Every month, we feature a Fabulous Female whose business savvy and confidence inspires us. We believe in supporting fellow female entrepreneurs and their incredible business ventures. If you know of a Fabulous Female whose story deserves to be told, please email us to nominate them.
This month, we are excited to feature Rachael Hatala, owner and designer of Laughing Sparrow, as our Fabulous Female. We are even more delighted to announce our recent collaboration with Rachael! Laughing Sparrow has created an exclusive line of delicate jewelry for our customers, inspired by our Carolily Rose . It was an absolute delight to work with Rachael and Laughing Sparrow and we look forward to future collaborations.
Please introduce yourself and tell us about Laughing Sparrow.
Hello, I’m Rachael Hatala, the creator of Laughing Sparrow. Laughing Sparrow is a modern and minimalistic jewelry line that I have designed and make in my studio in the historic brewery district of Sapperton in New Westminster BC. I work primarily in recycled sterling silver and ethically sourced gemstones.
When did you know you wanted to be an entrepreneur?
I have always loved making things. As a child I did embroidery, sewing, knitting and lots and lots of beadwork. I remember someone asking me at a very young age what I wanted to be when I grew up to which I replied “I don't know! I’m only 6. But I want to do something I love and get payed for it!” At the age of 12 I was selling my wire wrapped sea glass creations in my grandmother's store on Mayne Island. In my 20’s I took my first silversmithing class and would wear my latest designs to my waitressing job, where my customers would literally buy my work right off of me. After the birth on my daughter in 2013 I dreaded the idea of returning to the service industry and decided to take the plunge to becoming a full time jeweller. I work 7 days a week on my business and have never been busier, more stressed...or happier in my life!
What were your steps to make your idea/dream become a reality?
To be honest I never really had a concrete plan. As new challenges and situations arise I embrace them and figure it out as I go. The scariest part was jumping in full time without any sort of safety net. Not succeeding just wasn't an option.
How do you differentiate yourself and your company?
I think when someone is truly passionate and loves what they are doing, they automatically stand out in the crowd. I make each piece of jewellery by hand in very small batches and pay close attention to detail and quality. I've been asked many times why I don't hire someone to do production for me and the answer is that I simply love making each piece. I think it’s that love that people feel and see when they buy a piece of jewellery from me.
How do you balance family and career?
Thats a good one, and something I’m always working on. It's easy for me to get super wrapped up in my work and never take a moment to remember why I am doing it. I was talking to a friend recently about feeling guilty that my 3 year old daughter is at daycare and she reminded me that I am teaching Sofia to be a successful strong woman who is following her dreams. I do keep at least 1 day a week that is exclusively for family time, and make sure that we all communicate. I wish I could say that I leave all my work at the studio, but my dining room table will call me out as a liar!
When struggling with a challenge, how do you overcome the challenge?
I make lists. Sometimes I make lists of my lists! I find that taking the time to write everything out and break it down into small manageable tasks that I can check off helps me to feel less overwhelmed and to focus less on the thing that feels unattainable or unmanageable. I will admit though that sometimes I get overwhelmed by my list. That's when I know I need to take a breather and usually can find some clarity by doing something else for a bit.
What is the most rewarding aspects of being a female entrepreneur?
I think knowing that my daughter will grow up knowing that she can do anything she puts her mind to.
Where do you see yourself in 5 years?
In 5 years I would love to see my brand in stores across Canada and even the world. Hey dream big right!
How should our audience get in touch with you?
My website is a great resource for getting in touch with me. I am reachable by email, or you can make an appointment to visit me in my studio. There is also a calendar of all the markets and festivals I participate in, and a list of all the stores that are currently carrying my jewelry.
A special thank you to Owl & Lily Photography for the photos of Laughing Sparrow.