I’m back on track with the CoChic Cool Chick series, and today I’m featuring the talented Alicia Mohr, owner and jewelry designer of Chicago-based Ali’s Collection and Alicia Mohr Jewelry. Ali’s Collection was one of my favorite lines I carried at the boutique I previously owned, and it was a fan favorite, as well. Alicia’s designs are creative, bold and fun, making a plain white tee look like a million bucks. I should know; I have several of her pieces! Not only is Alicia artistic and creative, she is a super smart, successful businesswoman, as well. I am thrilled to share this savvy boss lady’s tips and advice with you!
Tell us about your business!
I have two lines:
Ali’s Collection focuses on gemstones with everything from bold statement necklaces, cuffs and rings to simple everyday pieces. You can find us on Instagram, Facebook and Twitter @aliscollection and shop our website www.aliscollection.com.
Alicia Mohr Jewelry is my new line that focuses on metals. Pieces are made using the lost wax casting method and molds are 3D printed in wax to make the process more efficient and cost effective. You can find us on Instagram and Facebook @aliciamohrjewelry and shop our website www.aliciamohrjewelry.com.
What made you decide to start your own business, and what drew you to jewelry making?
My parents are entrepreneurs and I have always had the desire to shape my own path. After college my plan was to learn by working for a big company before going out on my own. I was constantly looking for my “big idea”, but I kept coming back to my hobby, jewelry. I have always loved the transformative power of accessories and I thought I could bring unique designs to the table even though it was already a very saturated space. I wanted to focus on high quality materials and make the pieces affordable. And I wanted there to be a significant charity component.
Who is your ideal client?
I love people who are willing to take chances with accessories. There’s no such thing as too big or too bold in my opinion.
What do you love most about being an entrepreneur?
The things that I love the most about being an entrepreneur can also be the most frustrating aspects of the role. I love the flexibility, but I have to be careful to put parameters in place so I meet my goals. I love having complete control and the ability to shape my brand, but sometimes you just wish someone else could make the decisions for you and that everything didn’t rest on your shoulders. It’s always a double-edged sword.
What is your best piece of business advice?
Take in feedback, but don’t take it to heart. It is always easier for someone else to criticize your path. And while many mean well, it’s easy to lose your voice trying to please everyone and consider every detail. You will make tons of mistakes along the way, but it’s how you respond to your mistakes, not that you made them in the first place, that matters. Sometimes you have to move forward even if you feel that the piece, collection, book, website, etc. isn’t fully ready. I am a perfectionist at heart and this is the hardest part of being an entrepreneur for me – to just go for it and then respond and adapt later.
What is your proudest business moment to date?
It’s probably still the day that I landed my first retail account and realized that I could get paid for doing something I love.
Do you have any tricks of the trade you could share with us?
No matter what you do, be persistent. It’s rare to get a yes on the first try, but that doesn’t mean you don’t have something great to offer. Don’t give up and people will take notice.
In terms of applications, I’m hooked on Clipping Magic. It allows you to instantly remove image backgrounds online and it’s easier and cheaper than photo shop.
How would you describe your personal style?
Edgy elegance. I wear a lot of black and bold accessories.
What does being CoChic (comfortably chic) mean to you?
To me comfortably chic means being yourself. You should never try to be something you aren’t to impress others. When you are truly comfortable in an outfit and you have found your own style it shows and allows your confidence to shine through.
Anything else you’d like to share?
Ali’s Collection has a new collection launching this spring called Illumination. It features druzy stones in many different colors and settings. Some of these pieces can be seen on the models in this post.
Everything is beautiful! Thanks, Alicia, for sharing your inspiration for becoming a boss lady and business tips with us!