Today we’d like to introduce you to Charlette Rawls and Richie Ferris.
Charlette and Richie, can you briefly walk us through your story – how you started and how you got to where you are today.
Richie’s dad somewhere in the 2000s took some classes, learning the craft, and then later passed it on to Richie. Richie didn’t do anything with it for many years, and then in 2017, tried it again to make me a stained-glass piece for my birthday! From there, big life changes happened: we had a baby, moved, made career changes, and found not too much time to invest in it until official quarantine orders hit in March of 2020. Suddenly, faced with a lot of time, Richie finally picked it up again, and he taught me so we could dive into it together. We immediately took love to it and tried our hands at a couple of jewelry pieces. From there, people really gained interest, and we started the business! It picked up momentum so quickly. We went from no work and feeling a bit lost, to suddenly thriving artists supported by our friends and family!
We’re always bombarded by how great it is to pursue your passion, etc – but we’ve spoken with enough people to know that it’s not always easy. Overall, would you say things have been easy for you?
There were a lot of learning curves to starting a new business! Especially one that was created during a time where we had to interact with clients completely digitally. All sketches, quotes, designs, progress photos, etc. were shared via email, and we immediately had to learn how to manage that. It’s easy to be lured into responding on Instagram, but in order to best stay organized, we knew we wanted a central place for all clients to go. But as stained glass is not a quick process, we’re unable to give quick responses on custom orders. It’s the way of the art form, and in the end, we’re grateful for the people who’ve allowed us to walk them through step by step in ensure everyone is on the same page! And it has also created some wonderful bonds with our community, learning people’s stories, the reason behind wanting to have a piece created, and if it’s a gift, how they want to make the recipient feel! It’s really special!
Another struggle was gathering supplies, and since our go-to spot has some limited pickup windows, we had to plan much more than usual. It’s not as simple as just running to the store, we were looking at all commissioned and potential pieces, and trying to make our trips out of the house worth it to still properly observe the stay at home orders, but also get our client’s commissions done in a timely manner.
So, as you know, we’re impressed with Ferris Glass – tell our readers more, for example what you’re most proud of as a company and what sets you apart from others.
We are a custom stained-glass art company! We specialize in custom hangings, art pieces, boxes and unique jewelry! Every piece is completely unique and a work of art. We create our templates from scratch, and nothing is pre-cut, so each piece is made individually for the customer. We may work on getting some pre-made pieces in the shop, but right now, it’s all made to order!
What sets us apart from other companies is how flexible we are in the customization of our products. We’re still learning, but stained glass is really a more infinite art form than others may think, and it can be so much more than just flowers in a window. We can take an idea and create it from scratch, working with our customers to figure out exactly what they need.
We are most proud of our creativity and fearlessness in experimenting with the unknown. With jewelry specifically, there was so much research behind getting supplies that would be safe for the skin, also experimenting with size and weight. It has been extremely fulfilling, and we’re grateful to be able to have an artistic outlet that is benefiting our community and family!
So, what’s next? Any big plans?
We plan to continue to grow and expand our business as much as possible. We want to continue to grow our community of clients, but also really challenge ourselves to really take on new and exciting projects within this medium. While it’s easy to stay in the comfort of the known, we find the most excitement and fulfillment in taking on new ideas that haven’t been done before.
The biggest event we have coming up is our wedding! We’ve been planning it for over a year now, and are still unsure if it will be happening this year as we have planned. Just like in our business, we’re trying to be flexible with the ever-changing plans. But we are so excited to walk down the aisle and finally say ‘I do’ in the very spot that we first met! From there, we want to continue to grow our lives, raise our daughter, plant some more plants, and maybe someday move into a bigger apartment with our own workshop! We have learned so much in this process, and will use that to launch into the next phases of our lives!
- Custom Hanging – 5 Pieces or Less – 3″ $20 Min.
- Custom Hanging – 5 Pieces or Less – 5″ $30 Min.
- Custom Hanging – 5 Pieces or Less – 7″ $40 Min.
- Custom Hanging – 5 Pieces or Less – 10″ $50 Min.
- Custom Hangings – $2/Per Additional Piece
- Earrings – 3 Pieces or Less – Silver $30 Min.
- Necklaces – 3 Pieces or Less – Silver $45 Min.
- Jewelry – $2/Per Additional Piece
- All pieces require a 50% deposit due at time of booking. Remaining balance and shipping costs due at completion.
- Email: firstname.lastname@example.org
- Instagram: @ferrisglass
Couple Photo Credit – Photography by Dallaslyn