Everything you have done in your past has brought you to this very moment of reading our “About Us” page… A page about a business you have recently discovered but don’t know much about… but we’re more than just a ‘business’, I hate that word because it’s implies something so transactional, and we are more than that, we are people… people that are helping other people.
We’ve been around since 2009, but ELVIE in its current form really started in 2016. Before then we were COCO LIBERACE, a fashion jewellery label, well know for our statement jewellery. But people always came to us for our little handmade beaded bracelets, made from natural stones and that you could personalise by adding a charm or Saint medal of your choice. Different stones had different properties, and the charms had their own special meanings.
Our regular customers would always come in saying “I have a friend going through a difficult time, I need something to say …..” We would always manage to put something together but it was never 100% what the customer wanted to express. So we thought what could we do to really help our customers communicate what they wanted to say, wouldn’t it be great if the customers could just write what they wanted, like you do when you give someone a card, how fantastic would that be…
That’s essentially what led to the concept of offering our customers on the spot engraving, but it was more than that. Maybe it was the Saturn return for our business or something else in the stars, but we needed a change, there was a shift coming.
That’s when we also decided to rebrand and change our business name to ELVIE, our daughters name. Nothing more can express the love two people have for each other, than their child. Our daughter is a constant source of inspiration and love for us, so we knew it was right to name our business after her.
Anyway, that was two years ago, and our customers keep coming back and keep emailing us with beautiful feedback, giving us inspiration to keep going.
What We Offer
With the change to ELVIE, we were inspired to bring you our Monogram Collection. These pieces are designed by us and are engraved on the spot in our Queen Victoria Building store, no need to order and wait, you can see the piece being made on site. We had a vision for pieces that could be made with a special word that had meaning or inspiration. Jewellery that can be personalised by you.
Words and sayings have different meanings to different people , we wanted our customers to feel inspired by their jewellery, to have a special connection with their jewellery, not only to look beautiful but to have an special place in their heart.
When you come to our store, or shop online, you have a choice of beautiful simple pieces we’ve designed so you can personalise them with a message, word, name, letter, date, place, a memory… almost anything you want. Something to remind you of a special moment, or to give to someone as a keep sake. A personal gift, it can be as simple as an initial on a necklace, or a special message that tells that person exactly what they mean to you.
In store we engrave the pieces instantly, and online orders are generally posted out within 24 hours. It’s that quick. And the finish is amazing, we use the best engraving machine available.
We also offer a range of quality fashion jewellery, made from either stainless steel or sterling silver. Some pieces are designed by us, but we also offer collections from other Australian designers.
Our designs reflect our strong passion for beautiful quality accessories, all our pieces are still designed by us and made under our strict quality control.
Who are we?
Simply, we are John & Nicolle, a husband and wife team. We love what we do because it’s challenging and also rewarding.
It’s challenging because it just the two of use, we don’t have a huge team with a massive budget. Everything you see relating to our business is essentially from us. Writing this page, this whole website, our store, jewellery, images, packaging, business cards, etc. It all goes through us, sometimes we can’t do things the way we would like, or as quickly as we would like, but that’s just the reality of being a small business.
It’s rewarding because everyday we receive emails from customers saying how much that love our jewellery or that they gave a pieces as a gift and they friend just loved it. Everyday in the store we have a customer say how much they love our store, or that they’ve been looking for something just like this.
We love being a small business because, although we work harder and longer than we would in a regular job, we have the flexibility to work when and where we want. It means we can be there for our family when we need to be. Right now I am writing this on a Sunday afternoon, we had a great family BBQ and the kids are chilling on the lounge. I’m doing this now, so tomorrow morning I can take the kids to school. This page hasn’t been updated in over six months, and I’ll probably stay up late finishing it, but that’s part of being a small business.
The early years - “Started from the bottom now we’re here…”
So ELVIE is only a couple of years old, but we really started way back in 2009 as COCO LIBERACE.
At the time we both had corporate jobs, but John had lost his passion for what he did and was looking for a new challenge. John always had some harebrained scheme he wanted to start, and as he was surfing the web looking to buy Nicolle a present, he stumbled across a wholesaler for fashion jewellery and had the crazy idea of starting a online store as a side business.
Nicolle, the more sensible one (at times), didn’t think it was a good idea to invest money into this as she didn’t think it would last. So she suggested selling some hand made jewellery at the local markets to start with. She had always been a lover of fashion jewellery, she was the girl at school that made friendship bracelets for everyone. So she made some beaded bracelets and necklaces, and off they went to Glebe markets.
After a few months of doing the odd market, John decided he needed a break from his career to decided what he wanted to do. As it would happen, just as he was about to finish up, Nicolle’s company went under and she too was without a job. It was the universe giving them a push, they had to make this work or wouldn’t be able to pay the bills.
So one market went to four; Glebe, Bondi, Paddington and the Rocks. They then started doing pop ups in every major shopping centre in Sydney. That led to them settling in a permanent location in Sydney Westfield.
There were many ups and downs along the way, and many times when we wanted to pack things up and get a job with a regular pay check, but It’s a law of nature to grow, people, plants and even brands. Sometimes they grow slowly and you don’t even notice, and sometimes it seems like overnight there was a major transformation. That’s what happened with us.
Originally we created COCO LIBERACE from our passion for designer jewellery. The name was inspired by two icons who brought accessories into the fashion scene, and together they represented our style and vision.
Coco Chanel for her timeless style and Liberace for his flamboyance, We channeled them together through COCO LIBERACE.
Over the years we established ourselves as a designer accessory label, known for our big statement and quality jewellery.
But slowly our style and passions were changing, and you could see it through our designs. Our passion for designer jewellery was still strong but we were moving towards a more fine and luxury jewellery line.
ELVIE represented a new beginning, a freedom to grow and to change and be who we truly believe we are.
With love from
Nicolle and John.