[6 MINUTE READ]
TGIF! We hope you all had a lovely Easter weekend and used the time to truly switch off. If we have realised anything over the past couple of weeks, it is that staying home doesn't automatically mean relaxation...
This week, we had the pleasure of chatting to the founder of the eponymous Sif Jakobs Jewellery. Sif Jakobs knows a thing or two about the difficulty of switching off, particularly when your work ignites your creativity and passion like hers does.
So take the next couple of minutes for YOU: pour yourself a coffee, get comfy and keep reading to find out more about the woman planning on taking over the world "one sparkle at a time..."
Welcome Sif! Let’s start at the beginning. Could you start by telling me a bit about your childhood and how you feel that has influenced you today?
I had a wonderful childhood in a beautiful little town in Iceland, Akureyri, where I was always so enriched by the nature and freedom of the land. I came from a family of six, which made me appreciate and understand the value of being close to those you love. I still make a point of visiting them as often as possible, no matter how busy I am.
Iceland is such an inspiration to me and the collections I create; my ancestry runs through everything I do. I draw so much creativity from the landscape of my homeland and truly, there is nothing more inspiring than gazing at a snow-capped mountain top, as I have done so many times in my life. It seems cliché, but winter isn’t winter without a snowy peak in the distance!
That sounds so picturesque! How did you make your start in the jewellery industry then?
I cannot believe that ten years have passed since I was sitting in my one-room apartment in Copenhagen, sketching jewellery and dreaming of having my own brand; just me, alone, with high hopes and ambitions.
My vision back then was to create a jewellery brand with strong DNA and a look and style that made women shine and feel beautiful. I had this dream of creating a glamourous, affordable luxury brand that was designed with all women in mind; no matter who you were or whatever time it was in your life... Ten years on, I still can’t believe I am sat in our beautiful offices in Copenhagen selling to customers in over 21 countries.
"I had this dream of creating a glamourous, affordable luxury brand that was designed with all women in mind; no matter who you were or whatever time it was in your life..."
Wow. Talk about manifesting your dreams! Here at CAROLINAGMX, we are especially interested in brands that consider sensitive skin conditions and allergies throughout the manufacturing process. Is this something that is important to Sif Jakobs Jewellery?
Definitely! I, myself, have very sensitive skin, so it’s really important to me to select the best materials for my jewellery. I want women to be able to wear and love these pieces for a long time, without having any adverse reactions. It is part of our policy that every material is thoroughly tested and regulated to a high standard for our customers.
That’s great to know! I think it’s things like this that really make a difference for customers. Speaking of, how does sustainability factor into your business?
It’s very important for me to have focus on sustainability and, as a company, we are always striving to do more. We all need to think about the future, our children, the next generation. For 2020, we have worked hard to make sure that all our packaging is FSC approved and will continue to make further steps in the ethical direction.
I love that! Right, so what strategies do you think have been key to the success of Sif Jakobs Jewellery?
I truly believe that so much of our success as an international brand is thanks to the engagement of all levels of staff throughout the business. We ensure that everyone within the company promotes our values and ethos, but also encourage them to articulate their own ideas and thoughts that might push us further. We work to a global mindset and a team mindset; we are able to do both because of the brilliant team who works with us and brings us their best every day.
Totally! Having a team that brings out the best in each other can be a gamechanger. So, what were your biggest challenges in starting up Sif Jakobs Jewellery?
Dealing with the unknown and specifically decision-making; believe it or not, this is probably the most stressful challenge we’ve faced. New entrepreneurs are forced to make hundreds of decisions a day; from big company-level decisions, to tiny ones. Mostly, we have to just go with our instinct and hope it works out. So far, it mostly has!
That’s brilliant! Developing your business instinct is so vital when starting up any type of company. What is your favourite thing about having started Sif Jakobs Jewellery?
I have learnt a lot in the process of building Sif Jakobs Jewellery; not only from running the business, but from interacting with others. I get to meet so many new people from all over the world and it’s so inspiring. There’s also a great sense of pride in creating something; being able to implement your ideas and to physically see people enjoying wearing the jewellery.
I bet! And, on a personal-level, what is the best part of your job?
For me, it will always be the creative part; sketching the jewellery. I find so much joy in everything from finding the right material, combining different stone shapes and colours, to finding the right display material and helping bring the vision to life in stores.
I can tell how passionate you are about that. So, what’s your absolute favourite piece of jewellery that you have ever created?
It has to be the Novoli Ring. It is inspired by the Nordic lights in Iceland and has won us a number of awards.
I’m not surprised... It is truly stunning. What makes Sif Jakobs Jewellery stand out?
Our jewellery has a personalised touch and each piece is totally unique. We aim to be totally different from the other mainstream players in the industry. There is a person behind the brand who lives and breathes it – I wear my jewellery every single day - and my Scandinavian heritage is deeply rooted in everything I do. Not only do I value the importance of high-quality materials and impeccable design, but I also value the way people feel when they are wearing my pieces. Truly, nothing makes me happier than seeing a Sif Jakobs Jewellery customer sporting our latest collections.
"We’re ready to take the brand to the next level. We are taking over the world, one sparkle at a time!"
I imagine it might feel quite surreal at times. What has been your biggest “pinch-me” moment?
Standing on a stage and receiving jewellery awards in the UK and in Germany. That was big! Actually, it was more than big, it was a totally awesome feeling!
On a day-to-day basis, you tend to forget that the hard work pays off and it can be easy to overlook just how much we have evolved. When you receive an award that physically shows you how far you’ve come, you are forced to acknowledge the bigger picture. When I think about it, it honestly makes me so proud. Receiving that kind of recognition from my peers motivates me to work even harder, daring me to grow beyond the limits of my own creativity.
That is completely awesome! I agree with you; seeing tangible displays of what you have achieved is really important for morale in any business. Could you describe what an average day at Sif Jakobs Jewellery might look like for you?
Well, it certainly looks very busy... From early morning to late evening I’m running between the office, meetings, production lines and development, or hopping from one country to the next. My brand is my life, and I love it!
Do you think you have a work/life balance?
To be honest, Sif Jakobs Jewellery takes up almost all of my time, but I’m working on changing that so I can spend more time with my family. I am the mother of a son called Sixten and I spend most of my free days with him, exploring nature and enjoying the arts.
Aw! What words do you live by?
“Fantastic”; if it’s not “fantastic”, it's not Sif Jakobs Jewellery!
Ok, I’m stealing that... What’s next for Sif Jakobs?
To grow the business and become a worldwide brand; the most preferred, affordable luxury jewellery brand and the first one people think of. We are quite well established in Europe now, and so we’re ready to take the brand to the next level. We are taking over the world, one sparkle at a time!
Like what you read? Head to Sif Jakobs Jewellery to shop the collection. Alternatively if you fancy checking out some of our previous interviews, you can find them here. All images are via Sif Jakobs Jewellery.
Want more from CAROLINAGMX? Check this out: Trying...Orgaid Organic Skincare With Sensitive Skin