Mallow & Teal, a passion for creating colourful polymer clay accessories, discovered during maternity leave!

Mallow & Teal, a passion for creating colourful polymer clay accessories, discovered during maternity leave!

Introduce us to you and your brand!

Hi, I’m Yvonne, the maker behind mallow.and.teal. I started making earrings while on maternity leave from my job as a research scientist in Jan 2021. I instantly fell in love with the ability to tap into my unique style and love of colour and art, to create one of a kind handmade jewellery and accessories. I mainly work with polymer clay and resin as they make comfortable lightweight pieces, ideal for sensitive ears


How has your brand/work developed since you began?

I’ve really found a love in creating really detailed images out of clay for my earrings and this has made my pieces stand out from other clay makers. To do this, I make polymer clay “canes” which are similar to a stick of rock you’d buy at the seaside where the image travels all the way through the centre. My Instagram has some videos of my making process and I think it really helps to show the craftsmanship involved in my pieces

What are your main inspirations?

I’m inspired by trips to modern art galleries, nature, fashion and objects I have in my home that speak to my personal taste. I’m always drawn to lovely shades of pink and teal together which led to my brand name

What do you consider to be your most popular product? Why do you think it resonates with people

My stud pack earrings are always my best seller. I think they make a lovely gift and they’re really good value for the work involved in creating them. They add a little pop of colour and personality and you have a few different earring options to choose from each day

What piece are you the proudest of?

At a Xmas market, I noticed that some younger girls who didn’t have their ears pierced were really enthusiastic about my earrings. I have a 5 year old daughter and often make accessories for her so I recently developed a gift set which includes a pair of earrings for mum and a matching hair clip or clip-on earrings for her daughter. Little girls love to copy their “mammy” so I’m proud to have a product available to create these happy moments.

What would you consider to be the most challenging aspect about being a working artist/designer?

I balance my earring business alongside being a mum of 2 and also a day job as a research scientist, so time management is my biggest challenge. I have lots of exciting ideas for my small business but I need to go at a slightly slower pace than I’d like. The phrase “you can do anything, but not everything” is something I come back to a lot.

Do you have any past accomplishments you wish to share?

My highlights in my business so far have been designing earrings for a bride to wear on her wedding day. I also saw a TV presenter wearing my earrings on her news programme, which was a lovely small business moment.

How did you find out about SDX? And what made you apply to sell with us?

I used to visit the shop when it was in Ocean Terminal and loved it. When it moved to George St, it was the perfect location for my products to reach a wider audience and sit on shelves alongside some great Scottish makers

What have you found to be the most challenging aspect to your business since the beginning of the pandemic in 2020?

I’m lucky in that it was the lockdown in January 21 that pushed me out my comfort zone and I created my Etsy shop, so I have only ever traded in a pandemic. I’ve noticed a movement towards shopping small (something I’m passionate about myself) which has been a lovely support to my business.

What do you hope to gain from working with SDX going forward?

A sense of community with other makers and SDX. I also hope to find a customer base that enjoy my artistic colourful style of earrings

If you could share just one piece of advice to aspiring artists/designers who want to make a living from their creative talents, what would you tell them?

I’d tell them not to wait until everything feels perfect before launching. I spent enough time perfecting my craft so that the earring quality was high when I launched but other aspects like my branding, packaging, social media, still needed some work. This is something that can be developed over time as you start to make money to invest in your business. It’s easy to keep finding excuses to delay starting but you’ll love it when you do and you learn best by just putting yourself out there and giving it a try

And finally, help share some motivation with your favourite inspirational advise or quote!

“Art enables us to find ourselves, and lose ourselves at the same time”

Thank you to Yvonne for sharing her story with us on our Meet The Maker blog feature. You can find her jewellery at our Edinburgh, George Street shop

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