This month, Eleanor Buckley had the opportunity to interview 21-year-old creative and entrepreneur Peach Doble who runs her own online jewellery brand Jelly Pêche, alongside studying illustration at Kingston University.
Peach makes and designs every piece from scratch, supplying individuals with a kaleidoscope of vibrant, colourful jewellery made to order. She specialises particularly in headdresses and earrings for festivals and parties, or just a vibrant eye-catching accessory for your day-to-day look. Each piece screams of colour and life and creates that scintillating radiant sparkle element to your outfit.
Since starting Jelly Pêche in 2015, Peach has created jewellery for a variety of ages, selling on online platforms Depop and Etsy, and publicising her new designs to her followers on her social media feeds. Through her online following she has been asked to accessorise fashion shoots in magazines, online and even on TV, expanding her brand even further. How does one manage to balance an ever-growing want for stock alongside university? Read more to see how Peach does it…
1.What first inspired you to start Jelly Peche?
I’ve always been obsessed with jewellery, the bigger and the more colourful the better! I realised I had accumulated this mad collection of jewellery but sometimes I couldn’t find exactly what I wanted. I had loads of broken and odd bits, and my Dad’s a jeweller so I could always find little nick-nacks around the house, so I just began making my own. At Kingston they often have design fairs where you can come and sell things you’ve made, so I went along with about 20 pairs of earrings and sold out within a couple hours! I decided I wanted to make my business personal and unique by allowing customers to choose their own colours or style, or simply show me the outfit that they want it to go with. This means that each piece is completely bespoke and one-off, just what I was looking for!
2. How would you describe your job?
Super fun! I can work whenever and wherever I want to, whether it’s sat outside in the sun making pompoms or looping chains together on the train home. There’s something so freeing about working for yourself, especially when you’re studying at the same time. But when its just you, you also need to be really on it. You can’t just go on holiday for a week and forget about it, so my suitcase was spilling with yarn! I get really excited when I know I have a day completely free to mess about with beads and hoops and a couple pairs of pliers.
3. What is a typical day for you?
When I sit and make things, I usually spread everything all across my bed and my room until it becomes a proper ‘studio’…(messy). I’ll drink a giant cup of tea (honestly, like a pint of tea) whilst I check my new orders and social media accounts. Then I whack on some funky music and get making! Whenever I have extra time after making my orders, I try and make at least one experimental thing so that I can post new content on Instagram and Depop. I find this really important, as it keeps people interested and lets them know that I can make them whatever they want!
4. How do you find balancing studying alongside running your own business?
Actually surprisingly easy! When I’m stressed there’s nothing that helps more than making jewellery or winding pompoms, it’s so therapeutic. In this sense, they both balance each other perfectly. So many great things have come from doing both at the same time, from the Uni design fairs to meeting like-minded people! I got the chance to make all of the jewellery and accessories for Megan Angell’s graduate collection, which was then in the fashion show and nominated for the Boux Avenue award. With my University work portfolio mixed with my Business portfolio, I then landed myself the Design Internship at Tatty Devine! Art school allows you to make so many connections for your future; I don’t think Jelly Pêche would’ve come so far without it!
5. What has been the greatest achievement in your business’s career?
Hmm, I think my greatest achievement is yet to come! Through social media platforms I’ve met loads of inspiring people and come across some great opportunities, from being asked to have my things on TV to being featured in various small magazines. But I’ve got a long way to go.
6. What hopes do you have for Jelly Pêche in the future?
From the beginning I’ve just seen it just as a side-business to help me through university but I also love doing it as a hobby. But as it gets more and more popular, and people are recommended to me from all corners of the world I can see myself taking it further, but maybe in a different direction. I would love to be able to make a business that is eco-friendly and also puts something back into the community. So many accessory and fashion companies use cheap materials and means in order to provide a cheaper product. Many festival brands do the same but hike the prices up at festivals. I think in this era, people need to start thinking about their creative conscience! I’ve been speaking to a friend of mine about the future, building a business that benefits everybody and leaves the smallest footprint on the world that it can.
7. What kind of person do you need to be to run your own online business?
Incredibly motivated! Probably more so than me, because sometimes I put Jelly Pêche to the back of my mind! With start-up businesses you need to remember that a lot of the money you make will need to be invested back into your business in order to improve it, so you need to be passionate about what you make. You also need to be really creative and ready to keep creating new things. As soon as you begin making something that gets popular, many similar designers pop up on platforms such as Depop and make things a lot cheaper than yours. But don’t be put down when this happens, just stay headstrong and keep on experimenting and they wont be able to keep up!
8. Who is your creative inspiration and why?
Being surrounded by a family of creative and strong women is such an inspiration to me. My sister was the one who made me want to go to art school and my Mum is the one who gave me my entrepreneurial spirit! Alongside them, Harriet Vine (co-founder and creative director of Tatty Devine) has to be up there too. She began by selling little handmade things at Spitalfields market when she was at University almost 20 years ago. Most of my biggest inspirations are fabulous, creative women like Frida Kahlo, Yayoi Kusama, Solange Knowles, Vivienne Westwood and Charlotte Olympia. Frida Kahlo is the face of Jelly Pêche, adorned in flowers and pom-poms.
9. What advice would you give to students wanting to start their own business or brand?
Do it!!!!!!!! Uni is the best time to start your own business, and you’re more motivated to do it to help pay the bills! It’s the only place where you will be making invaluable connections on a day-to-day basis. Who knows, you may find your future business partner? Put yourself out there on social media, easy selling platforms like Depop or Etsy, and go to fairs. But most of all just enjoy what you do, and it’ll be a piece of cake!
By Ellie Buckley