A Mompreneur Inspired by Customized Keepsake Jewelry, Origami Owl
by Mary Lansing
When you first meet Patty Quon-Sandberg, you may wonder how this full-time Art Director and Mom of two manages it all. Then, you find out she is also a proud representative for Origami Owl Jewelry! “My Origami Owl business is my part-time fun job,” explains Patty, who resides in Los Angeles with her husband and two teenaged children. “I had wanted to supplement my income and was always on the lookout for something fun to do part-time,” she says. Enter, Origami Owl Jewelry.
Origami Owl has become a leading Direct Sales company for those with a passion to create jewelry and make a difference. Founded by a then 14 year old Bella Weems, Bella simply began making lockets at her kitchen table and then graduated to a mall kiosk. Now, Bella is managing this thriving company for the entrepreneurs and their kids. Origami Owl invites parents with children ages 12 and up to become representatives as a team, all while teaching the fundamentals of being a business owner, managing an income, and fundraising.
Patty started Origami Owl in 2013, thanks to an Instagram post by a lady named Margaret. Margaret was wearing an Origami Owl creation in her post that symbolized her family and daughter. Her daughter, whose nickname is Bear (paw print), has cystic fibrosis (aka “65 Roses”). The July birthstone is to celebrate her life and the family heart represented the support of her family.
“I was intrigued and I did a bunch of research on Origami Owl,” explains Patty, “and found it to be so fascinating! I found out that it was a new company as of that year and was created by a 14 year old girl. After 3 months of looking into this company, I decided to sign-up and found out that I was 24,000th in line to become an Independent Designer with Origami Owl.” Wait, did she say 24,000th?! She quickly became “Designer in Waiting”, making Patty vie to become a representative even more so. “Since it was a brand new company—they were trying to pace themselves to meet the demands of fulfilling the orders of customers.”
Enter a road trip to Phoenix. In July 2013, Origami Owl was going to have their first National Convention in Phoenix. They made an announcement to all “Designers in Waiting” that if any on the waiting list went to the National Convention, they would automatically become an Independent Designer with Origami Owl. “That is how and when I joined the company!” Patty says beaming, “The experience I had at the convention was exciting and the people I met were so much fun and inspirational, it made me love and be proud that I had joined such a fun and amazing company.”
Joining with her 12 year old daughter, Tiana (now 15), it is very clear that while the Mother-Daughter Entrepreneurs are passionate about their business, that they are also more connected than ever, “It has been a wonderful experience and we have grown very close together over the years.”
Another reason Patty believes in Origami Owl? Their devotion to giving back.
In 2016, Origami Owl donated over $1,0100,000 to various causes. Their program, Live Sparkly, enables designers to use Origami Owl to make a difference in the lives of others and also manage an incredible website where Designers post stories and situations that they were able to help with the sales of the jewelry.
Origami Owl has also paired up with Childhelp, which donates proceeds of certain charms for neglected and abused children. Currently, they are donating $1 of every locket sold to Operation Underground Railroad, which that helps rescue children from human slavery and sex trafficking.
When asked if she has any advice for fellow Mompreneurs who do the 9-5 grind AND their own business? “I fully believe in networking! Every person you meet can be a potential customer or person who can help your business in some way. Attending groups, venues, school activities, volunteering at your church, school and other community events are not only a great way to network. You are also helping and being productive and getting to know new people and their friends and family.”
Patty also knows the power of social media. “It is probably the best marketing tool everyone has access to. Not only can you reach many people at once to tell them about your business and what you have to offer, (but) it’s free!”
Currently as NAILPRO Magazine’s Art Director, Patty does not rule out going full time with Origami Owl; “Working full time does limit me with the amount of time I can devote to Origami Owl” she admits, “However, I hope to grow the team of designers under me. Origami Owl offers and supports their designers so much. If I ever have the time where I leave my full time job, I know I can devote more time to my Origami Owl business and that’s a comforting feeling!”
Learn more about Patty and her Origami Owl business:
ABOUT THE AUTHOR:
Mary Lansing is the Editor of the popular LA lifestyle and travel blog, Along Comes Mary (www.alongcomesmaryblog.com). When she is not keeping busy with her Social Media Management business, you can find her out exploring all Southern California has to offer, or off on a trip!
She lives in Los Angeles with her Husband, Mike, and their 2 dogs.