Why Military Moms Love The Locket Sisters + Coupon Code


Why do we love The Locket Sisters? Well, that’s a trick question because we love the company but also we LOVE the sisters, Amy and Allyssa. We could try to ramble on and on and explain why — for starters, the handcrafted gorgeous lockets they make — but we’d rather you get a chance to meet the sisters yourself with this interview.

Oh, but, wait, one thing we forgot to talk about during this interview (because these ladies are that humble and never even brought it up!): 25% of all profits from The Locket Sisters is donated to a different charity each month. Read about this month’s charity here. And keep reading to fall in love with lockets, the sisters who make them, AND to get a sweet coupon code to use for your next locket.

Julie from Military Moms Blog: I understand that you had a boutique photography studio before launching The Locket Sisters. Are you still taking photos and how did that business lead to The Locket Sisters?

Amy+Allyssa: Yes! Photography is at the root of all of our work. We launched Woodford Sisters Photography in August 2014, and it’s still a big part of our work. We’ve been able to add people to our team as we grow The Locket Sisters, which is more rewarding than we anticipated. Giving people a job is the best thing ever. Plus, we’ve got such amazing clients that we’d be silly to leave them. Our photo business led to our locket business because we offer the service of printing and framing for our clients, so in curating a collection of heirlooms, it seemed natural to add lockets … and Amy had been wanting one for herself for like a decade.

We’re still in the business of getting photos out of the digital abyss and into people’s hands, so really lockets were a seamless extension of our existing work.

J: For me, one of the things I love about a locket is how it reminds me of a bygone era — to a time when people didn’t have cell phones and 6 million photos of their kids (guilty as charged); to a time when having just one photo of your family was a luxury, so, of course, it made sense to hold it next to your heart. What does a locket mean to you?

A+A: A locket is a meditation on who you love, on what is most important to you. We have different ones in different styles with different people and places inside each one. If I’m really feeling strongly like my kids really need me, I wear one of them. When my husband is going through a tough time and needs support, I wear one of us on our first trip together 15 years ago.

It really feels like a prayer, a song, like one of those worry rocks you can rub and hold. It also means something different to each person who wears one. Some people just love the aesthetic, some people need it as they support a sick child, or to remember someone gone, or of a time in their life when they felt amazing. The stories alongside each photo are what creates the meaning of any locket.

J: On that note, I’m feeling photo anxiety about the picture I choose for my locket! I love that the photo used when crafting the locket is forever because it’s set in resin. I have a feeling I’m already going to need about 10 of these! Any tips on what picture to choose?

A+A: OMG! It’s gonna be gorgeous! A lot of people get anxiety, but in reality your gut instincts help you choose an image and click submit. You’re not likely to regret a photo you choose, but maybe you’ll want more? Lots of our customers have more than one.

We bring each photograph into photoshop, so we can maximize the quality and bring it waaaaaay down in size.

The best photo isn’t about what it will look like in the locket – we really mean that – and part of that is because many of our lockets are closed. No one will ever see it unless you open it for them. If you use logic to select your photo, you may end up with one that works well visually but doesn’t mean a lot to you. Don’t do that.

Choose the one that’s weird or irregular or too dark or too bright or a little fuzzy, but it makes your emotions spike, and you know the context of the photo means a lot to you.

We can fix darkness, we can sharpen blur, we can do a lot to aid your image, but mostly we don’t even need to because it gets shrunk down itty bitty. You’d probably be surprised at how clear little images still are, so just choose what means something to you.

That reminds me – a friend was showing me a bunch of photos he took of his kids at sunset jumping off a dock. They were gorgeous! But, his favorite one was just their splash, no kids above water. He loved knowing they’d just jumped in despite not seeing any faces. That would be the kind of image you’d want to choose. Doesn’t make sense, but means a lot.

{For just one week, The Locket Sisters have given all of you military moms a coupon code! Use momsblog10 to get 10% off any of their lockets. This offer expires on February 8.}

J: Did you have lockets before you started the business?

A+A: We didn’t have lockets until we started making them, mostly just because we didn’t like anything on the market at that time. But, Allyssa has been making jewelry since she was a kid, so often we’d wear designs that she made. About two years ago, Amy told Allyssa to figure out how to make lockets, so she did! That’s how we started wearing them. Really.

Well, actually, first we bought some from other places, but they fell apart easily. We thought, “Surely these can be made more durable?” and indeed we did it.

J: Which lockets do you wear and what is inside of them? This might be too personal of a question, I get it if you don’t want to answer!

A+A: Not too personal at all! We’d tell a stranger our life story while waiting in line at the bank. We’re open books – relating to people is how we stay sane. Anyway, back to your question: So, we both started with The Evelyn, because it was the first locket we offered, and we both also have a few test designs that we wear, too, that are not listed yet, because we’re testing their durability. Or we thought we’d launch them, and decided we didn’t want to.

Everything we sell has to be something we personally love.

We both also have a Lillian, and we each have a couple from the kids line, too. What we love about that line is that each metal has a matte finish. OBSESSED. LOVE. We make new ones for ourselves whenever we need to test something or whenever we fall in love with a new photo.

J: I feel like I would absolutely love working with my sister (but maybe hate it?!). What is it like working with your sister? What are each other’s strengths?

A+A: IT’S AMAZING! It’s unreal. I feel like I don’t even remember what it’s like to sit through pointless meetings and interact with co-workers who suck. Remember that? The worst.

A typical day for us looks like this: We get to the studio, usually Allyssa is early and Amy is running in late. Allyssa sets up shop with the right music and perfect lighting (we make it lovely because we can!), Amy rolls in – arms full of work to do – we drink coffee and talk about things you’d talk about with your sister, then at some point Allyssa tells Amy to shut-up and get back to work, so we work. There was a learning curve when we started working together four years ago, like we needed to learn how to take on and off our sister and co-worker caps, but we’re pretty different, so there isn’t tension or competition.

