Summertime ear rings from a ‘allegra jewels’
nepchin: “Today, we are delighted to speak to Sonya from Allegra Jewels, to find out where it all began and their philosophy on customer service. Sonya, welcome and nice to have you with us today”
Sonya: “hi nepchin, it’s a privilege to have the opportunity to share my experiences with you today.”
nepchin: “You have some fascinating pieces. Have you always been creative and where do you get the inspiration for your designs?”
Sonya: “I believe the creative side has always been hidden somewhere though I had not truly discovered my passion for making jewellery until recently. I find it very meditative when I work on a piece of jewellery after coming home from my day to day job which is mainly involves numbers.
My inspiration comes from my mentors, family and friends. My mentors share their knowledge and experiences with me. They run a small jewellery store in Sydney which I discovered one day. It has amazing materials in store that has allowed me to design my own. My family and friends have supported me every step of the way and are right behind me which makes me feel very blessed. There are also friends who have shared their creative success stories with me that are truly passionate, motivating and inspiring.”
pearl ring from ‘allegra jewels’
nepchin: “tell us how you decided to take the plunge to do your own jewellery designs?”
Sonya: “About two years ago, I was given a beautiful jewellery set for my birthday except the set came in loose pieces and actual tools. That was the moment I had learned the basic skills of making a beautiful v-shaped chained necklace with purple swarovski beads and a pair of earrings to match the necklace. I wore my newly designed jewellery set with a beautiful long purple silk dress for a special night out.
Last year in August, I had my mind set on starting a business and wasn’t sure of what I could be doing. I wanted it be something creative and something I am passionate about – a choice between cupcakes or jewellery. The memory of making my gift and wearing it on that special occasion kept reminding me of the wonderful experience I had and my decision was finally made!
I have said to my mentor before ‘visiting the jewellery store is like being in a lolly pop shop’ There are lots of nice beads to choose from and they come in different colours (rather than flavours). As you can see, it doesn’t take too much for me to get started. It’s fun!”
nepchin: “What was the feeling like when you created your first bracelet?”
pink pearls necklace from ‘allegra jewels’
Sonya: “I felt really happy after designing and making my very first bracelet which had 3 strands of purple and blue Swarovski beads linked to a dainty silver O/T clasp. It was certainly a great sense of achievement and fulfilment when I saw the finished product. I went straight into designing the next!
nepchin: “and how about the first time you made your first sale?!”
Sonya: “there are 3 words to describe it – exhilarating, fun and rewarding!”
nepchin: “from your experience, how have your customers gone about purchasing your jewellery?”
Sonya: “My customers have purchased from me face to face at the markets (Balmain and Glebe), word of mouth referrals and on my website http://www.allegrajewels.com.au “
Velvet Charm Bracelet from ‘allegra jewels’
nepchin: “What is your approach to customer service and how do you keep your customers coming back?”
Sonya: “My approach to customer service is to ensure the product is made with quality materials and It must be made well. I ensure my customers are fully informed of the product quality they are purchasing. What are the materials used, where does it come from and give customers ideas on pieces that compliment their outfit? In addition, Allegra Jewels offers beautiful packaging options: gift boxes wrapped with purple ribbon or classic organza bags with gold print (where product is wrapped in paper). When passing on my business card and after connecting with my customers, they are keen to contact me directly to place additional orders or ask any questions they may have.”
nepchin: “If we flip the coin the other way around, as a customer, what was the best service you experienced?”
Sonya: “The best service I have experienced was at a restaurant where I had dropped my earring. All the wait staff stopped everything they were doing and started looking for it on the floor for me, even switching on the brighter lights. It is about going above and beyond and delivering exceptional service to meet your customer’s needs. Food and service were brilliant and I will be going back again.”
nepchin: “A real pleasure to hear your thoughts on customer experience, thank you for sharing.”
Sonya: “Thanks nepchin. It was a delight to share my story with nepchin.”