Before I could begin to think about inspiration during this
pandemic, I had to find a way to get
Motivated by Necessity
In late December 2019, I arrived home from my last ship
appearance, after three weeks in ship quarantine. It would be
months before my unusually long recovery time was suspected to be
Long COVID-19. My first month home was spent sleeping and
resting. After 3 years of non-stop travel, it felt like a
By February, it was becoming tedious and I was beginning to slide
into apathy towards both my business and my personal life. By
March, it was clear the world was in a full-on pandemic and my
employees were facing unemployment. All of this was occurring
while I was sleeping more than 15 hours a day and coughing like a
It was obvious we could not rely on our ship-based business for
an indeterminate amount of time and that it was going to require
energy and extreme ingenuity to hold onto my business. 3 years of
photographing textures and sketching design were shelved to come
up with a survival strategy.
Motivated by the Q Crew
With the help of my core studio crew and my media-manager we
devised a plan to “clean out the safe and stay safe.” We were
inventory heavy on every level. Our attention turned to an under
developed and under utilized website in hopes of providing enough
income to carry us through…..through what? How long was this
going to go on?
Like everything I do, I underestimated the learning curve. We ran
sales of discontinued inventory and sample collections and we
began offering flash sales on collections that would never
normally be reduced. In fact, they are usually sold out.
To our great relief, we succeeded and even had fun along the way.
Necessity and survival are great motivators.
That circles back to the question I am asked in almost every
interview. “How are you staying inspired?”
I quickly realized; inspiration can come from anywhere. If we
were to survive this huge shift, we had to learn a new way. Kyle,
(our digital media manager), jumped on trying to maximize a less
than perfect website. In the studio, Carey and Sarah took over
photographing and loading hundreds of pieces of jewelry for the
Stay Safe sale. The response was tremendous, and a renewed energy
and inspiration kicked in. Our inspiration for survival has zero
to do with design but has proven just as satisfying.
Motivated by the Future
And here we are, a full year later, still moving forward. There
has been much laughter, much frustration, and a good deal of
anxiety from time to time. There have been great gifts in this
I am very aware there is no going back to any “normal.” We are
all learning a new normal. Being home for a year isn’t normal for
me, let alone reinventing my business. The year, waking in my own
bed every morning, has been a huge gift.
The development of a new e-commerce website is in process.
(Thanks to an SBA disaster loan). In truth, we needed a new site
five years ago. This year gave me time I never would have taken
to put all of this in motion. It is extremely inspiring to see
each member of The Q Crew stretch in news ways to fit new job
requirements. I am proud of them and myself. In a time when so
many small businesses had to call it quits, we have survived. I
believe the worst of it is behind us.
Motivated by Myself
And now there is time to pursue my heart’s motivation and
inspiration – creating with stone and metal. I have restarted the
“one pair of earrings a day” goal and we have new collections
coming out in Spring 2021. The ships will sail again, and
we will be ready. Heck, we are ready now as there is inventory
sitting on those ships around the globe. As we diversify with
better e-commerce strategy, an updated website and new
collections, this time we will not have so many eggs in one
There is a saying, “You can’t always change a situation, but you
can learn to change your attitude.” Early in the year I wanted to
crawl in bed and stay there. And things are not perfect yet. I am
still battling some assumed Covid health issues. The business is
surviving on limited funds. Web development is maddening and
challenging. But we are OK. We are better than OK. No one is
truly ill and we all have roofs over our heads and food to eat.
And while the future is not clear, I have the faith and
confidence we will come through it and our best inspired days are
yet to come.
When the pandemic is over, The Q Crew will be ready for whatever
comes next (and so will the Q Crew's newest
employees...Luna and Tikki...pictured hard at work). We're
motivated to face the future. Together.
Drop us a line on Facebook and
let us know how you are staying motivated during the pandemic.
We'd love to hear from you.
We know that picking the perfect Valentine’s Day gift is complicated and we’re here to help. From classic Valentine’s gifts to grand gestures featuring unique Valentine’s day gifts for her, the possibilities are endless.
Lost one of your favorite earrings and miss wearing the pair? Great news. It’s completely OK — we’ll even say it’s stylish — to wear mismatched or different earrings. When it comes to playing with earring asymmetry there are a few easy rules to follow for a successful look.
Sign up to get the latest on sales, new releases and more …