Litter is a handcrafted jewelry business conceived by the sister duo of Rachael Mann and Mackenzie Burdick. It all started for the sisters when Mann decided to fashion a headpiece out of a necklace she owned to stand out at a party. Her jewelry did what it intended to do and caught the eyes of all the party-goers. The sisters then decided to make 50 copies of that piece and sell them at a local trunk show. All of their pieces were sold out. They then decided to launch their jewelry line called Litter.
The sisters fashion jewelry out of everyday items, things found at yard sales, and sometimes even trash, hence the name Litter. They focus primarily on unique pieces rather than conventional bracelets or earrings. They sell leg chains, shoe jewelry, and mustaches made of chains. Their pieces are unique, creative, and guaranteed to turn a few heads when worn in public places.
The brand has gotten public exposure through celebrities as well. As seen in the brand’s social media posts, several high-profile celebrities such as Bella Hadid and Vanessa Hudgens were seen wearing pieces from Litter. Their products can also be found at independent jewelry stores, and they provide styling for photo shoots and music videos as well.
Litter is still functional. However, their website states that they are not taking any orders because they’re moving. Their social media pages are not up to date, and little can be known about the status of the business looking at them.
Litter is a business with immense potential as it provides a fresh take on conventional jewelry. The lack of information suggests that it could not achieve the growth promised in the Shark Tank pitch.
How Did the Shark Tank Pitch Go?
Rachael Mann and Mackenzie Burdick entered their Shark Tank pitch with models who wore many of their pieces. The Sharks were instantly impressed by the designs on display and were inquisitive about the business.
The sisters explained that they need the money not just to invest in their business but also to hire a team that will help take their business to the next level. Currently their business consisted of the two sisters only who hand crafted every piece. It was obvious that the sisters were confined more to the creative aspect and needed help with strategizing the growth of their business.
The sisters asked for $80,000 in return for 51% equity in their business.
The Sharks were interested in the products and had ideas about increasing growth. Kevin O’Leary inquired about sales, and it was revealed that the business had projected sales of $150,000. O’Leary was not convinced by the model, saying that instead of the pieces being handcrafted, he could manufacture hundreds in a Chinese factory. He believed that the sales should be much higher than what they currently were.
The sisters replied that this was the guidance they needed to grow their business. Both O’Leary and Robert Herjavec were skeptical about the time-consuming nature of the company, so they pulled out of negotiations.
After a lot of back and forth, Daymond John offered the sisters a “designers deal”. This deal consisted of $80,000 for 70% of the business and salaries for both the sisters. He quoted a range of salaries but did not give a concrete number. He also warned the sisters that he would pull out if they entertained offers from the other Sharks.
Mark Cuban also jumped in on the offer, claiming that he would take care of the “website stuff”. John then employed Cuban’s 24-second clock and put the sisters on the spot to accept his offer. He did not let Barbara Corcoran get a word in the meanwhile.
In the middle of all this, the sisters said yes to Cuban and John’s offer without entertaining Corcoran. They revealed that they had initially wanted to work with both Cuban and John.
It is, however, unclear whether the deal held afterward. There are no details available, and one might imagine that the deal turned sour, and both the parties could not find common ground.
Our Review of Litter
Litter offers a unique spin on conventional jewelry and showcases out-of-the-box thinking in its designs. The designs are fresh and the appeal can be understood by looking at them. The brand could have cemented itself as one of the big players in the jewelry industry, but it seems as if it could not live up to its potential.
The jewelry pieces themselves have a lot of positives but also some very glaring negatives as well.
Pros of Litter Jewelry
- Provides headpieces and leg chains and other novelty jewelry not commonly available
- Made of recycled material so could be classified as sustainable
- Custom made:the sisters are willing to listen to your vision and design the jewelry
- Can be used in costumes
- Global shipping
Cons of Litter Jewelry
- Expensive for jewelry not made out of any precious metals. It is revealed that the jewelry pieces require a minimal amount of money to make. Therefore, the profit margins can be difficult to explain to customers looking for value
- The chains used for the making of the jewelry are not high quality, so can break easily.
- Unreliable service
The biggest concern about the jewelry remains the price point. Some might believe paying $100 for a jewelry piece that costs $2 to make is not worth it. Some might feel it is a fair price to pay for the artistic vision.
Who Is It For?
Litter is for anyone who enjoys wearing jewelry. The unique designs, however, attract creatives more as they look to style new looks and create trends. The jewelry line consists more of statement pieces than those used for everyday wear. It is therefore in demand with celebrities who adorn bold styles for photo shoots or everyday looks because they are sure to have many eyes on them.
Are There Any Alternatives?
Many brands provide statement jewelry pieces that are Litter’s trademark.
Some brands have focused mainly on recycling and sustainability, a vision that Litter could have made its selling point. One such brand is Bead the Change which focuses entirely on recycled material and environmental awareness. People looking for sustainable and recycled jewelry can use that as an option.
Litter is tricky to judge because it is unclear how it flourished after its Shark Tank appearance. The business is functional but is not taking any orders as of now. The products were appealing, and there could have been a dedicated market for them. However, it seems that the sisters could not conceive of a clear-cut artistic or growth vision.
They could have either focused on recycling and tapped into the mindful consumer market or indulged in mass manufacturing to make money. It is yet to be seen whether Litter achieves what it set out to do.