Local Teen Sells Unique Handmade Accessories
Author: Mariam Zamri
Editor: Ziera Adurah
Source: @tinytypicalthings on Instagram
KUALA LUMPUR, 1st June - At only 18 years old, this girl has successfully managed to earn her own income by handcrafting unique, vibrant, and trendy jewelleries such as chunky resin rings, beaded necklaces, as well as accessories like resin jewellery trays, ashtrays, and phone straps.
Elena Chee Jia Ying, born and raised in Kuala Lumpur, began her business journey in February 2021 when she desperately wanted to buy similar types of rings, but they were only available overseas and they were expensive. Due to boredom during MCO, she then did her research and had found a way to handmake these jewelleries, and it had essentially motivated her to start her own business.
“Honestly, my main inspiration was me wanting to buy these rings overseas, but they were expensive. I was also bored as I’m currently on a gap year and it pushed me to start this business,” said Elena.
According to Elena, amidst doing her daily routine, she would easily envision ideas on how to design her jewelleries and accessories. The execution part would normally take her around 3 hours a day.
What makes her online business stand out compared to others is because she is amongst the first people to sell chunky resin rings locally. From designs displaying smiley faces to gigantic gumball hearts, it is the latest trend in jovial jewellery.
“At the time, there weren’t people selling them as they were unable to make them. As of right now, only two businesses are selling similar resin rings, but I know that they aren’t 100% handmade.
“They bought the base of the rings in bulk online instead of handmaking them, as to make these rings, you would need a mold and I handmade the molds,” she added.
Elena further explained that the whole production process of making resin is time-consuming as well as the after process, in the sense that she would spend a couple of hours polishing and sanding each individual ring. She had also shared a few of her struggles when interviewed by Nadi Bangi via Instagram direct message.
“I had to cope with the overwhelmingly high demand and low supply as all of my pieces are handmade. A few problems I had faced could range from improper mixing of formulas leading to a soft or defective ring. As I tend to make 5 to 6 rings each day with one portion of resin solution, it can be frustrating having to wait one whole day to find out that the 6 rings I made the night before were defective or soft, especially when many people are expecting more rings to be available during the next drop.
“It’s because resin takes 12 to 24 hours to cure,” she added.
Despite that, Elena expressed how happy she feels to know all of her hard work has paid off as her customers appreciate and love the items bought.
“My customers always update me once they’ve received their rings or when they style the rings and tag me in their posts. I get amazing responses and I feel connected to my customers,” she said.
All marketing content and packaging were designed by Elena herself. Her creativity has attracted teenagers and young adults online as she uses TikTok and YouTube as her main marketing tools. As TikTok is swarmed with Gen Z, she uses this advantage to promote her business.
Though in the future, Elena will have to stop her business temporarily as she will be furthering her studies in the UK.