Last Saturday, I chatted with Kim Pauley, the founder of Shame on Jane - S&N's favorite place for personalized jewelry. I asked Kim all about where she got the inspiration for Shame on Jane and the guts to start her own business...right after we talked Fifty Shades of Grey and Magic Mike!
Kim Pauley: I have read Fifty Shades of Grey! Not only have I read it but I read it with my book club - how pathetic! Actually, it was the most fun book club we’ve ever had! Love it. Love it. Love it. My husband loves it.
Now, as to Ryan Gosling, if I could get a date with him, I would have gotten one for myself!
SHS: I saw on your picture with him that you said he looks like you’re the only woman in the world!
KP: He does! Of course, then he turned around and did the exact same thing to my mother! I thought SHAME! The perfect way to use shame actually when he looks at my mother the same way as he looked at me!
[Insert 15 minutes of Kim and I discussing how hot Ryan Gosling is and then of course the inevitable discussion of Magic Mike, which need not be recounted to all of you!!!]
SHS: So, Kim, as two former attorneys ourselves, we obviously connect to that part of your story. I’m assuming being a jewelry designer is more fun.
KP: SO much more fun. I was a trial attorney for New York City. Then, I had three kids and started teaching law, which I did for six years. And I was getting bored with it. My husband and I were always talking about starting our own business and how much fun it would be. Do you watch Shark Tank?
KP: We love it! People have such amazing ideas and it just seemed SO FUN but I literally had no idea how to get started. How do you take this incredible idea and turn it into something tangible?
So, finally, my husband was like, “Look, if you want to do this, do it! Don’t worry about making money at first or failing, just try.” And that just gave me the power to go out there without worrying about failing.
It was freeing.
SHS: So, where did the idea for the jewelry line come from?
KP: Well, I would sit down at night and make these long boring to do lists. Go to the grocery store. Go to the bank. I thought how awesome would it be if I could wear this list. Then I thought of the fun list. The list of things I WANTED to do. Make a reservation. Have fun! I knew the rings would have to be narrow so I could wear them with my other rings and I could just add them on as a way to remind myself and have fun.
SHS: We’ve been having a discussion on Salt & Nectar recently about “having it all” as a working mom and how you find balance, especially when you work from home. Running your own business gives you a lot of freedom but how do you make sure it doesn’t take over every second of your life?
KP: I’m slightly obsessed. What I do is I work at night a lot. That’s the best part of being able to work when you want and I don’t ever switch it off really. My kids are older and in school. So, I work when they are at school, when they nap, and at night whey they are in bed. I do take calls when they are around but you know it’s better than working outside the house full time that’s for sure.
SHS: What skills have you taken from your other jobs into running your own business - especially anything you’ve learned from being a mom?
KP: Well, moms have to have a sense of humor and that’s what my jewelry is all about. You’re isolated as mom and you have to find a group of friends. I don’t know what moms did before texting when you literally were by yourself all day long and didn’t have your friends at your fingertips. That’s what I wanted in my jewelry in a way. I wanted moms to be able to look down at their fingers and be laughing all day long.
SHS: Any advice for a mom out there thinking of starting her own business?
KP: First of all, DO it!
Second of all, I have this amazing network of moms - we all do - that has been more helpful than anything else. My mommy friends have been UNBELIEVABLE. We all make these friends at play group and birthday parties and traditional mom things. And for me, there has always been someone in the group that is helpful and knowledgable. We all come in to being a mom with skills so we’re ready to help. My accountant is a mommy friend. My business partner is a mommy friend. My babysitter works for the business as well. It’s just been incredible and I’ve really loved working with all of them.
SHS: That’s so wonderful! We’ve heard that again from mom entrepreneurs. Moms supporting moms, which is a perfect spot to end the interview I think.
Thank you so much for your time!
KP: Thank you!
~ Sarah Stewart Holland