Amy is really good at details and has a lot of patience. She climbs ladders vertically as Allyssa always says – puts her eye on where she wants to go and then goes there. And if you’re not on board, at least get out of her way. She’s a really smart businesswoman, and has really creative ideas for how to scale a business.

Allyssa is more big picture, good at creating fluid systems and marketing for a brand. She is not patient though, neither of us are really, so when we want something to happen we try to get it done five minutes ago.

Perhaps the biggest blessing of us working together is having the flexibility of doing whatever you want whenever you want with the accountability of not wanting to let your sister down. That combo is powerful.

J: How old is Locket Sisters and what all have you learned along the way?

A+A: Our photo business is four years old, and our locket business has been around for eight months. You know what we’ve learned the most?

Just. Get. Started. Do something. Do anything. You cannot fix problems that don’t exist, and you can’t build the top of a skyscraper without first building the first 100 floors. It’s a climb, not a slingshot to the top. Some days I look around and think, “Oh my goodness, we’re really doing it. We’ve built this thing together.”

The further and further our work goes, the more we find people asking us for advice, and my only advice is to hurry up and do something. Everyone I know who wants to launch a creative career but hasn’t just hasn’t started. It’s not that they’re incapable, it’s that they’re afraid to fail so they never give themselves a chance to succeed, or they lean further into their excuses than their desire to pursue a goal.

Besides, what is failure anyway? It’s arbitrary. I heard once that if you’re not a little embarrassed of your product or blog or presentation at launch, you’ve waited too long to start. We are not perfectionists, but we are indeed very hard workers, and this is a gift. Onward. Just keep going.

J: I love the stories behind the names of your lockets. Seriously, the Penny Evelyn story gave me the chills and immediately made me buy one for my daughter! I feel like your lockets are so perfect for military moms and kids who, although are SO strong and resistant, are not impervious to loneliness and feelings of landlessness. Last year my kiddo started a new school in a new country in a new language. I would have loved to think she could have walked in that door with a beautiful locket of her family around her neck! Can you tell our readers a bit about the Penny Evelyn, and any other locket names you’d like to share?

A+A: Oh, your sweet girl! We are so excited to make that for her. She’s learning so much about bravery and new experiences. We love knowing she’ll be wearing one of our lockets.

The Penny is named after Allyssa’s daughter (Penny Evelyn) who was really struggling at a new preschool. The teachers kept saying she was having a hard time, and so one day at drop-off, Allyssa gave Penny her locket. It was The Big Love, one side had she and her brother, the other side had her Mom and Dad. She kept it open instead of closed (which is why our kids line is just open-faced lockets – they want to see them!) and rubbed it on her cheek. At conferences, the teachers told Allyssa that Penny even offered it to other kids who were having a hard time saying goodbye to their parents.

This story was actually the seed for us growing our locket line from a small part of Woodford Sisters Photography into The Locket Sisters.

Now we have lockets named after our grandmothers, our own Mom, our sister, all of our nieces and daughters. Our new men’s line will be named after our dad – The Dean. It’s funny because so many people comment on that, and we didn’t think it was too big of a deal to name them after people we love, but so many people love that part of it. And it makes sense – we’re a family-owned business telling stories with lockets named after people we love.

J: Excuse me as I admit to my fangirling you both because I have definitely read all through your blog (I highly recommend it readers!). So Amy used to be a supermodel?! How did that transition go from getting out of the business, and what is it like being behind the camera now?

A+A: Never say never, because while she was modeling, she said she’d never become a photographer because it looked like way too much work. She was living in a two-bedroom condo in New York City with her three little kids and husband, and after growing up in Minnesota, she was craving more nature and space for her own kids. So, the transition was kind of natural for the time in her kids’ lives that it happened, but jumping from in front of to behind the camera was quicker than she anticipated. She’ll tell you she loves being behind the camera because she loves the entire craft, the art, the creative independence of being in charge, but also it was one of the most distinct transitions of her life.

When her family uprooted to Minnesota, they really ripped out every last drop of a weed or seed or root along with it. The result years later; however, is that a whole new garden has been planted that includes three acres in the woods, 15 chickens, and a business she owns with her sister.

J: Anything coming down the line? A little birdy told me that there might be some products for men coming out soon?!

A+A: That’s a smart birdie! We’ve sold a couple of our men’s keychains already, but only when people inquiry privately as they’re not on the site yet. We’re also going to Hong Kong in September for a an international event that will help solidify a few more exciting pieces (and maybe offer some R&R on Lamma Island for these two mamas, too)…

{For just one week, The Locket Sisters have given all of you military moms a coupon code! Use momsblog10 to get 10% off any of their lockets. This offer expires on February 8, 2019.}

This is a sponsored post, but we are major fans of this company. Fangirls. Guilty as charged.
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Julie Cohen
Julie is a co-founder and contributor of Military Moms Blog. She also is a freelance writer and editor living in northern Italy where her husband is stationed in the Air Force. They have a little girl who spends most of her time (successfully) convincing her parents to buy more gelato, and a baby boy who they suspect already speaks better Italian than they do. Julie is the former food and wine editor of the San Antonio Express-News and former managing editor of Sauce Magazine in St. Louis, Missouri. which is where she calls home — but her dad was in the Army, so nowhere is technically home! She also has taught high school composition and British Literature, adult creative writing and college writing. Julie completed an MFA in nonfiction writing from Columbia University. In her free time, Julie enjoys running, reading and “studying” the varietals of Italy.