In this series, we meet the designers behind the POOL brands for a special look into what it takes to be an independent designer.
SPOTLIGHT ON: La Raffinerie
1. Tell us about yourself! What is your brand’s product? La Raffinerie is a a jewelry brand based in Montreal. We create statement necklaces made of ribbon and semi-precious stones. Everything is proudly made by hand in a little sunny studio in a very artistic neighborhood of Montreal called the Mile-End (think Brooklyn).
2. What sets your product apart from the crowd? We love vibrant colors! All of our necklaces are made by hand using different materials such as leather and textile. We want to offer our customers affordable trendy jewelry made locally.
3. As independent designers, how did you get into the business? After graduating in Economics and Politics, I worked as a business adviser for start-ups. After a few years, I realized that I was myself an entrepreneur! For a year, I worked on my business at night and on weekend until last year where I definitively quit my 9 to 5 job. And don’t regret it! I love the creative side of making jewelry…and being my own boss.
4. Any words of wisdom for aspiring designers? Write a business plan and start small at first to test the market. Once you’re sure, go for it! Listen to yourself!