Skye Anderton – Fashion Entrepreneur / Chief Dreamer
Fashion entrepreneur and founder of Ruby Olive jewellery store – Skye Anderton – shuns the title CEO in favour of Chief Dreamer.
It was focusing on her dreams that took Skye on a 16 year journey, from a stall at Brisbane’s Valley Markets to picking up the Telstra Young Business Woman 2014 award.
Along the way, Skye was lured by the security of working for London’s largest retailers, but a trip to the Serengeti reignited her dreams of becoming her own boss.
– Do you remember the first handmade creation you sold?
I remember it well…it was 1999 at the Valley Markets in Brusnwick St Brisbane. I got up in the morning at 3am, to line up at 4:30am to get a stall. It was the first ever time I was selling my handmade wares to the public. I was incredibly nervous, I just wanted to be able to sell enough to cover the $25 stall fee. I think I made $85 that day. I’d been to Reverse Garbage (a recycling place in Brisbane) and bought a bunch of very colourful striped vinyl, I made them into little Summer bags with bright handles and I sold them for $10 each (it probably cost me more to make them). A few weeks later I was walking down Adelaide street in the Brisbane City and spotted a girl carrying one of my bags… WOW! People actually liked them. That was such an awesome feeling!
-What lessons did you learn selling your wares at local markets?
You just need to start. I thought about it for such a long time, I thought it would be much harder than it actually was.
-You describe yourself as “Chief Dreamer”, how crucial is dream-chasing to your success?
In my world it’s essential. Dreams create excitement and energy and they drive your passions. If you don’t have dreams, how do you have goals and visions of how to make your life the best it can be.
-You wrote your business plan for Ruby Olive while camping in the Serengeti. Could you tell me a bit more about how this experience inspired you to start your own business?
On my way back from living overseas my husband and I travelled through Africa.
Everywhere I looked I could see so much inspiration – the colours and the textures were simply amazing.
While camping in the Serengeti National Park I decided to get some of these ideas down on paper and before I knew it I was planning my new venture in the back of my travel diary…my brain was working overtime.
–Working for yourself, was there ever a moment that you missed the security of working for London’s large retail buyers?
Never ever ever ever! Ever! I absolutely loved working in the fashion industry in London but I LOVE working for myself.
I wouldn’t change a thing.
There were certainly times when I doubted myself, but now I know that is part of the process of owning your own business.
-Who would you like to see wearing your products?
I love seeing everyone wearing my products… the Mum picking up her kids from school, the young professional walking into her swish offices, the quirky 55 year old walking out of the national gallery.
I also get a buzz from seeing my designs on newsreaders and celebrities – particularly when I know they’ve gone out and bought them themselves.
I love seeing women having fun with colour and being brave enough to make little quirky statements with their jewellery.
– Your products are ethically sourced and sustainable, how important is it for you as a business woman to contribute to society in this way?
Yes I am very passionate about creating a purposeful business – and in all areas of my business, from how the products are made and how I run my business, to who I want to inspire to create a more confident and uplifted life.
Ruby Olive is not just about products and what people wear but more importantly it’s about how they chose to live their life.
Ruby Olive creates affordable, distinctive and fun pieces that inspire confidence and inject shots of joyful energy into whoever wears them.
They celebrate traditional skills and artisan craftsmanship, creating sustainable products with a beautiful conscience and an ethical heart.
Check out their range online here http://rubyolive.com.au/