Meet The Maker - Sarah Jane Sichello from Ugly Bunny
Today's featured maker is from Kelowna BC, and she is the creator behind the amazing company called Ugly Bunny. This jewelry line is the perfect blend between chic and laid back. The patterns and materials come together like they were meant to be. And the person behind it all is Sarah Jane Sichello.
What inspired you to start your own business? / What is your biggest inspiration?
Shortly after graduating from the Ontario College of Art and Design (OCAD) in 2006 my boyfriend (now husband), our dog Jimmy and I packed up our tiny apartment and moved to the mountains of the West Coast. When we moved to BC, I worked at a private college doing administration and then worked on Ugly Bunny as a side business in the evenings and on the weekends. Eventually I took a leap and started to work on Ugly Bunny full time and although it was scary it has been one of the best decisions of my life. My goal was to create a line of jewelry that was affordable and could be enjoyed by everyone but without scarifying quality. My work is most often inspired by the beautiful Canadian landscape juxtaposed with my love for contemporary design.
What are some of the challenges you face as an entrepreneur?
I have been fortunate enough to be able to work full time on Ugly Bunny for the past six years. Throughout my career I would say that the biggest challenge that I have encountered is making sure that I have a "work-life" balance. My husband is also self-employed and over the years we have both been guilty of working late into the evenings and on the weekends. It is so important for your health, sanity and creativity to make sure to dedicate time for things that are "non- work" related or else you will eventually burn out.
What advice would you give to others looking to become makers or creators?
Be kind. Be authentic. Never give up. Don't be hard on yourself if you make a mistake at some point. It is often through these little failures that we learn the most. Don't compare yourself to others or else you will go crazy. It is so easy to get caught up on social media and to compare yourself and your work to others which can be extremely detrimental to your growth as an artist/maker. Don't be afraid to reach out to other artists when you're starting out. I have had a few people reach out to me over the years and ask questions and I am always more than happy to help out if I can.