This month, we caught up with Allison Wafer of Silver Fingerprint Limited, who trade as Recollections Jewellery.
What does Silver Fingerprint do?
We manufacture memorial jewellery. Our products capture something very personal from somebody who’s passed away. This can be a fingerprint, some of their handwriting, or some ashes. We know that the product isn’t for everybody and that’s why we brought in capturing somebody’s handwriting. Most people have a birthday card or something with somebody’s writing on. We can prevent it from ruin by capturing it in solid gold or silver.
Why did you start the business?
That’s a long story! I was previously an accountant and worked with Jon at Coopers and Lybrand in the 1990s. I then moved to work for one of Coopers & Lybrand’s clients. I travelled the world but worked far too many hours, so I decided I wanted to do something a little more creative. Unfortunately, it just wasn’t the right time. Back in 2004 we were caught up in the Tsunami, so my husband and I decided to just set up our own business. My husband was an electrician, and I was an accountant, so it was a risk giving up our well-paid jobs.
We decided to set up a franchise. We sold our products to Selfridges and Debenhams and it did very well! It was in the keepsake memorabilia market too. We had come across some fingerprint jewellery being done badly and thought if we could do it better and have good distribution routes, we could move it out of retail and into funeral care. So, we did just that!
Over the next four years, we spent time looking into technologies and getting the process right to take it into market. We did lots of testing and got in with some big players in the funeral market. We sold the franchise and focused on this side of the business.
What is the best bit about running the business?
The day-to-day running of the business as there is a variety of challenges. At the minute, I’m focused on growing the business on the sales and marketing side. However, if I’m at the studio, I could be polishing some jewellery. I could then be on the phone arranging a meeting that could improve our sales by £1 million!
What is the biggest lesson?
Have a plan and stick to it. Don’t be scared to change the plan along the way but stick to it.
What services do you get from JDA?
Even though I’m a Chartered Accountant, I value the services because things always get done on a timely basis. Payroll is the hassle I can do without and this is all taken care of, especially when it comes to furlough. I also have tax advice. Having somebody else who is really good at it means I can hand it over to them and focus on the business.
What do you do outside of work?
Spend time with my husband, who I see every day as I do work with him as well. I’m into training, especially in the gym and going to CrossFit. I like visiting different places – I like being by the coast in Torquay. I spend some time painting and drawing although there isn’t much time for that now!
You can take a look at Allison’s jewellery at www.recollectionsjewellery.co.uk
This article was taken from our latest JDA Accelerator Magazine – Spring 2021 edition. You can download this by clicking the below button. Thank you.
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