Experienced: Nikki Lundberg | Odyssey & Oddities

Fiesty. Thoughtful. Persistent. Brave. We’re constantly surrounded by so many inspiring entrepreneurs and as we are building our community of Dreambuilders we want to take time to showcase the real stories behind the brands. Not just the empowering soundbites… we want to share the candid, messy, vulnerable, hard, and victorious realities that these badasses face and overcome daily as they build something incredible.
This series of interviews is called “Experienced: Candid Interviews with our Favorite Entrepreneurs.”

Meet Nikki Lundberg…

We’re thrilled to start off this series with a banging interview with Nikki Lundberg, owner of Odyssey & Oddities! She creates stunning, affordable statement jewelry in Cleveland, Ohio. With a background in fashion and an eye for vintage, Nikki carries on the legacy of her mother and grandfather, both of whom loved and worked with gemstones. Her honor of form and care for the jewelry making process are evident in each design, as she claims that her style “is reminiscent of the excess of the 1970s, the Art Deco Movement, drag culture, and unusual colors and patterns found in nature.” Her brand consistently carries an air of nonchalant decadence and unphased grandeur. Each piece connects with its wearer, maximizes their look, and turns heads. It’s really amazing.

Check out what Nikki has to say about her journey…

Why do you love what you do?

Photo by Indie Foundry

I love making outrageous statement jewelry, it’s what I’ve been doing since the beginning. I love meeting customers who love and understand my jewelry and aesthetic. It makes all the work I put into my business worth it.

What made you take the leap of faith to start a business?

It was sort of a right place right time kind of thing, I knew I had a unique point of view design-wise, and wanted to have a creative outlet I could hopefully make money off of eventually At the time I was living with my parents and was able to afford the money to put into starting a small business.

Photo by Preserved Photography

What is your ultimate dream for your business?

My ultimate dream for my business is to be able to make a comfortable full-time living off of my designs and to expand more into home decor, sewn accessories, and my first love-clothing design.

What defines your success as a business owner?

I define success as a business owner by my customers being so happy with their purchases that they return time and time again, and referring others to me. Nothing fills me with more joy than a customer loving their O&O jewelry.

Share one challenge you have faced and how you overcame it.

I went from working full-time and balancing that with making pieces after work and doing shows on weekends. It was physically and creatively demanding, but I was able to make it work. About 7 months ago I decided to move from a full-time to a part-time job to dedicate more time to growing and nurturing Odyssey & Oddities. This was great during the holiday season, but it’s been the slow season most of 2018 and I’ve definitely had to learn how to budget and be smarter about what designs and shows I focus on to keep the lights on.

Anessa Charlotte Photography

What is the most important lesson you have learned about balancing your work life and your personal life?

This is something I’m getting better at. It’s easier now that I have more time to dedicate to my business, I have more time to dedicate to personal time. I used to have almost no social life, I would just go from work to home and only really ever went out when I had shows. The burnout seriously got real after a while. I was a crabby nightmare to be around and needed a major change so I could be happier with myself and my business. Now I try to make plans with friends ahead of time so I can budget my time wisely, and set aside time for self-care and personal reflection. It really is important to take time to rest. I’m an overachieving Virgo and struggle with feeling guilty about relaxation time.

What piece of advice would you give to another business owner regarding the work/life balance?

Definitely try to have set times to work and not work. If you work from home like I do, the line between work and play can get blurred, but I try to get the work I allot for the day done before relaxing. Making set plans ahead of time really does help.

Anything else you want to share?

Running a business is seriously tough! You really learn a lot about how dedicated you are, because if you aren’t dedicated it’s not gonna work out. Also, you probably aren’t going to make very much money for a long time, if only for the amount of money you’re putting into supplies, costs, and fees. Fortune smiles upon the stubborn and adaptable when it comes to running a business.

Check out Odyssey & Oddities stunning work today and support this woman who we admire so!

Anessa Charlotte Photography

Time to go shopping…

By Mallory Phillips

Mallory is a native of southwest Florida where she was raised and homeschooled for 18 years. Her unique, personalized and independent education continued in college at the Fashion Institute of Design and Merchandising (FIDM) in Los Angeles where she graduated with an honors degree in Visual Communications. Planning events and creative projects began early in Mallory’s life. As a teenager she was creating programs for her community, coordinating local concerts and fundraisers, participating in international internships and running conferences for national organizations. This passion to help others through “outside-the-box” solutions began to make an impact in Los Angeles as she worked freelance for international non-profit organizations, Beverly Hills corporations, marketing firms and Hollywood event planners. In 2013 Mallory, along with two partners, opened an event planning company, which she auspiciously ran until 2015. During her 4 years in Los Angeles she gained a strong and distinct perspective that led to a remarkable aptitude for marketing. In the Fall of 2015, she decided to step out on her own and pursue her growing passion for marketing in Cleveland: The Land of Dreams.

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