During this exploratory journey, Jessica rediscovered her childhood love for arts and crafts. She enrolled in a weekend-long jewelry-making course, and the rest is history. “I went all in—I bought all the tools, of which there are many!” she says.
From that moment, she knew she’d found what she wanted to do, and Violet Moon Jewelry was born. Jessica makes all her pieces by hand, using sustainable metals and natural gemstones.
Jessica had been working toward leaving her day job and doing jewelry full-time for about four years when her entrepreneurial journey took an unexpected, fortuitous turn.
During the pandemic, she noticed the permanent jewelry trend taking off on TikTok. Realizing there was a gap she could fill, she started making and showcasing permanent jewelry on TikTok herself, and a few of her videos went viral.
“No one was really offering permanent jewelry at the time in L.A., and It just kind of took off from there,” she says. “When you searched ‘permanent jewelry, Los Angeles’ I was the top result for about a year or so, and that really helped get the ball rolling.”
The increased online visibility translated not only into higher website traffic and sales, but to some unique and fun influencer event bookings that pushed her brand even further into the spotlight.
As her business grew, Jessica wanted to make sure she was able to spend the bulk of her time doing what she loved: making beautiful pieces of jewelry and releasing collections.
“Along the way I listened to several entrepreneurial podcasts and audiobooks, just trying to learn as I go, and what I kept hearing was: ‘Do what lights you up—stay in your zone of genius.’ So for me, that’s not bookkeeping, because even though I have a financial background I’m not a professional,” she said. “And I’m so proud of this: I started working with Bench even before I quit my day job.”
Bench’s reporting helped her view her finances differently and let her see exactly where her money was going. When she invested in two welders and a jewelry bench, her team at Bench guided her through how to depreciate those investments over the next few years.
“As an entrepreneur, there are so many different hats that we wear. The customer service side of things, social media, jewelry sales. So it's so nice to have support in the area of bookkeeping and my taxes,” she said.
By letting Bench take care of her books, she can focus on differentiating Violet Moon in the crowded jewelry market.
“A lot more people have picked up the skill of permanent jewelry, so again I've had to find ways to set myself apart,” Jessica said. “Whether that's improving my customer experience, or finding different little ways to delight people who are celebrating fun things like their birthdays or anniversaries.”
Jessica hasn’t looked back since she started Violet Moon.
“I don’t have a backup plan, and I haven’t since I started the business,” she says. “When I was a kid, I wanted to be an artist, but I was discouraged because of what other people—adults—told me,” she said. “You know, ‘Artists don’t make any money.’ So I went into this steady career of being an actuary, and did not love it. So just trust yourself and know that you know what’s best for you.”