Representing Love All Ways
Having never been exposed to the starving artist mentality, Mariele Ivy always knew she would be successful using her natural creative abilities. Growing up with an artistic, entrepreneurial father exposed her at a young age to creative pursuits that could support both a passion and a family.
Fast forward to 2012, Mariele was able to fully realize her vision by establishing her company, Young in the Mountains, an eco-conscious fine jewelry company specializing in engagement rings. After having dabbled in everything from ceramics to skateboard design, she decided to create a business that resonated with her values. Young in the Mountains uses socially conscious materials to create heirloom products representing love all ways, the ethos by which her company operates.
She is proud to lead a successful business in the creative field that supports her family, as well as providing five artists with full time, creative work. Part of her role as business owner is forming strategic vision of the company and finding new professional development opportunities for her and her team. One of these opportunities was through the Ice House Entrepreneur Development Training, a course that Colorado Lending Source offers to support pre-existing or early-stage businesses.
Read more on Mariele’s artistic and business journey...
Describe your experience with the Ice House Entrepreneur Development Training:
Working with Ice House was tremendously valuable as a way to have accountability with other entrepreneurs in a similar situation as me, but outside of my peer group. I enjoyed our assignments and reflections; we could easily take lessons and apply them to our businesses. The diversity and range of people in the class gave me other perspectives that I may have not thought of before.
What makes your company unique?
We specialize in engagement jewelry featuring conflict-free diamonds and recycled materials, but our main source of pride is using 100% American-mined inlaid stones, materials that are resonant with the southwest. We do this to ensure no children are involved in the production of our jewelry and that no wars are being funded. Using hyper-local materials allows us to create heirlooms that can be respected and loved.
What has helped you become so successful?
The aid to my success has been teamwork. Being an artist is very lonely; it’s a lot of time spent with your head down in a space where you’re bouncing ideas around silently. That’s good when you’re developing your skill, your craft, and your aesthetic, but eventually you have to start sharing your resources and ideas. Developing a team over the last two years has been the greatest financial and emotional success for me-being able to show up and be around people every day.
How does your company support the community?
Young in the Mountains supports the community by being an example of a woman led business with an all-female staff, working to make the most eco-friendly choices in everything that we offer, from the materials to the language that we use. We support love all ways, that’s become one of our most dear models. However you love and whoever you love, we will be able to help you represent that. I think the world needs more examples of non-judgmental creative businesses.
What has been your greatest inspiration?
My greatest inspiration in business is the ability to make any change I feel necessary. I am so grateful that I can show up and change what I don’t like. If something is hard, or unnecessarily difficult, I don’t have to continue to deal with it. I can creatively problem-solve my way around it; that way we can continue to show up, like what we do, and enjoy our day. That is one reason why I’m so grateful for being an entrepreneur.
Do you have any advice for other entrepreneurs or small business owners?
It’s important to set goals and to have a vision in your personal life and your business life. It’s not easy to think five years ahead-even a week ahead-but the more you can do to pave the way you’ll eventually start following that path without realizing it. Spending time creatively thinking about what you want and having a future vision will allow your day and life to naturally unfold in that way.