Q&A: Lauren Michaels of Custom Jewelry Site Sheyna


Sheyna

Both online monthly accessories clubs and design-it-yourself web sites are having a moment, so it seems only natural that eventually a start-up would come along and combine the two.  With a digital drag-and-drop sketchpad for creating custom looks set alongside a piece-per-month jewelry club, new e-tailer Sheyna does just that.

Sheyna offers a variety of ways to shop for jewelry.

In keeping with their goal to meet customers’ needs in a variety of ways, the company works with over 500 designers to offer 115 million possible different aesthetic combinations (no, really).  And with prices ranging from five dollars to $5000, it’s probably safe to say they offer something for everyone (and here’s some even better news — the site is offering High Low readers ten percent off for the next month.  Just enter the code Sheyna10 at checkout).  We sat down with Lauren Michaels, Sheyna’s manager of marketing, to learn more:

The High Low: Sheyna is divided between straightforward online retail, a design-your-own component, and a monthly jewelry club.  How did you decide to operate all three forms of online retail side-by-side?

Lauren Michaels:  We wanted to create a fun platform for our users that would provide them with unique ways to shop for jewelry. These components allow customers to browse our shop of great designs, create their own pieces or to join our exclusive club for great deals and discounts.

HL
: Between the three, do customers tend to skew one way or the other in terms of which they use more?  Is there a difference when it comes to how men and women shop the site?

LM:  Many of our customers love to shop the designs made by our community of designers and custom pieces based on these items, while there are a plentiful amount of users who love letting their imagination flow and create lots of jewelry pieces. The men tend to look for gifts, whether it be for an anniversary or holiday, and the women love finding pieces to match their outfits and personal style!

A faux-amethyst necklace, one of Sheyna’s most popular pieces.

HL
: You offer a great range of materials — what are the most popular?

LM:  Big stones, charms and colorful gems are favorites of our customers!  Some of our most popular pieces include the Only Blue earrings, Red Onyx earrings, a gold and turquoise bracelet, and the Amethyst Delight necklace.

HL
: How do you find the artisans with whom you work?

LM:  We have direct partnerships with skilled artisans around the world who love making jewelry and having all the designs come to life. We employ local artisans who are located in the same workshops where the jewelry is made, and the rest of us visit [them] frequently.

Sheyna’s digital sketchpad lets customers easily design their own looks.

HL:  Are Sheyna’s shoppers and the designers or artisans ever in direct contact with one another?

LM:  Shoppers and designers are usually not in direct contact through the site, but love to talk through social platforms such as Facebook, Twitter and YouTube.

HL
: Where do you see Sheyna going next?

LM:  The best thing about launching a business like Sheyna is seeing the designs, meeting users, and hearing from customers who get to see their designs come to life. We want to make sure we are always providing them with the tools and materials for everyone to make the best designs. This includes creating tools, adding new components, and providing assistance to new designers.


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