Working Woman Wednesday. Interview with Crafted Jewelry & Accessories Owner EmpressYmanni Burke

Interview by Abner Jackson III

Tell readers about your Empress Treasures business and when did you start it?

I started my actual business only a few months ago, however I have been designing and creating my own jewelry and accessories for about three years.  The Empress Treasures brand offers fashionable and uniquely crafted jewelry and accessories.  My collection features ethnic and bohemian chic mixed with current trends in a unique and effortless way.

What inspired you to start your own business?

At first designing jewelry was just a hobby, a way for me to be creative and frugal at the same time not as an actual sustainable source of income for me.  The compliments and feedback I got when I would wear pieces that I created from friends, family and even strangers planted the initial entrepreneurial seed.  I would always get asked where I bought my accessories from and when I respond with “I made this” people would really just gas my head and request pieces for them.  I just decided to go all in and make this my business.  Overall the need to have my own business was always inside me but grew as I gained more education and work experience.  I knew I would eventually work for myself, because I could not stand working for other people.  No one will appreciate me better than me!

For a first time buyer, what items would you recommend to purchase from your website?

For my first time buyers I recommend purchasing something that immediately stands out to you, but something you would not normally purchase or wear.  Dare to be different! One thing that is really popular amongst my new and returning customers are any designs with lava rocks and different metals! These stones accompanied by the metals are unique and versatile, so they are definitely my best sellers.

Are there any stores that sell your merchandise? If not, would you be open to the idea of having it sold at different stores.

Right now my merchandise is exclusively sold in my boutique an on my website, http://www.empresstreasures.us.  As my brand grows I do aspire to have my items sold elsewhere and recognized globally.  However, right now I am honored to have my current situation and location.  I’m just truly blessed to participate in the many different local events and festivities.

What do you feel separate your products from others?

The fact that my items are uniquely handcrafted, reasonably affordable and one of a kind.  Nothing is reproduced and very rarely do I make similar items.  I do this to keep the originality and to make each piece feel like a custom piece designed for each customer.  My customers return, because they know no one will have the same design as them anywhere.

What is your idea of success?

For me success is setting yourself up to achieve a goal, executing that goal all while continuing to set new goals.  Success is definitely individualized, I believe I am successful already because I wake up happy and look forward to going to “work”.  Rather than dreading the time spent away from my family building someone else’s dreams and not my own.

What is the best advice you’ve been given?

Learn how to make a living doing what you love, that way you never work!

Is there anything you would like people to know about you?

I will try something new (within reason) at least once! I’m not afraid of the word NO.  I’m very detail oriented and prefer quality over quantity, less really is more!

Please let everyone know how you can be reached (twitter, IG, FB, websites, etc)?

You can like/follow me on the social media sites, Facebook and Instagram as Empress Treasures.  You can email me on my website at http://www.empresstreasures.us.  For those of you who are local or visiting the area.  YempressScreenshot_20180814-231455_InstagramScreenshot_20180814-231536_Instagramou can stop by my boutique at 209 San Carlos Ave 111F, Sanford, FL 32771 (Closed Monday/Tuesday, Open Wednesday- Friday 12pm- 6pm, Saturdays/Sundays are reserved for vending in different communities and events, check social media for updates) and lastly by telephone at 321-586-3799.

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