Posted on June 10 2021
Our fourth instalment of Small Business Feature is here! We're loving introducing you all to some Small Business Owners, so to continue celebrating creativity let us introduce you to Norah Collier!
⭐️ We love your work, but would love to know more about you. Tell us all there is to know about Norah Collier and Noralings!
Hi, I’m Norah and I run the small, anime inspired art business known as Noralings! The name itself actually comes from my other hobby, cosplaying! I ran a YouTube channel for my cosplay and given my name is Norah, my viewers and I coined the term Noralings for my followers and it’s stuck ever since. I wanted my art business to be connected in some way to my passion for cosplaying so taking the name I used to use seemed perfect at the time! Noralings sells original and anime inspired artworks such as art prints, keychains, stickers and handmade jewellery which is made using Zap products. It’s ran in its entirety by me, as I do all of the artwork, design, sales, promotion and shipping of all products sold in the store! The store is ran from a slightly unconventional place, my kitchen table as I sadly do not have the luxury of an office space, but I love working there for all the hustle and bustle it brings around the house when people pop in to see what I’m working on at the time.
⭐️ What is a product you haven’t made yet but would love to sometime in the future?
I am yet to have made anything using the wooden charms and I really want to delve into that sometime soon. I have plans to make some bath token earrings inspired by the bath tokens of Spirited Away to add to the jewellery I already offer in the store!
⭐️ If you could have a lifetime supply of any Zap! Product, which would it be and why?
It has to be acrylic charms! The main bulk of my most popular products are all made from acrylic charms and my upcoming series of products will also be made from acrylic charms so they’d be the perfect product to have a lifetime supply of! My most recent product was made using the frosted purple acrylic charms and that was inspired by Shinobu from Demon Slayer’s hair butterfly! Stickers would be a close second though, as every order from my store always includes a free sticker so they’d be great to have an unlimited supply of.
⭐️ What is the biggest curveball you have had to overcome since starting your business?
The worldwide pandemic has definitely been a curveball for me in terms of sales and an obstacle that I’ve had to overcome. Given that I started my business in the middle of the pandemic itself, it has been more difficult to generate income than it would’ve have been if comic conventions had been on as they are one of the main forms of income for many artists I know. Selling exclusively online has been a curveball given that its harder to drum up the business when you have a small following like I do, and promotion of products was quite difficult in the beginning, but I managed to overcome it with lots of hard work and perseverance!
⭐️ What is your current favourite Netflix/tv show and what’s your go-to snack for watching?
My current favourite show is the anime Black Clover! I hadn’t heard many good things about the show going into so I had limited hopes in terms of it but it turned out to be such an amazing show and now I’m hooked on it! My go to snack for watching any kind of show is Maltesers as they’re my favourite chocolate, the best thing to sit down with and eat when watching your fave show.
⭐️ What things are most important to you when running your business?
Customer satisfaction is the most important thing to me in regards to my business. My customers are the reason I’m able to keep going with my business and so without them, I wouldn’t be able to do and create all the things I do now. Making customers happy from ordering to receiving my work gives me great satisfaction and so I consider it to be the most important thing I do. Including freebies in every order, ensuring fast shipping and communicating with each and every customer personally all contributes to customer satisfaction!
⭐️ How did you first start selling your work?
I first began drawing digitally during the very first lockdown in the UK as a way to pass the time. I bought an old, cheap graphics tablet from CEX and began teaching myself how to draw. As I began to improve, I began to share my art online and I had many people encourage me to open a store so they could purchase some of it. After that, I spent weeks researching and learning how to set up a store and originally went with a SquareSpace domain to sell the limited amount of products I had at the time, which were my Avatar the Last Airbender inspired acrylic charm jewellery, created from Zap products!
After a few months or so, I opened my secondary storefront on Etsy where I’ve been selling ever since. Etsy opened up so many doors for me and my business so I consider that to be how I started selling! I managed to expand my products ranges to what I have today and I’m always building my products up when I get the chance to!
⭐️ What would you like to achieve this year?
I have a multitude of things I’d love to achieve this year! If COVID bates off enough to allow conventions to go ahead once more, I’d love to be able to have my very first art stall at one so I can show off all my hard work in person. I’d also love to finally reach over a 100 followed on Instagram and break 100 sales on Etsy by the end of the year! When these happen I’m planning on hosting lots of giveaways as a thank you to all my lovely customers who’ve allowed me to grow and become the person and business that I am today!
⭐️ What’s your favourite piece of work/collection you have created?
My fave collection is one I’ve been working on for a long time, inspired by my love of Victorian flower language and the show Seven Deadly Sins. The collection features the Seven Sins as well as three of the other main characters, surrounded by flowers with meanings that correspond to their individual personalities and characters. My plan for the collection is to have them made into either acrylic or enamel pins, although I have already turned the first one I did into a 3 inch acrylic charm!
⭐️ Where can we purchase your work?
All of my work can be purchased from my Etsy, aptly named Noralings!
You can purchase from Norah on Etsy or follow any of the links below.