Thursday, 29 January 2009

Flutter By Daisy.

In the world of handmade, one can find many wonderful items. So how about some beautiful garment pieces??? Dresses, skirts, tops and even the accessories to go with them?? Our next interview is that of a one of a kind fashion designer Natanya Bryant, who makes the most interesting, gorgeous pieces I have come across over on Etsy. Her dresses are feminine with a bit of an edge, and affordable. Even her photography is amazing, the way she showcases her clothes, like a dark, pretty dream! I am very happy to bring you our first ever fashion designer interview here at The Little Red Suitcase, she will fit perfectly with all the other handmade loveliness!!!

*Natanya Bryant*

1. Hello there, so you will be our first clothing designer to be interviewed here on The Little Red Suitcase. Tell us more about the girl behind all the lovely dresses!

She writes in her sleep, loves chiffon and ballerinas, wants to lock herself in a little hut on a hill one day with lots of pencils and write a book by hand like Rold Dahl did, wants to meet Rolf Harris, David Attenborough, loves to read Plath and Poe, goes to university sometimes, wants to live in a daydream where news papers and 'mean' doesn't exist, thinks that fairies are real, wants to have a giant bunny farm... with chickens too, loves cheese sandwiches and summertime, checked picnic blankets and her sewing machine who's name is Mo.

2. Flutter By Daisy is the name of your clothing line/shop. What is behind the name?
I was thinking of lots of names but this one stuck, and I'm happy it did because I like it now more than my own name : it's about butterflies and secret gardens...

3. Your pieces are amazing, so flowing ,feminine and of course very unique. How does a dress start for you? Do you carry a sketch book with you and jot down ideas? Are there patterns involved? Basically run us through the process of putting together one of your pieces.

I should carry a sketchbook! but I don't .. sometimes I end up scribbling on receipts from my pocket ... but most of the time I think I dream up dresses that I would love to wear myself, or could see butterfly people wearing so when I wake up it's already in my head. I don't tend to work from patterns I just go straight to dummy but sometimes I will take inspiration from vintage patterns.

4. When did you first fall in love with fashion design? Can you recall the first thing you might have sewn.

think I have loved fabric and dressing up since I can remember. My Nana used to sew and she taught me lots of things, she used to keep a big cardboard box with pretty scraps inside that she would let me have... I loved to wrap myself up inside and pretend to be a princess
, mermaid or fairy. After my draping stage I started to sew them together, and make sequin butterflies with her. When I started ballet lessons I discovered a love for stage costume (just the pretty ones) and later at school I started making dress up clothes for parties and Halloween for me and my friends. A teacher at school asked me to dance in one of her plays and to make my own costume and the leading ladies that was the first time my clothes were on stage and It kind of went from there...

5. Who would you say is a huge inspiration to you, especially when it comes to your craft?

It wouldn't have started without my Nan... but also, pretty things people and stuff in general like gardens, bunnies, Katie Jane Garside, sparkles, stones, Edgar, fairy tales, vogue, dreams, keys, a painting of mermaids I remember from childhood at Ferrens Art Gallery in Hull, drift wood, petals, Picnic at Hanging Rock, butterflies, 'Planet Earth', ballerinas, old piano sounds, clouds and birds. The designers I think I most adore are Betsey Johnson, Alexander McQueen and Jared Gold.

6. Well since you sew up all these wonderful garments, you must wear some. Can you recall a time when someone stopped you and asked you where you got that dress or skirt?? And what did it feel like to have someone be interested in your work?

It's lovely, but ... I'm most proud when I see my pretties on my flutterbydaisies and they look happy... *

7. Is their a certain design period that you are interested in, i.e the roaring 1920's or perhaps the 50Ty's, and why?

think the mainstream dresses of the 50's were pretty - the big poofy ones with lace a
nd frills in pastels. I also love the Victorian style, especially the petticoats and corsets ... but I think at the moment I'm most inspired by the 'Lolita movement' that started from a book, grew up in Japan and came back again... there's something lovely about feeling like a little girl again in lovely frilly dresses and patent Mary Jane shoes.

8. With running a shop and selling your own handmade
pieces, there are alot of pros and cons. What would you say have been the pros as well as the cons for you? Would you change anything?

Because I'm based in UK and my online shop is based in America and I have customers all over the world sometimes there's a bit of confusion with money conversion, especially because it changes everyday ...
but that's it ... I love what I do!

9. So, describe your workspace to us. What do you surround yourself with while your sewing or designing?

I have a sewing / writing room filled with pretty things that inspire me... lot's of clippings pinned to my walls and fabric piled high on top of boxes of ribbons and buttons... I keep all my old books and my own clothes in there too. The clipping on my wall are mostly of fairytales, illustrations, models dressed as broken dolls and fairies, I pin up my little receipt sketches and notes to myself too. I also have a little section saved for special pretties, like old bunny stamps, stones, dried flowers, vintage keys, my taxidermy butterfly, cat statue, and my ghost doll my friend made for me

10. Now for the finally question: Five things you just could not live without!

eek! eeeerrrrm .........
1. Needle and cotton
2. Pencil and paper
3. My best dress
4. coffee
5. Day-dreams I think I cheated a little with the 'ands' but you can't have one without the other :)

Love and Bunnies,

Saturday, 24 January 2009

Asking for Trouble.

