Pink Press Co. – Young Entrepreneur turns Lockdown Hobby into Successful Small Business
After a long year of uncertainty, business closures and public lockdowns, few people have arrived at the end of 2020 with the same outlook they began the year with.
While the lockdowns and layoffs have been unquestionably difficult for individuals of all ages, from all walks of life, the pandemic measures have cast a light on a certain level of adaptability and creativity for many. From launching online shops, providing contactless deliveries and offering online concerts and shows, individuals from all industries have found a way to remain connected during these socially distant times. Furthermore, using social platforms to connect with their community, countless people have used their time at home to pursue a side hustle or launch their own small business. Among the resounding calls to support local during these tough times, many of these endeavors have been met with extensive support from the community and beyond.
Hannah Olson is a 23-year old Licensed Practical Nurse from Strathmore, Alberta, who has spent the last 7 months alternating between working shifts at 3 different hospitals while launching Pink Press Co., her own modern handcrafted clay earring business.
Hannah became a certified LPN after completing the Licensed Practical Nursing Program at Bow Valley College in 2017, and has been rotating among the Alberta Children’s Hospital, Foothills Medical Centre, and Strathmore Hospital for the last 3 years. When the lockdown measures took effect earlier this year, she began using the downtime to pursue her passion for crafting, and discovered she had a knack for clay earrings.
“Initially it was just crafting for pure enjoyment, especially during the lockdown as there was not much else to do anyways,” she says. “When I came across my first pair of clay earrings on Instagram, my mom said to me “You could probably make those.””
Pink Press Co. then began in June as an Instagram business page, initially gathering a small community following. Describing her work as a reflection of her personal style, Hannah uses polymer clay and hypoallergenic earring pieces to handcraft unique, custom studs, pendants, dangle and tassel earrings for formal and casual wear. Products range between $12 and $26, plus shipping.
After receiving an extremely positive response and multiple expressions of interest, Hannah expanded her small business further by launching her own Etsy shop in October. According to Hannah, initial orders came from the surrounding community of Strathmore, eventually reaching Calgary and Airdrie as well. However, shortly after opening her Etsy shop, things really took off.
“I’ve lost track,” she says, “There have been nearly 300 orders on Etsy alone, in addition to custom orders on Instagram and physical shop sales.” She has now successfully shipped handcrafted earrings all across Alberta, as well as to BC, Saskatchewan, Manitoba and Ontario.
Hannah was scheduled to take part in a number of fall and winter markets this holiday season, which were ultimately cancelled as a result of the ongoing COVID-19 pandemic preventative measures. However, she has remained busy filling and shipping custom orders across Canada, and is looking forward to the opportunity to set up at future markets in the New Year.
To view Pink Press Co.’s collection of handcrafted, hypoallergenic clay earrings online, visit https://www.instagram.com/pink.press.co/or https://www.etsy.com/ca/shop/PinkPressCoByHannah, or take a look at Prairie Grounds Coffee House in Langdon, or Sole Discretion Boutique and Back to Good Market & Deli in Strathmore.
For more stories, visit Todayville Calgary.
Calgary police identify 15-year-old girl killed in shooting, investigation continues
Calgary (CP) – Calgary police have identified a 15-year-old girl who was fatally shot this week as investigators try to determine whether she was the intended target or if it was a case of mistaken identity.
Officers responded to reports of a shooting in an alley in the Martindale neighbourhood early Tuesday morning.
They say the teenager was a passenger in a vehicle when she was shot and that the driver, who was not injured, immediately fled the scene before pulling over to call police.
Police say investigators have received several tips from the public.
They say evidence from the scene leads police to believe it was targeted, but investigators haven’t determined whether the occupants of the vehicle were the intended targets.
The girl has been identified as Sarah Alexis Jorquera of Calgary.
“This was a senseless act of violence that took the life of a young girl,” Staff Sgt. Martin Schiavetta of the homicide unit said in a statement Wednesday.
“At this point, we have more questions than answers and are working around the clock to hold those responsible accountable. Losing a 15-year-old is a tragic loss for our community, her school, her friends and, most importantly, her family.”
Police ask anyone with any information about the shooting to call investigators.
This report by The Canadian Press was first published March 29, 2023.
‘A miracle’: Advocate says help being planned for victims of Calgary house explosion
Firefighters attend the scene of a house explosion that injured several people, destroyed one home and damaged others in Calgary on Monday, March 27, 2023. A leader in Calgary’s South Sudanese community says efforts will be made to provide financial help to 10 people seriously injured in a house explosion. THE CANADIAN PRESS/Jeff McIntosh
By Bill Graveland in Calgary
A leader in Calgary’s South Sudanese community says efforts are to be made to provide financial help to 10 people seriously injured in a house explosion.
The blast Monday destroyed one home, damaged several others and left part of the roof from the house that blew up in a yard across the street in the neighbourhood east of downtown.
Calgary Emergency Medical Services has said all the victims were adults, and that six of them had life-threatening injuries and four were seriously hurt.
Community advocate Gar Gar said it appears all of the victims were from South Sudan. Gar said he and some of the victims’ family members met at one of the hospitals where the injured were taken.
“I met a son who came to the hospital and went in and saw his dad and you could see the tears in his eyes. That sounds like it’s related to something that he saw and the shape is father is in,” Gar said Tuesday.
“There are family members, cousins, uncles and their nephews and nieces. Eventually, those will be the houses that some of them, when they get out of the hospital, might also be hoping to get back in.”
The fire department said the force of the explosion created “a large debris field” and several fires. A tangle of what appeared to be charred beams, pink insulation and splintered wood could be seen where the house once stood.
Homes on either side were charred and one had a shattered window. A tree in front had a piece of plywood and other debris stuck in it.
Gar said after hearing about the explosion and seeing its aftermath, he can’t believe there have been no deaths so far.
“To hear that they’re still fighting for their lives and some of them are stable — that by itself is a miracle and we give thanks for the responders who came in and took them so quick,” he said.
“Back home, we would probably have been talking about something different.”
Gar said if all 10 victims were living inside the home, he wants to know why.
“That’s certainly something we are asking when we get more details to see what kept 10 people in one house. Is that affordability issues or is that simply because we’re seeing the homelessness coming into the South Sudanese community?”
Gar said community members will be meeting with the families Tuesday to see about setting up a crowdfunding page.
“Basically they lost everything in one blink of an eye. They’re fighting not to lose their lives,” Gar said.
“We’re hoping to rally around those families and the community to come together and to support them where we can.”
The cause of the explosion is still under investigation.
This report by The Canadian Press was first published March 28, 2023.
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