Women Who Rock: Jessie Atkins of Berg + Betts
Do you guys ever have a moment when you meet someone for the first time and you instantly want to become friends with that person? In the blogging community in edmonton I've had the pleasure of meeting some of the most amazing people and Jessie is definitely one of them. I had the absolute pleasure of meeting up with Jessie for a one on one chat about everything from business to boyfriends, where we come from and our future plans and before I even knew it almost two hours had flown by!
From the first time I met Jessie at my 204 Park x Poppy Barley summer party we clicked and I knew I needed to feature her in a Women Who Rock post. Jessie founded the sustainable watch brand Berg and Betts in 2013, selling casually on Etsy and launched bergandbetts.com in March of 2015. Every watch is made with love locally here in edmonton. (Yay #shoplocal!)
As Berg + Betts has just launched their first unisex round face watch (which is beyond gorgeous you guys, seriously) I thought the timing was perfect for a fun feature. Growing up with parents who reinforced the importance of sustainability Jessie was always crafting and DIY-ing accessories and fashion pieces for herself. After DIY-ing a watch as a gift for a friend the idea of creating a business out of making fashionable, sustainable and recycled leather watches came about and Berg + Betts was born!
Jessie along with two other local ladies hand make every watch (and necklace!) in her home studio right here in edmonton. Talk about girl power! Berg + Betts aims to help eliminate the excess waste in the leather industry by sourcing scrap leather from tanneries, factories and companies that would otherwise be thrown in the garbage and go to waste.
The first batch of B+ B watches used leftover materials from a local leather shop in edmonton. Jessie now has built relationships with Canadian brands such as Poppy Barley, Kimder handbags, Clos Custom Leather and Bacchus and Barley in addition to purchasing and salvaging scrap leather from companies in New York, Copenhagen, Toronto and Vancouver who are more than willing to sell their scrap leather to be turned into gorgeous handmade sustainable watches.
Her best piece of advice for women looking to start their own business, "As an entrepreneur, self doubt can be a daily struggle. Take the pressure of perfection off of yourself and prepare to learn and grow from your mistakes. Remain confident and view yourself as your business' biggest asset. Nobody is you."