While WSW has a big presence, our company is run by a small (but mighty!) team. Founded back in 2014, WomanShopsWorld has become a powerful force in the creative industry. We are led by our founders and wife-and-husband team - Carter and Aveesh - who both bring a wealth of knowledge and expertise to our product line.
Carter has an eye for color and design, and a background in jewelry making with glass beads. Aveesh has a background in gemstone manufacturing and global sourcing, and family roots in India. All of these strengths combine to bring our mission of a more colorful, creative world to life.
How We Got Started
When Carter’s phone rang one fateful day, she had no idea it was her future on the line. A glass bead maker living in Charleston, SC, Carter had dreamed of being a part of a larger creative force.
Aveesh was on the other side of the call, and was on the hunt for a designer to collaborate with. Someone, he hoped, who could take the company’s bead designs to the next level. At the time, Aveesh owned a wholesale bead company in Berkeley, CA, and was looking to expand his selection of glass beads.
The world shifted on its axis a little when these two met in Berkeley in 2004.
A few serendipitous years later, Carter and Aveesh had married and were busy building their bead empire, supplying beads to most of the bead stores in the country. By 2008, the bead industry was suffering, and the couple’s wholesale business was feeling the effect.
In 2010, they moved to Charlotte, NC, to be closer to Carter’s family, and to reduce overhead. It was during this time that Carter started exploring different ideas for the company, and, on a whim, decided to open an Etsy shop, naming it WomanShopsWorld.
Using her own personal style as a benchmark for choosing which products to add to the shop, over the course of the next 2 years, Carter transitioned the company from a wholesale bead business selling every type of bead you can imagine to a highly curated retail craft supply shop with a focus on globally-sourced handmade items. The rebrand was fueled by instinct and passion for the products, and the outcome was a powerhouse craft supply shop, the likes of which had never existed before.
WSW quickly drew the attention of Etsy, who frequently features the tassels, beads and trimmings in their newsletters and on their site. They even chose WSW as a Featured Shop in 2014 (read that article here).
In 2016, WSW launched its own standalone website, and expanded its offerings to include home decor, gift sets, and fashion, and the product selection continues to grow. In 2019, the company relocated to Columbia, SC, where Carter grew up.
Meet Our Team
Carter has been named the Queen of Tassels by more than one happy customer! The creative visionary for WSW, Carter has been dabbling in beads, textiles, and adornments her whole life. Some of her favorite childhood possessions were strands of her great-grandmother’s vintage beaded jewelry, and colorful beaded necklaces that her Dad brought her from Kenya. It is Carter’s love of accessories and her “more is more” style that is the driving force behind WSW.
Carter pursued a career as a glass bead artist and jewelry designer straight out of college, and that’s when she was introduced to the world of bead sourcing and supply-stashing. While she didn’t know exactly where her professional path would lead, she had a desire to be a part of a creative force larger than just herself. In hindsight, she’s really grateful for her years as a full-time jewelry designer, as she uses that insight and knowledge daily when developing components for WSW customers.
When Carter traveled with Aveesh to India for the first time on a semi-precious buying trip, she felt so at home that it was almost as if she experienced a past-life connection to the colorful, chaotic land. Though they were in India to buy gemstones, Carter came home with boxes of tassels, trinkets, and textiles. She knew the only way she could keep buying these treasures was to share them with the world, and a few months later WSW was born.
Her fascination with adornment, sparkle, and color, paired with the mystique of faraway lands keep Carter’s creativity flowing and mind stimulated. It is these same concepts that inspire WSW products and keep customers always coming back to see what’s new.
Aveesh grew up in India, land of gemstones, color, and personal adornment. He came to the US to attend college, and was so inspired by the sense of opportunity that exists here, that he never moved back to India. He knew that he wanted to work for himself, and he has always done just that.
When Aveesh was attending college at Lewis & Clark in Portland, he started selling jewelry from India to students and professors on campus and their families. After a few years of this, he had a stash of broken pieces that he didn’t know what to do with, and a friend recommended that he take them to a local bead store. At the time, Aveesh had no idea that an entire industry existed around beads, but when he started exploring the market, he realized that this was a perfect fit for him. He opened a retail bead store in Portland, and after a few years success, he started selling wholesale. 30 years and millions of beads later, he jokes that he still dreams about beads.
Aveesh manages overseas logistics and the WSW bone bead production and also has extensive bead knowledge that comes in handy when Google can’t answer a question. He’s known for frequent bloopers that keep everyone laughing, and currently holds lots of Mr. Mom duties.
Sandra joined WSW following a less-than-stimulating sales job that just about bored her to tears. She says the change of pace has been a technicolor dream come true! Her job title at WSW is “Tassel Tamer,” and she is the one who makes sure your orders are shipped on time, in addition to juggling about 42 other odd tasks around Tassel HQ.
If you have a question about tassels, colors, or beads, Sandra is most likely the one who will get back to you.
When she’s not taming tassels, you can find Sandra doing yoga in her Zen Den, dancing at a music festival, or planning her next trip.
Her favorite part about working at WSW is being around like-minded people who inspire creativity and encourage finding true bliss.
In 2015, the next generation of WSW joined the team when Carter and Aveesh brough Jai into the world. Though he’s only 4, Jai already shares his parents’ love of color and passion for blazing your own trail. He’s earned the nickname “Choti Baba,” which translates to “tiny boss” in Hindi, as it’s clear to all that he’s got all things figured out at the studio. He loves to help rearrange the tassels and pom poms in the stock room, highlight packing slips, and paint tissue paper for our packages. Jai has already taken his maiden shopping trip to India, and loves adventure.
Gypsy is the resident WSW stress-reliever and faithful companion. He stays up for all of the middle-of-the-night phone calls overseas, and is always glad when his fellow humans get down on the floor to unpack a new shipment of beads or tassels. While he’s no guard dog, he takes his responsibilities seriously and shows up for work every day.
WSW is located in Columbia, SC. We operate out of a warehouse in an office park, with no sign on the door. Passersby have no idea all of the colorful magic that exists behind our front door!
So no, we don’t have a brick and mortar store, and unfortunately, you can’t come pick up your order in person.
“But why?!” is a question we get a lot. To which we always (kind-of jokingly, but kind-of seriously) answer, “because we’d never get rid of you!” While we do love to talk tassels and beads, and love even more to meet our customers in person, we are really busy pulling your orders, photographing product, planning our next tassel shipment, and doing the things that busy family-owned business people do. So time for warehouse visits simply isn’t in the schedule.