INSIDE LOOK: Jelly Press
Owner & Illustrator Chelsea Preston
By: Tiffany Evers // Photos by: Kelsey Walters
Q: ECC has been a big fan of Jelly Press since you opened this past May. What were you doing before that led you to this venture?
A: Oh my gosh, so much. I graduated from Flagler College, focusing on fine art and graphic design and then the University of Kentucky for my masters in fashion. Professionally, I’ve worked in buying and most recently teaching fashion in Orlando.
Q: I love your company name and I’m sure there is a story behind it. How did you come up with it?
A: While I was brainstorming with my husband on names, I looked to my dog, Luke, a.k.a. Jelly Bean (I am convinced he has no spine) and asked, “What do you think, Jelly Bean?” It just clicked, one of those “made for TV” moments.
Q: Taking the leap into entrepreneurship can be scary. What was it that made you decide to take a chance on yourself and start your own businesses?
A: My job was coming to an end at the college and with my family now living in New Smyrna Beach, I knew I would need to start my own business in this city made up of local businesses. I started working on any freelance jobs I could get my hands on both locally and nationally. Getting to work with Magnolia Market out of Waco, Texas was the project that really helped boost my confidence to start Jelly Press. I realized if I were willing to work so hard for other people I would work twice as hard for myself. I am so fortunate to have a supportive husband who not only supports what I am doing, but travels with me to help with Jelly Press events.
A: Every job and experience has been critical to any of my success with Jelly Press. My time as department lead with the college gave me the work ethic I have today, teaching me to juggle a million things at once and keeping me current with the fashion and retail industry. In any consumer oriented field, it is all about understanding the trends and influencers for consumers – be it technological advancements or political events, just to name a few – everything we are exposed to influences what we like and our buying decisions.
Q: You have a style that is pretty easy to recognize, from the simplistic designs to the coastal feel. What are the factors that influence your work, what’s your inspiration?
A: With Jelly Press I wanted to develop a style that is quirky and fun but also simple and contemporary. I want people to connect with the images I paint, bringing back memories of a favorite destination or even baking cookies with family during the holidays.
Q: Jelly Press is more than just cards and prints. What other products and services do you have/offer?
A: I also offer custom design work which I really enjoy as it offers me a fun challenge. Jelly Press offers additional services like invitation and stationery design including weddings, logo design and commission paintings if you want something extra special.
Q: Where can locals browse your products?
A: You can shop Jelly Press products always on my website (JellyPressNSB.com), in New Smyrna Beach at The Posh Pineapple and Beachside Candy, and in St. Augustine at Flagler’s Legacy and Two Sparrows. I will be participating in a couple of events for the holiday season as well, just subscribe to my newsletter through my website and I’ll let you know when and where I’ll be next!
Q: How long does it usually take for you to finish a new illustration from start to finish?
A: When an idea comes, I just have to see it finished. Sometimes I get lucky and get it right on the first try and other times I may have to work through a couple of sketches and drafts. It really just depends (mostly on how much sleep and coffee I have had).
Q: What tools do you use to create your work?
A: I start a painting with watercolors and ink pens for most of the Jelly Press products then digitize the images using Adobe Photoshop and Illustrator for the final product. Everything is printed here locally at Sign of the Times and then cut, folded and packaged by hand by yours truly.
Q: What’s in the future for Jelly Press?
A: The ultimate goal is to grow Jelly Press into a national brand. I’ll be attending the National Stationery Show in NYC this spring for some inspiration and check out what is next for the paper goods industry.