ST. LOUIS — Betsy Nacrelli started her jewelry business out of her St. Louis home in 2015 and now her designs are carried by 570 retailers including Nordstrom and the Home Shopping Network.
“I meet people and they say ‘That’s so cool you’re at Nordstrom,' and 'You’re so lucky,’ and I say ‘Well what you don’t know is that I probably sent 150 emails to Nordstrom before I heard back from that one merchandising director,’” said Nacrelli.
She said her goal when she first started the business, Collections by Joya, was to send about 100 emails per day to every retailer she could.
In 2017, the Home Shopping Network discovered her designs at a wholesale show. One year later, Nordstrom emailed back and started carrying Collections by Joya in their stores.
Before branching out as an entrepreneur, Nacrelli was in the furniture business.
“I traveled to wonderful places like Bali, Indonesia and Jaipur, India and I would always bring back jewelry from my trip,” she said.
Nacrelli’s friends started noticing her jewelry and asking if she would bring back jewelry for them when she went on her next trip. That’s when she says “a lightbulb went off.”
“I did a lot of research and I found there was a gap in the market between that fashion and fine jewelry. I was certainly at an age where I wanted more investment pieces so I could have real sterling silver, real natural gemstones, but not break the bank.”
That’s when Collections by Joya was born. It is a “For Women, By Women” company with products made by female artisans that gives back to women’s charities.