MORE AND MORE in the business realm, we are becoming witness to entrepreneurs launching into self-employment not just for the sole purpose of making money but entering in with a deep sense of purpose and passion; with a strong desire to disrupt their worlds and make a significant difference in the lives of others and Laura and Jess Sharp of Matters Speaking are no exception.
Jewellery designers, sisters, best friends and soul mates, Laura and Jess are women in business who are unapologetically doing it their way and in their own words creating a “collective of words, people and jewellery that is shared and created to inspire’. You will have seen their jewellery popping up everywhere as this is a brand that has been tagged as “one to watch” and because everyone loves a good story we caught up with the fabulous duo to find out a little about their journey and for them, what matters most and their pinch themselves moment with “VOGUE”!
SH: Tell us a little about your entrepreneurial journey and what eventually lead to your decision to leave your careers in the engineering and construction industries?
MS: We have spent a lifetime together day dreaming and discussing all the things that we should and could do, so our journey began when we were little. Whilst we had achieved significant success in our careers in that industry, our hearts were not entirely in it and we knew that there was more to life than that what we were living. So we decided to take the entrepreneurial leap of faith and begin Matters Speaking at night for it was to us, an accumulation of everything we have ever dreamt of. We created love in a hopeless place and it took us back to our childhood where we believed anything was possible. In that space and the courage to begin, Matters Speaking was born.
SH: Who have been your greatest cheerleaders along the way?
MS: Firstly, this would be each other. The love and support we provide each other helps us keep going and improving each day. Next would be our family. Our parents and partners have been there from the beginning and have always believed in us even at times we have doubted ourselves. They love us unconditionally and believe that we can do anything, and because of them we do.
SH: How important has social media been to the growth of your business?
MS: Without it, we would not be where we are today. Social media for us has been the best way to connect with people to tell our story on who we are, how we love and share our jewellery that is made with love. For any online store this is a crucial element of growing your business and connecting with your people. It is a community with endless opportunity.
SH: Jewellery is a very competitive space. What do you believe sets your product apart?
MS: All of our jewellery has a special meaning that matters. It is made for all woman regardless of what stage of life they are in, so that they can wear their love, like their heart on their sleeve. Each design is made with love and means something.
SH: What are the critical things that you do each day to keep yourself grounded and focused on your goals?
MS: Talking to one and other constantly. We both live on opposite sides of Australia at the moment so we spend hours on the phone together each day. Not only do we discuss every element of the daily operation of the business but we are always discussing ideas for the future. We are each others biggest mentors and motivators so communication is key. Remembering where and why we started always helps us to stay grounded as to us we will always just be two small town dreamers that have big dreams.
SH: HOW DO YOU SEE YOUR BRAND EVOLVING OVER THE NEXT THREE YEARS
MS: We wish to be bigger and better and to touch as many people as possible with our words and jewellery. 2017 is going to be a big year for Matters Speaking and we cannot wait to share more of our love that we are now planning. Each year we dream bigger and work harder. The best is yet to come.
SH: What is the most surprising thing that has transpired in your business since it’s inception?
MS: That we have created something that matters together in an extremely competitive industry in which we knew nothing and no one and how we have grown and evolved in such a short time. The love and support we have received has been overwhelming and we are proud of what we have achieved whilst juggling our other careers when we began and now a baby.
SH: Do you connect with other women in business to motivate and inspire you?
MS: We love women who support each other in life, love and business and believe that there needs to be more of it. We have been blessed in our life to be surrounded by inspiring, strong and kind women so it is something that we like to do and be in business also. We welcome people into our business as we would our homes for where you invest your love, you invest your life.
SH: What piece of advice would you give to other creatives who have a strong entrepreneurial spirit and desire to build their own business?
MS: Start and keep going. Believe in yourself and let your love shine through your business. Don’t be disappointed if things don’t happen overnight. From little things, big things grow. Trust in divine timing and give your business and each day your all. Every now and then stop and appreciate everything you have achieved as often we get so caught up in tomorrow, we forget to live in the opportunities and blessings of now.
SH: Tell us about the dynamics of working together – do you think it contributes to your strength as a brand?
MS: Absolutely. Our brand is a reflection of who we are and how we love. We are not only sisters but we are best friends. We both bring different elements to Matters Speaking but have the upmost respect and love for each other, what we do and what we give. We are two different people but are also one in so many ways and Matters Speaking is an extension of our family. We grew up in a small town together, travelled the world together, worked away in the mining and construction industry together and now do business together. Life and business is just better done with together.
SH: Who are your jewellery style icons?
MS: Our inspiration comes from women of all types. Our jewellery is created and shared to inspire to encourage women to own their reality without apology, live their dreams and wear their love, like their heart on their sleeve. This is where we draw our motivation and ideas from.
SH: Can you tell us what lies behind the name “Matters Speaking”?
MS: We love the quote ‘What lies before us, and what lies beneath us are tiny matters compared to what lies within us’ by Ralph Waldo Emerson and this was part of our inspiration. For us, Matters Speaking is about sharing and speaking about what matters and encouraging others to live their truth. We do this through our words in hope that we can connect with others and what matters to them.
Let’s go on a Speed date:
Lipstick or lipgloss: Lipstick, you can never beat a red one and there are so many amazing colours to choose from today.
Heels or flats: Heels as there is nothing like dancing in them all night then kicking them off in the morning.
Your favourite indulgence: Food! We love to love and love to eat!
Your favourite place to unwind: In our family home beside the ocean.
Date night outfit: Just some Matters Speaking jewellery.
Worst piece of advice anyone has ever given you? We stopped listening and just did our own thing.
Favourite device: IPhone! We would be lost without them for our business. Apples are life.
Biggest pinch yourself moment so far in the Matters Speaking journey? That we were selected and asked to be part of the Vogue Online Fashion Night coming up on the 26 October 2016. One word. VOGUE. We are still pinching ourselves.
The one thing you wish you had more of? Time! There is so much we wish to do in this lifetime together.
If your life had background music playing right now what would you be playing My Mama Told Me There Would Be Days Like This by Van Morrison.