We had the good fortune of connecting with Megan Coy and we’ve shared our conversation below.
Hi Megan, what do you attribute your success to?
I would say the most important factor is staying true to myself and my vision. It’s very easy to be influenced by what you see working for other people/brands, but as a small business I am just as much a part of the brand as my products are. I’ve learned the hard way in previous jobs that trying to fit in a mold or do what works for others will eventually lead to burnout or resentment and I really wanted to avoid that when I started Coy Creative. I enjoy what I do everyday because I chose to do it and it comes from a place of authenticity. I take into consideration what people are buying, statistics, and trends, but I decide what I want to do from there and it might not always be the obvious answer. I believe that authenticity is key to having a successful brand long term.
Alright, so let’s move onto what keeps you busy professionally?
I create polymer clay and resin jewelry. My professional background is in theatre – I trained as a lighting designer and stage manager at the University of Arizona. I worked in marketing and production at a non-profit children’s theatre in San Antonio, TX for 5 years before moving back to my hometown – Tucson, AZ. While I lived there I married my husband and had my daughter. I grew up a lot and learned about what makes a person professional and how I wanted to be perceived in the community. I often didn’t agree with colleagues about the “right” way to do things and this is when the idea to start my own things sparked, but I didn’t know what I wanted it to be yet.
After moving back to Tucson, I stage managed for a year before the pandemic started, but I was burning out quickly and my family was struggling with the transition from San Antonio so I had tabled the idea of starting my own business. In March 2020, we had been in Tucson less than a year and the world sort of forced me to take a break. For the first time since I could remember I had no obligations and not a lot to do, so I rediscovered art and hobbies I hadn’t thought about since before my daughter was born.
Shortly after, I started Coy Creative. I had always loved creating and sort of lost it along the way under the pressure to make the next move and keep earning money. My friend posted about some earrings she made and I instantly wanted to know how she did it. I went out and got the supplies to do it and was hooked. I love statement earrings for many reasons: they can boost your confidence, they show off your personality, they can have special meaning. It was definitely not easy to get here, and overcoming challenges requires a lot of introspection and honesty with yourself. I have a history of trauma and I live with depression and anxiety, so a lot of the techniques I’ve learned in therapy are very helpful when I’m feeling challenged by my work. I hope what sets me apart is that everything that I produce is genuinely “me”. I spend a lot of time reflecting on who I am and how I want to be seen by the world around me and I hope it shows in my work and the brand as a whole. I want people to feel comfortable being genuinely themselves and I hope my jewelry can help them do that.
If you had a friend visiting you, what are some of the local spots you’d want to take them around to?
I love Tucson! After graduating college, I had to get away for a bit to appreciate what I had and my husband I moved back because I couldn’t stay away! Our itinerary would include hiking in Sabino Canyon and other places around the city and definitely trips to the Botanical Gardens, the MSA annex, Fourth Avenue and all the shops along it. Some of our favorite food spots are Divine Bovine Burgers, Boca Tacos, Cafe Passé, Coffee Times, Scented Leaf Tea, Crooked Tooth Brewery, and Le Buzz. I would try to fit in stops at Bookman’s, The Ninth House and some of the local artisan markets that pop up around town. There are so many interesting people in Tucson and I think a lot of the local shops are the best places to find them!
Who else deserves some credit and recognition?
It takes so many people to create and grow small business! My friend Ari gets a shoutout for introducing me to my craft, and Lauren of Sigfus (another Tucson brand) who mentored me through the early months of making earrings and starting a business. My mom, husband, and daughter get a lot of credit for helping me with all aspects of the business and supporting me through anything I set out to do. Of course, all of my customers, whether they are regulars or share their purchases with their friends. I couldn’t keep doing what I’m doing if people weren’t responding positively to it!
Facebook: Coy Creative AZ