Interested in starting your own entrepreneurial journey in jewelry but unsure what to expect? Then read up on our interview with Antonio Serafino, co-founder of Serafino, located in Montreal, QC, Canada.
What's your business, and who are your customers?
Serafino is a family jewelry business, my wife, Annegret, and I founded it in Montreal, Canada, in 1999. We create our own jewelry lines, and we can make your dream piece or repair or transform what you already own. Our customers are people seeking a striking jewelry creation for themselves or to gift, for everyday wear, or to underline one of life's special occasions. I have over 30 years of experience in jewelry making and can boast an exceptional team of employees.
Tell us about yourself
I was born in Naples, Italy. When I was a young man, I moved to Florence, where I worked in a lamp factory. I dreamed of becoming a goldsmith. When I met Annegret, a Swiss girl studying art restoration in Florence, she pushed me to make my dream come true. I got my certification as a master goldsmith from the Accademia Riachi in Florence. I apprenticed in the workshop of celebrated master jeweler Franco Franchi. And soon after, I opened my own jewelry studio/boutique in Florence.
In 1999, my wife and I decided to cross the ocean with our three little boys to establish ourselves in Montreal, Canada. Annegret and I teamed up to build our business as associates. Luckily, our vision clicked, and our business has been growing ever since.
My greatest satisfaction is when I see my customer’s face light up as she, he, or they try on one of our jewelry creations, be it custom-made for them or one of our ready-to-wear pieces. This is one of the most cherished moments in my workday.
What's your biggest accomplishment as a business owner?
I am immensely proud of my work team. We are six people working together in harmony. When problems arise, we solve them. Even though my wife and I are the decision-makers, we are part of the team and listen carefully to our employee’s suggestions and needs. Together, we strive to create beautiful jewelry and are all devoted to the happiness of our clients.
What's one of the hardest things that come with being a business owner?
As a creator and business owner, I wish I could foresee the future. Lately, the instability of material prices has been a constant problem. Sometimes I make an estimate, and within a few hours, the cost of gold has skyrocketed. We also need and foresee the change in buying habits in our ever-evolving society and follow the rhythm of progress.
What are the top tips you'd give to anyone looking to start, run and grow a business today?
- Figure out what the driving force is that motivates you. This will help you to stay focused on your goals. It will also help you with branding and marketing.
- Remain focused on your main goals, even if you diversify to keep a stable income.
- Take a management course before opening your business. You will still make mistakes but figuring everything out on your own, as we did, can be discouraging at times.
Is there anything else you'd like to share?
I wish all business owners the best of luck in these adventurous times!
Where can people find you and your business?
If you like what you've read here and have your own story as a solopreneur that you'd like to share, then email firstname.lastname@example.org; we'd love to feature your journey on these pages.
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