Charice Worrell makes it and wears it. (Picture by Green Bananas Media.)
CHARICE WORRELL will be the first to tell you she was always a fashionista. So when she received a handmade bracelet for her birthday in 2010, she examined it and realised that she could make her own bracelets, earrings and necklaces.
“I started before I even knew there were tools for jewellery. My father is a carpenter. So I started making jewellery with carpentry tools and it went fromt here,” she recalled with laughter.
That was the beginning of Shaneecekies Designs and the bubbly businesswoman started crafting copper pieces for friends and family before making unique pieces for other people who requested them after seeing them worn by others.
“I told them that I didn’t sell them so I started giving jewellery as a gift. Then people were really pushing me saying ‘you really need to get out there. You’re wasting your talent, make it and sell it’. Then I started,” she told BARBADOS BUSINESS AUTHORITY.
She remembers going to the Holetown Festival with her daughter and taking time to really look at the jewellery on display. She asked some of the crafts people where to get the supplies, materials and tools and the “helpful ones” told her and she set about turning her hobby into a profession.
She registered the business name about a year or two after that, “it got really big, really fast”, and decided to name it after herself, her daughter and one of her biggest supporters, her best friend Kisha.
“I added her name because she was my to to person. She would try on the jewellery, she would advertise for me, tell me what kind of feedback she would get and if I’m not too sure about something I would ask her, so it was only fitting to include her into my business name,” Worrell said.
As word spread about the intricate designs she crafted, her best friend also helped her get jewellery into a Bridgetown store where it quickly sold out. Another friend, a swimsuit designer, asked her to help outfit models for a photo shoot, which she did.
“Then she was invited down to Trinidad for a fashion show and she showed them the pictures from the photo shoot. They asked if the jewellery was part of the package and she told them ‘of course’, then came to me and tried to talk me into going with her to the fashion show. I did it and we were in the newspaper down there and that was big for me too,” Worrell noted.
“Nikita, the singer, came to me about accessorising her and she did photo shoots with my stuff which was exciting. I also did stuff for Alison Hinds which was through another fashion show and I could’ve had Fantasia as a client. I met her on the beach and she was talking to me about my jewellery. I was wearing some of my jewellery and she commented and was freaking out when I told her I made it,” she said.
Worrell has never done any classes but she intends to enrol in one where she can work on beading as she now concentrates on wire wrapping and wire bending.
“It think it would be interesting to do beaded designs in my wire work rather than using beads or using pearls because I use the different media in my copper, stainless steel and sterling solver but it’s not a beaded design,” she explained.
She likes using copper because it does not tarnish and “stays how it is for a lifetime”. It is also easy to work with and she likes the challenge that custom borders brings.
Her plans are to develop a website so her international customers could see her new pieces and order them. She also wants to have more stores selling her jewellery.
“I want to add to the earrings so you can wear a full set; necklace, earrings, bracelet and bag. I will crochet a copper bag with the beading that goes with the earrings. I think that would be a unique touch to my line,” Worrell said. (Green Bananas Media)