We’re Open: Mineral + Mine
In our continued effort to keep the local residents informed on which businesses remain open, The Aspen Times has started the “We’re Open” feature to profile local businesses working through the coronavirus crisis. We want to connect consumers with the work businesses are doing to stay open.
To be featured as a business profile through the month of June, email staff reporter Austin Colbert at firstname.lastname@example.org for more information.
Business name: Mineral + Mine
Address: 110 E. Hallam St., Studio 101 (located in Red Brick Center for the Arts)
Social media: @mineralandmine (Instagram and Facebook)
Aspen Times: How have you gotten creative during this time? What have you done to keep your customers engaged?
Mineral + Mine owner Kate Flynn: At first when everything shut down I had a hard time finding creative energy; however, I did break my ankle two weeks before the pandemic started, so that was part of my situation that made things extra tough. Thankfully the Red Brick, where my jewelry studio is located, has remained accessible to tenants throughout the pandemic. Once I became a bit more mobile following my ankle surgery, I committed to coming into the studio every day, even though many of my sales avenues had been shut down (this included the closing of all the physical stores I sell to, and eventually the announcement that the Aspen farmers market would not be allowing its artisan vendors to have booths at this time). Though I didn’t have my normal steady to-do list of restocking and orders, I dedicated this slower time to trying new techniques, perfecting more difficult ones, and diving into parts of my business that needed some overdue attention. This refocusing included a higher level of photography of my pieces and process, which in turn helped my efforts to reach customers on social media and newsletters. To keep customers engaged, I’ve put in a lot of time to showcase my work and process on social media. Even if they’re not buying, I wanted to show I’m still here working. I also found motivation by fundraising for programs supporting frontline workers, and gifting jewelry to doctors, nurses and hospital staff.
AT: What’s the most important thing the community can do to support you?
MM: Continue to shop local for gifts and yourself, if you can! My website is open, and I’m responsive on my email if you need help buying a gift or would like to shop in person. I am based out of the Red Brick and we are allowed to have social distanced client meetings on our spacious front lawn. If you have some sense of what you’re looking for, I can bring a selection of jewelry out to the lawn in a tray for browsing. If you’re not shopping for anything right now, the best way to support my business (and other small and local businesses) is to follow my social media pages and engage with my posts.
AT: Where can we find your most current offerings and updates?
MM: Social media! I post daily on Instagram and Facebook. As the world reopens and events start to become possible again, this is where I will announce any markets, fairs, etc, that I will be participating in. You can also sign up for my email list on my website. I send infrequent, relevant emails regarding new jewelry pieces, my creative process and rare sales.
AT: What has been the best customer experience or comment you’ve had since the crisis started?
MM: I appreciate my customers who continued to shop with me when it felt like the world was closed, and Amazon was easier. I’ve had some locals continue to reach out to me for presents, and to shop for themselves. That support has been deeply appreciated. I’m honored to know my jewelry is being given as gifts and bringing smiles to peoples’ faces during this difficult time.
AT: Is there anything else you’d like to add regarding your business during the pandemic?
MM: I’m pursuing avenues for social distanced, outdoor, market-style shopping opportunities in the Aspen area for the coming months. I feel strongly that both local artists and the greater community need safe events to look forward to, and ways to support each other. Follow my social media to stay in the know!
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