000 jump rings, 18 spools of wire, chain cutters, cartons of stones, 4000 jewelry tags, 2000 bubble baggies. We'll go through this in the next two weeks and then have to reorder. Well, maybe not the jump rings that soon, but there is more on back order.

Today we chopped miles of chain. I thought I'd be sending chain home to be cut but everyone chomped right through those hanks and spools. We used up all the stones left from last week's shipment and we eagerly await the next. A lot of pieces were assembled until we ran out of lobster clasps. That's fine, I'm looking forward to Thanksgiving weekend and a tiny window that I can finally read my British Vogue while the turkey is frying.

I'm taking this opportunity to give thanks to team Melindesign. I've met so many new people in the last two weeks that just dived in and got to work on this project. Thanks to Donna and to Cami who helped guide the newbies and made them feel welcome with silly jokes, anecdotes, advice, and shared their expertise and technical know how. They even share baked goods. I had the most wonderful piece of pecan pie today, thanks to Sweet Cami! Dedicated Donna! Her infectious laughter keeps us coming up with zingers for those giggles that spill out of her while she's intently wire wrapping under her "special light" Thanks to Jill I, who puts the Energizer Bunny to shame, who has organized a top notch team at her base, with star employee Bella, the fastest wire cutter east of the Hudson River. I thank two new ladies who stopped in today who took command of their tools and got right to work. Jill D (yes! Another Jill!), seed bead extraordinaire and Maggie who whipped up 50 necklaces in record time. Will I be able to keep up with them?? Thanks to Lexy, who finally found her way to my house the other day and fit right into the groove. Thanks to Mr. B, for having the muscle to separate 233 of the toughest bike chain link and boxes of thick brass link chains. Thanks to cheery Patricia, who has drummed up her own team down county with her friend and cousin, getting it done! Thanks to Pam, who is so innovative, she comes up with nifty apparatus to make the assembly swift and easy. I love my jump ring openers! Jody, quiet and swift, who mastered perfect the tough stainless steel wire on her own and came back to show me a bouquet of perfect rounds. I love it!

I give thanks to the jewelry designers that have the vision, the creativity, the innovation of making their art work here and making a living at it. We want to fill their every need to be able to not have to outsource jewelry assembly overseas. I give thanks that they want to keep it in America and we want to give them the confidence and support that they can. Thank you!

These wonderful people have such enthusiasm that is intoxicating. They want to see this succeed. They're doing something that they love to do, or have done in some form or another in the past and are coming back to it. Creating something by hand and getting rewarded for it is so satisfying. Doing it around like minded people, doing it in the comfort of their homes. And all coming together to make this work here, at home, in the USA. Thank you!

I give thanks from the bottom of my heart to my husband, Michael and my son, Simon. Without them, I would be lost. Michael has helped me so much with my inadequacies on the computer, business sense and common sense. I'm stubborn but he's right 99% of the time. Thank you Simon, who has surpassed my wildest dreams, watching you grow into the the wonderful, successful, kind, generous, HELPFUL beyond belief, young man you've become. What a blessing all of you have been to me. Thank you!

Tuesday, November 23, 2010

We Have a Winner! I Spy Game 4

How funny is this! Someone came for an interview today and she did the I Spy 4: Halloween Special: Find the Broken Bone this month and found the broken finger! I gave her her prize, which turned out to be her birthstone earrings too. What a nice treat to do that. I also hired her and what a wicked chain cutter and assembler. I'm so glad she answered my ad! I'll have more on her in an upcoming Necklace Town Employee Spotlight.

And the winner is:

Margaret T of Lagrangeville, NY

Thanks for playing, Margaret!

Monday, November 22, 2010

Keeping the Local Economy Going in the USA at a Place Called Necklace Town

No one won the last I Spy. Do keep your "I" out for a special holiday one. My broken finger is getting better, albeit a little sore. I've canceled the rest of any doctor's appointments with their unnecessary tests, x-rays, MRIs, and cat scans. They couldn't do anything for it and I didn't feel like throwing any more insurance money away. It was so inadequate that had I not actually heard the snap of the bone, I would have just iced it, taped Popsicle sticks to it myself, and waited it out.

Thankfully it has healed enough for some serious work that has come into the studio very recently. A HUGE job, compiling of many thousands of necklaces, final figures aren't in yet. But we've started! We are going to make this happen, produce these necklaces, all here in the United States. We're going to improve our local economy by hiring MANY extra hands in the coming weeks.
We're hiring housewives, stay-at-home moms, musicians, students, artists, part timers and full timers, what ever anyone can give us. We're cutting miles of chain, opening thousands of jump rings, wire wrapping spools of wire and threading on truckloads of stones. We're buying dozens of pliers and timers, baskets and baggies. We're buying lunch once a week at local restaurants. We're ordering thousands of multiple products from companies in the United States from printing paper, bubble wrap, boxes, and stickers. We're shipping via the United Stated Postal Service.

We're sending people home with bundles of chains, stones, and directions so they can save gas on commuting and be there when the kids come home from school so they can be more productive and give us a hundred finished necklaces a week. We're doing it with a lot of people so we can have twenty times a hundred every week. We're meeting the most friendly, funny, personable, hard working, ingenious, creative people almost every day. They are telling their friends and neighbors of this opportunity and they are coming forward to lend a hand, learn a new vocation, learn of this awesome thing that is happening. It has made my head swim but we're staying steady. We are going to help our local economy, expand small businesses and keep it all in the USA. And meeting great people to boot!

In the coming weeks, I'm going to introduce you to these new employees of Melindesign and let you know of the progress of Necklace Town. If you live nearby and want to lend a hand for extra Christmas money, contact me! To date since Thursday 11/18/2010, we have finished 284 necklaces and 200 other styles just waiting for crystals to pop on to be shipped.