Born and raised in Oswego, Debbie Diment, successfully works full time at SUNY Oswego while also running her own wedding accessories store, Make This Day Special.
Diment who previously owned a wedding shop in Oswego, created the brand around 2005 after browsing through some crafts website. " I was looking for some Christmas gifts for my kids and I stumbled across a website with handmade wedding products and I said Oh I can make this stuff," Diment said. "I just decided to give it a whirl."
Selling her products on eBay, Diment started off very small but soon orders kicked off and she created her own website, MakeThisDaySpecial.com. Since its inception, MakeThisDaySpecial.com has shipped more than 5,000 orders.
"I got to a point really where it was too big for me to keep up with the amount of orders and working full time," said Diment, who recently downsized the brand and sells on Etsy.com. Diment currently specializes in personalized wedding garters, guest books and pens, ring pillows and flower girl baskets. Customers can order the designs in whichever colors, fabrics or rhinestones they desire.
Diment explained that her most popular design is the wedding garters and that her products have an unique advantage. "The difference in all of those is I handcraft them but I also engrave them," said Diment who taught herself how to create the products. "They're personalized with the couple's name and date which is a nice touch."
Diment said that in her products she is inspired by all the different kinds of rhinestones and gems that she finds and the colors of the season. "What inspires me is finding out what those colors are and making something come to live out of those colors," Diment said.
Finding the time to work on her projects becomes a bit easier with the help and support of her family. Although her son and daughter attend college, Diment's husband helps around the house and helps with the shipping of packages. Her biggest challenge is that from designing, creating, photographing and keeping with the website, she works alone. She believes that having a website provides her a lot of freedom and leeway if anything urgent comes up.
"My son went away to college this August, so I closed my shop down for one week and I knew there wasn't going to be any orders coming in," said Diment, explaining that sometimes she receives last minute orders that need immediate attention. "If something comes up important with my family I have the freedom to shut it down and not take orders during that time so I could focus on the family side of things."
In the near future, Diment wants to become and exclusive wedding garter store. "Wedding garters allow me to have a smaller amount of inventory, takes up less space and is very quick for me to produce them from start to finish," Diment said. "Slowly over the winter, I'm going to be pursuing just becoming a wedding garter store."
Diment explained that she has not marketed her product locally because the wedding season in the Oswego area is small and because she is not sure if she has the correct audience for the products. She said that her designs are popular worldwide with a lot of orders coming from Australia and New York City.
"An interesting thing about being a wedding business is that when you live in upstate New York wedding season is June, July and August, but selling products worldwide wedding season is year round, " Diment said. "There is no downtime."
Diment understands that with the internet come a lot of choices but she has built a strong customer base with the variety of options she gives buyers. She plans to keep Make This Day Special as a recreation activity.
"It is a hobby and business all in one. Where I always have to have some kind of creative outlet," Dement said. "If I were to ever close the business I would still be making something of the same sort. There's a creative side to it that I enjoy."
Diment currently providing an exclusive discount code for locals who want to purchase her product. By putting "Hometown20" on any order will give you a 30 percent discount through 12/31/13.
To access Make This Day Special log into MakeThisDaySpecial.com.