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The Accidental Artisan – Part 2

Posted by Rachael Jessup on

Fast-forward one year – 2010, and our little family of four, and a dog, landed in Nova Scotia.

After setting up home in our rented house, the boys and I hit the local baby groups. They needed to play and I needed to meet new people. And this, my dear readers, is where me and my big mouth launched Sand Dollar Silver – accidentally!

During one of our ramblings at playgroup, I asked one of my new friends where she got anything personalized for her children, as they had unique names and spellings. She said that if she needed anything personalized she ordered it from the US. There must be somebody local who could make such things for her? And so my big-mouth, can-do attitude took over - “I can make that”, I still remember myself saying. And so I had my first order.

I set up a small studio with the tools I had brought with me from the UK and created some more silver jewellery. I put these up on Facebook to gauge reaction. I sold half of the pieces I put up and took orders for eight more personalized pieces. I would love to say that the name "Sand Dollar Silver" came from a long, thought-out process and has mystical meanings; however the truth is less exciting. In those early days I needed to order more silver and was asked for a business name. In the short time that we'd been here I'd become fascinated by sand dollars and the elusive hunt for them. And so Sand Dollar Silver was born.

Less than 3 months later, I started offering silver fingerprints and was approaching baby stores to set up pop-up shops. Five years later, we now include hand, foot, paw, and nose prints and in March are adding a new product line to Sand Dollar Silver (Newsletter subscribers will get the first sneak-peak – sign up at

I loved my job in human resources as I'm one of those people that likes to help others, though I have never thought I was creative. But in the last five years, since starting Sand Dollar Silver, I have learnt so much more about myself.

I may be an accidental artisan and still can't believe it most days, but I wouldn't change it for the world.