After dedicating years to getting her children’s jewelry line in retail shops, Lodi resident Lani Osborn went from box stores to another kind of box — people’s computer screens.
Osborn, along with a business partner, created the idesign children’s jewelry line, which caught the attention of large retailers including Nordstrom and Macy’s. Their line was sold in stores until 2013, when the pair dissolved their partnership after 16 years.
According to Osborn, there were a lot of hours spent making the jewelry line a success and gathering the attention of buyers from retail stores.
“We reached a really high level of success with our jewelry line because we made jewelry for communions. We were going after an untapped market and filling a void that retailers knew they could fill,” Osborn said. “People think once you get your line into a store like Nordstrom you are set, but once you reach that level of success you have to work twice as hard, there is no slowing down.”
Osborn, whose background is in business, always had a passion for creativity and art. She first developed a passion for sewing when she was very young.
“My aunt would babysit me and she loved to sew, and I would help her whenever she watched me,” she said. “ My passion for this sort of stuff grew from there. It all grew from there.”
After getting her degree, Osborn got married and had children. As a homemaker she used her free time to work at home and began making jewelry.
“It started out small at first and then we began attending trade shows and, over time, we began networking and growing our inventory. But, over time, it just became too much,” she said.
According to Osborn, her business partner had a full-time job while they were growing their company, so both women were spread thin as orders came in.
“When you are selling to retailers, you get a lot of large orders, which is fine when you are a small scale company looking to grow, but when it is only two people, it gets overwhelming,” she said.
After the women dissolved their partnership, Osborn decided to continue making jewelry this time for adults because there is a lot of liability issues when working with children’s jewelry.
Osborn created an Etsy page in 2013 and created her own line L.A. Osborn Jewelry. Her minimalist line has garnered lots of attention on Etsy’s website. It is in the top 1% of jewelry shops on the site with more than 15,000 sales recorded.
According to Osborn, everything she sells she makes herself in her studio. All her pieces are crafted with high-quality materials.
“All the gold pieces are plated in gold and I use sterling silver. The jewelry I make is meant to last, unlike fashion jewelry, which usually breaks after two years,” she said.
Through Osborn’s Etsy page, she has created custom orders for many bridal parties and worked with style bloggers and built partnerships with small retailers, including boutique owners in France.
“I like using Etsy as a platform because it allows me to have a more scaled-back operation, and with custom orders, I get to have a personal relationship with my customers,” she said.