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January 4, 2013     Cape Gazette
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Cape Gazette Business & Real Estate FRIDAY, JANUARY 4 - MONDAY, JANUARY 7, 2013 33 Online business success for Del. resident Mother-daughter team takes jewelry design international By Molly MacMillan mollymac@capegazette.com Sandy Bodeau said she didn't know what she was in for when she started selling her jewelry designs online. A former political staffer, full- time student and wife, Bodeau convinced a retired fashion de- signer in Spain - her mother - to get involved, and the pair created two online iewelry stores. As news spread through tweets and social media, the business began to take on a life of its own, she said. "It just happened by chance really; we didn't mean to create the business," Bodeau said. "I had been working in politics for years, and I took a year off. I've always been into fashion. My mom is a fashion designer in Spain, and I found myself with all this free time, and so I started making some jewelry." The jewelry drew the interest of friends, and after she taught her mother to make a couple of her designs, Bodeau, a Smyrna resident, said the team decided for fun they would launch an online business in Spain: www.siraymaraspain.com. 't first we thought it was go- ing to be kind of a fun thing to do and make a few bracelets for some friends, but in a month we couldn't keep up," she said. Keeping potential shoppers updated through Facebook fan posts and tweets, Bodeau said, she was able to continue grow- ing the online jewelry store and soon launched another busi- ness: www.siramarausa.com. With jewelry designs tailored to American tastes, she said, a majority of the business' expo- sure now stems from the web- sites such as Pintrest and the support of fashion bloggers like Tara Kucker, the central New Jersey writer behind www.mixandmatchfashion.com. Kucker said she launched her blog nearly two-and-a-half years ago after she started reading fashion blogs and decided she should launch her own. The blogger said she started her per- sonal style blog to show women they can have fun with their wardrobe at home and in many business environments as well. Kucker said she likes to incor- porate Sira & Mara jewelry into outfits she shows on her blog, and the partnership with Bodeau has been mutually ben- eficial to both websites. "I love Sira & Mara jewelry because it is.on trend, beautiful, and most of all, extremely af- fordable," Kucker said. "They are also constantly coming out with new designs, which keeps things interesting." As one of nearly 25 bloggers One of the best-selling necklace de- signs at Sira &. Mara USA. that feature Sira & Mara jewelry, Kucker's blog feeds traffic to Sira & Mara daily. With two to three features in fashion blogs each week plus other exposure in social networks, the designer said business has grown from 150 orders each month to nearly 600. "We just taught ourselves and got ideas from the web; I didn't study this for sure. My morn has the vision for creating, an she knows how to draw very well. We put our heads together, and we just did it," Bodeau said. "It was a creative process. It was not a result of formal training." With so much volume, the mother-daughter team that for- merly ran the entire business from manufacturing to promo- tion and marketing online was recently forced to hire out for manufacturing and readjust their lives to the unexpected twist of fate. While she started the busi- SUBMITTED PHOTOS SANDY BODEAU, designer andowner of SiraMara USA jewelry, said her busi- ness success has been largely due to the power of social networking online. ness when she returned to school after taking time off from politics, Boudeau said with the newfound success of her busi- ness, it may be more than a year before she can return. "It was very unexpected. It was not intentional; it was more of a thing to do with my mom. It was not to make money," she said. "My plan was not that. I was wanting to return to politics, but I think not now. I may return, but for now, this is my full-time job." Sira & Mara USA Jewelry is available at www.siramara usa.corn, and Spanish selections are available at www.siraymaras- pain.com. What's cookin' at the breweries? truly accomplished A chef must have a knack for knowing what ingredients can be combined into a happy expe- rience on the palate. Culinary education can develop tech- nique, skill and perhaps even a philosophy, but like perfect pitch for a musician, the sixth sense for knowing what tastes good with what is'beyond the realm of mere training. That indefinable art separates the greats from the not-so- greats, and it's no longer just the province of the kitchen. Fruits, spices, vegetables and savory in- gredients are now being enlisted into the magical world of beer making. Small and medium-size craft breweries work hard to as- semble the most unlikely com- ponents to create new adven- tures in flavor. I recently attended a beer pairing at Matt's Fish Camp for the very young and very talent- ed Tr6egs Brewery located in Hershey, Pa. Co-owner and beer savant Chris Trogner, barely out of his teenage years (of course, pretty much everybody seems like a teenager to me...) intro- duced us to some of TrSegs' lat- est creations. This year's seasonal offer- ing is Mad Elf Ale. Sweet and sour cherries, honey and chocolate malt mingle into a potent (U per- Chris Trogner cent!) brew that certainly ain't yo' momma's PBR. While having dinner last week at Pick- led Pig Pub I was delighted to see the Mad Elf on the menu. Af- ter a couple of glasses, Ido be- lieve I spotted a few elves of my own out in the parking lot. I've made so many good friends in the restaurant busi- ness here at the beach, and a couple of the nicest are Karen Stauffer and Kevin Reading at Abbott's Grill in Milford. A cou- ple of months ago, they honored me with an invitation to judge a Dogfish Head beer pairing throwdown. Several of the area's top chefs were tasked with craft- Continued on page 34 BOB YESBEK PHOTOS TOMMY LONG'S SAH'TEA DAWGslider responded well to a dollop of hot deli mustard.