By Sarah Clemmons
It all began in a garage. It’s an origin story setting you’ve heard from Jobs, Wozniak, and Bezos. But this piece isn’t about bits and bytes but beads and bracelets, and the b-word that brings it all full circle: business.
Lissy Rawl, creative powerhouse behind Hilton Head Island’s own Little Fish Boateak, started handmaking jewelry in her garage in mid-2014, using her keen eye for design and textiles shaped by her years as an interior designer.
Her Big Break
But what does the owner of this locally owned and operated jewelry brand see as her ‘big break?’
Constantly inspired by our hyper-local business environment in the Lowcountry, Rawl crafted local business and mentoring partnerships available to her in the nonprofit sector through her trusted SC Lowcountry SCORE mentors, in the retail sector by offering her pieces in local boutiques, and by sharing her inspiring start-up story in local publications. The result? A brand that can now be found throughout the Southeast and through a successful e-commerce platform at littlefishboateak.com, furthering Little Fish Boateak’s growth in a time when retail businesses must turn to online platforms to remain relevant. By giving herself the space to lean into her natural creativity through strategic partnerships on the business end, Rawl is able to keep visualizing and actualizing both small and large goals for Little Fish Boateak.
Although local partnerships helped solidify Little Fish Boateak into the recognizable regional brand it is today, Rawl’s big moment came through her inclusion in the Southern Living Gift Guide. If you’ve ever worn a piece of her jewelry, you know exactly why it’s a great gift to give AND receive. Being included in media circulated throughout the Southeast gave Little Fish Boateak the brand boost needed to reach the next business level.
What’s Next for Little Fish Boateak?
Rawl’s long-term goals include expanding her custom-designed and -crafted offerings to textiles like wall coverings, wrapping paper, and more home accessories in a return to her interior design roots.
Ultimately, Rawl is an inspiring entrepreneur and role model for her “Little Fish,” daughters Woodley and Willa. With her strong, local support system of husband, Bill, family, friends, LFB artisans, mentors and business partners, Rawl took a business from a garage on Hilton Head Island to jewelry boxes throughout the United States in just over six years.
“Being included in media circulated throughout the Southeast gave Little Fish Boateak the brand boost needed to reach the next business level.”