“I think it’s really cool to make them,” said the 10-year-old entrepreneur from Harmony. “I have a friend and was over at her house, and she showed me how to make them, so I had the idea to start making my own.”
The Grade 5 student at Redcliff Middle School has been making her own earrings for about a year now, and with her father, Greg, being founder and co-owner of Inglis Jewellers, her ‘Jewellery by Abbi J’ line is available to customers in Truro and New Glasgow.
“I don’t wear a lot of necklaces or bracelets, but wear a lot of earrings,” said Abbi, about why she chose to stick with the colourful jewels to hang from an earlobe. “I got my first ear hole when I was about five, and my second ear hole last summer.”
Selling to friends and family, as well as her father’s stores and some craft shows, Abbi estimates she’s sold about 60 pairs already. The average cost per pair is $3.
“I’m actually saving up for a baby doll,” said Abbi, whose other hobbies include playing piano and guitar, reading and dabbling in the arts. “They’re called ‘Reborn Babies,’ so they’re very much like a real baby. They’re expensive, so saving up takes a lot of time.”
With her earrings being available in Inglis Jewellers since about November, Abbi spends as much time as she can inside the two stores, however, she spends more time in New Glasgow because it isn’t as busy as Truro.
“Things have been going great. I like being in the store because there’s a lot of people – I like getting to meet them and talk with them.”
Many customers are surprised to learn the face behind the line isn’t old enough to even have her license, but she’s had positive comments.
“One of my best customers is Debbie Lawrence,” she said of the founder and president of Abundant Living Inc. “She bought five pairs at once and even paid me extra for my great customer service.”
With numerous beads in her repertoire, Abbi often uses her favourite colour – blue – to create her earrings. She’s excited now, however, because her parents found her some seashell beads.
“I’m so happy to have those,” she said.
Abbi isn’t sure how long it takes her to make a pair of earrings, which includes using pliers, writes and the top piece that hooks through the ear piercing.
“Some take longer – the wire can sometimes be a bit stubborn. I find more trouble when I need to cut the wire. It’s hard when you cut them to even them out. One will be one size and the other (to the pair) will be different, so then I have to take them all apart.
“Sometimes it can be tough.”
Listening to her daughter, Abbi’s mom, Pam, said she and Greg are “really proud” of her entrepreneurial skills.
“Throughout her life we’ve tried to guide and mentor her, and she did this all on her own,” said Pam. “She’s really good with conversations. She has great inner confidence and comes up with some good combinations (for the earrings).”
Abbi has also created her own business cards to attach with each pair she sells, with ‘Thank you’ accompanying the back.
She’s created a Facebook page for ‘Jewellery by Abbi J’ and has had many people she doesn’t know now liking her page and leaving her comments.
Anyone wishing to contact her about purchasing earrings (and can’t catch her visiting the Inglis Jewellers stores), can email her at firstname.lastname@example.org or join her Facebook page.
ABOUT ABBI JOHNSTON:
- Lives: in Harmony
- Age: 10
- School: Grade 5 at Redcliff Middle School.
- Interests/hobbies: Playing guitar and piano, jazz, drawing, reading, animals.
- Pets: Three dogs and nine fish; also wants a hamster.
- Favourite colour: Blue
- Favourite class at school: Health
- Favourite movie genre: “Scary movies are the best.”
- Has created: ‘Jewellery by Abbi J,’ a line of earrings she sells at local craft shows, as well as at Inglis Jewellers in both Truro and New Glasgow.