When did you set up your business and why?

I set up Pale Raven Jewellery in 2018 after a 17-year stint as a make-up artist. I had been taking jewellery classes for a long time at the School of Jewellery and wanted a change of career.

I always loved making things since childhood and loved the idea that if looked after properly, a piece of jewellery could last lifetimes.

We have three kids at home and not wanting to let any more time slip by, at age 37, I started up my new business venture.

I was nervous leaving years of make-up industry experience behind me and took a leap of faith, started my workshop and haven't looked back.

Can you explain your process?

I live in a wooded glen in Dublin, where there is no shortage of inspiration for me to indulge in. Surrounded by trees and nature and at night the sky is magical. Everything I make is inspired by what is around me at home.

I also love Irish myths and I make pieces influenced by the legends too.

Sarah Herbert of Pale Raven jewellery.

I use some traditional techniques, such as forging metal and wax carving, as well as some other techniques such as melting metal to give a molten, relic-like feel.

I love making my silver and gold jewellery look ancient and a little worn or beaten, albeit with a polish and sparkle.

I add texture to a lot of the pieces to give a feeling of them “being here before”.

What is your best-seller?

My best sellers are the Molten Moon necklaces. I think humans have always and forever will have a lovely fascination with the moon and stars.

Sarah Herbert is inspired by the sun, moon and the stars in her work.

We constantly study, draw, photograph and make art of what's up there. I love my moons.

I have great fun melting their bumpy textured moonscape and craters on their lunar surfaces. It's very satisfying work making them this way, I love it.

What is it about your business that brings you joy?

One of the biggest pros with working in jewellery is the joy it brings to the people I make it for.

So many things to celebrate and occasions to be marked: birthdays, engagement rings, promise rings, wedding rings.

But more and more these days, people are gifting themselves a piece of jewellery if they get promoted at work, surviving illness, to mark the birth of a child or the passing of a loved one - or just because they fancy something special for themselves.

The journeys and milestones are endless. It’s fantastic to help tell the story of my client and to know you have made something they are in love with. It’s very rewarding.

What are your hopes for 2024?

I would love Pale Raven Jewellery to get her name out there even more for 2024 in Ireland.

I love doing what I do and as a small independent business, it’s really important to be visible out there, in order to survive and grow.

The journey has been an adventure so far: so many stories to tell, lessons learned and more creations to make - I love telling the Pale Raven story.

What advice would you give to another start-up?

If anyone is starting up a new business or thinking of it, I say do it if they are passionate about what they want to start their business in.

I have always felt that even if it “doesn't work out”, it will have been better than being too careful and not doing it at all, not knowing and regretting not pursuing it.

Start by dipping your toe in and see how it can be done. On a major upside, starting small and growing over time is a great way not to make too many terrible financial mistakes and investments, as a huge amount is learned along the way.

And persevere like crazy - never give up on the dream.

Visit https://paleravenjewellery.com.

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