An invitation to meet our new sellers...
We’ve recently had several amazing sellers join our fab Cheerfully Given seller community so thought we’d take the time to introduce them and show off their inspiring products.
We’re thrilled to spend some time with Ruth Hall from Streten (based in Hampshire) today, and find out a bit more about her love of designing bespoke jewellery!
Ruth, it’s great to be able to chat with you today - welcome to the Cheerfully Given seller community! Starting (almost) at the beginning - how did you get into jewellery designing? Has it always been a passion of yours?
Hi Becky! Thanks so much. Having had health issues since I was teenager and struggling to hold down a full time job, I decided to use my creativity and turned a hobby into a business, five years ago.
I initially started making beaded jewellery, but after discovering hand stamping, which I fell in love with, I decided to focus on that. Three years later, I then made the decision to work with sterling silver, in order to create high quality, special pieces. I love designing jewellery that I know will be meaningful to the recipient!
That’s got to be pretty special, knowing you’re designing a piece of jewellery celebrating part of someone’s story.
I do receive lovely feedback, particularly with my Christian jewellery. Reviews like the following from a recent customer are precious to me: ‘This is absolutely perfect! I wanted a constant reminder of the wisdom of Proverbs 3:5 and this is just right! It is exceptional quality and absolutely beautiful.’ It’s great to know I have a purpose in creating pieces to encourage others.
Do you have a favourite piece or is it hard to choose?
Not Christian related, but I love my teapot earrings (available on the Streten website)! This was actually a design created by me and my Dad! They are quirky and I love that we created them together.
That’s sweet. Apart from teapots, what inspires your creativity?
A cliché, but I absolutely love being out in God's creation. I'm reminded of verses and prompted by the beauty that I see. I'm sure God sends me squirrels on my walks; He sends me one most days! I'm reminded that His eye is on me, just as His eye is on the sparrow.
Been meaning to ask: Streten is quite an unusual name, what made you pick it for your shop? I’m hoping there’s a story behind it!
Family are so special to me, I really wanted to feature my family on my website, and Streten is an old family surname. I couldn't use my Mum's maiden name as that is 'Love', so that wouldn't stand out as a brand!
My website features my late Grandpa in his car, my late Grandma, late Great Great Grandma, my Mum, my Nan (who is now 93, and I am very close to), and me as a little chubby baby. I also used a letter my late Grandad wrote as a prop for a few items. It's nice to keep things personal!
People often buy my jewellery for family members too as keepsakes; ‘I have a ‘family’ collection on my website, so there is a relevance there too. To represent a Christian foundation (though subtle!) I wanted to make the 't's stand out so used a font that emphasised a cross shape for those.
I knew there would be a good story, and those photos are so sweet! Before I get sidetracked into family history, can you share how you have been able to take your faith and tie it into your business and creativity?
I'm blessed to be able to encourage people through my 'Christian' collection of my jewellery business. I create bracelets and necklaces with bible verses on, for both men and women, and love to know that people are being encouraged daily of God's truths. Even a simple word on a necklace can lift someone up - I love that God can use my little business to help others.
I do also sell miscarriage/remembrance necklaces; receiving an order for one of these makes me sad, but I am able to pray for the recipient as I create their order.
I once had a customer place an order, and I just knew she was going to cancel it. Sure enough, she did, and I sent her a compassionate message to say I was sorry that she/someone close to her was going through this difficult time. We then had a correspondence and I was able to witness to her, and she seemed to come back to the Lord! Praise God that He works in all things. This was a customer from Amazon, and not one of my Christian pieces!
We love hearing about how God can use seemingly insignificant items and work through them!
Thank you for sharing with us today, Ruth.
To find out more about Streten, you can go to Ruth Hall's Cheerfully Given shop here.