If your looking for that gift for someone who is a Kawaii fan or all things Japanese, then this ones for you. She may live in Scotland, but she has an eye for Japanese design, which she incorporates into stationary, pins, tags, bags........ and well the list is limitless. Her work has been featured in Brick and Mortar shops as well as the National Museum of Scotland! With her own Etsy shop and several websites, her work is just within reach of becoming your very own.

1. Lets start off with who is Marceline? Wha
t makes her tick?

I'm 33 and live in Glasgow, Scotland. I'm originally from a small fishing village in the North East of Scotland but I've been in Glasgow for almost ten years and love it here. I currently work as a freelance web designer and make art, stationery and gifts as Asking For Trouble. I also run a music website , a blog of cute things called Super Cute Kawaii and spend a lot of time thinking about pie and bunnies (but not together).

2. So you are pretty much have your toes di
pped in alot of artistic things. Have you always been a creative person? What are some of your favorite mediums to work in?

My parents are both creative so me and my sister have been doing creative things since we were small. I ended up going to art school where I specialised in Printmaking so discovering the Print Gocco was amazing for me. I love to print by hand - it's a great mix of the creative and the technical. Basically, I love print in all its forms whether it's hand-printing on paper or textiles, photocopying zines or digitally printing my artwork on to cards and badges. I also love to sew but only in small doses.

3. Whats behind the name "Asking for trouble"? I see that is your Etsy store name as well as your website!

Asking For Trouble was the name of my little record label. I released a double 7" vinyl box set and putting the packaging together kind of reinvigorated my love of hand-making stuff. My plans for further releases all fell through but when I started making accessories and things I decided to keep the name, not least because I already had the domain and website. As for why, I am often asking for trouble - I'm very impulsive and often end up doing things that maybe aren't too sensible.

4. Your biggest inspiration seems to be Japanese patterns and
objects. What is it about this design style that really intrigues you and catches your eye?

I love the mix of the super cute and the traditional. The traditional kimono fabrics and chiyogami papers have amazingly intricate designs and then on the other hand you have the kawaii characters that are everywhere in Japan. I've been to Japan twice and everything is inspiring - even the manhole covers have lovely floral patterns and you can't walk two steps without seeing something so cute it will make you cry.

5. I have read that your art can be seen in some museums in Glasgow, Scotland. How does it feel to have your artwork recognized by others in such a big way?? What sort of pieces do you have on show there??

It's always extremely flattering to be asked to take part in an exhibition, especially when the curators come to you. The biggest thrill was being part of the Gifted exhibition at the National Museum of Scotland - the museum also owns some amazing historical pieces (like Dolly the first cloned sheep!) so it was very strange seeing my name up there. So far they've all been exhibitions of crafts, though I hope my artwork will also be displayed some day. My Japanese fabric purses have been the most popular requests - I think the patterns coupled with my perfectionist tiny hand-stitching is a mix they've not seen before.

6. Out of all the things your create, which would be your favorite items to work on??

I love creating the images for my artwork best but getting them printed successfully is sometimes a trial. So, probably my brooches. Although everyone makes felt flower brooches, I love picking the colours and matching the buttons and seeing them all together.

7. When first starting off on a new craft or technique, what would be some things you do when you first start learning them? DO you take classes? Are you self taught? Read books on certain topics, etc.?

Having gone to art school, I've had a lot of basic skills knocked into me that provide a great foundation for any new creative projects. Often, I'll just figure out a way to do something and get going, and then later I'll be reading some website or book and discover there's a much easier way to do it! Hopefully that's what makes my work a little bit different though.

8. What does your work space look like? What sort of things do you surround yourself with??

"Work space", hah. Despite co-owning a fairly large flat and working from home full-time, I don't have one. I'm very envious of all these bloggers with their fancy work rooms. I mostly work in my bedroom, sitting on my bed. I have a very small desk with my sewing machine, a laptop and then a bunch of IKEA trays that I use for keeping all the bits of a current project together. I have RSI in my arm so this actually works out well - sitting at a desk can get painful very quickly.

My room is full of books, vinyl records and several million cute Japanese things with happy faces. I also have lots of artwork on the walls by people like Deth P Sun, Jay Ryan and Argyle Whale, as well as gig posters from the band I'm in.

9. What advice would you give to those just starting to put themselves out there and sell their work? What have been some pros and cons you have encountered when it comes to creating and selling your work?

The main one I think, is not to get caught up in what other people are doing - whether they're selling more or copying your design or whatever. Everyone puts on their best face as a business so they may not be as successful as you think. Just concentrate on doing what you love and making it the best you can. Get involved with other crafty folks, share ideas on a blog and work hard!

I can't think of any bad things about creating and selling my work - it's hard to pay the bills every month but I'm happy just to be able to work at home and create things I love. The good things are way too many to mention. Every order I get is still a thrill, that someone likes my work enough to pay for it.

10. Five things you just could not live without:
1. My laptop - would just be impossible (ditto the internet)
2. Books - I read constantly and get a ton of inspiration from them
3. Sketchbook and pen - to record all the ideas I have every day
4. My friends and family - they're always so helpful and supportive.
5. At the moment, Picross for my Nintendo DS. I am totally obsessed.

Well be sure to visit Marceline's Etsy shop now and mention The Little Red Suitcase when ordering to recieve a free gift with your order!

Thank you Marceline:)

Tuesday, 20 January 2009

Craft Tutorial #1: "Framed Snowflake Mobile" by Amanda Johnson

Mixed in with interviews here on The Little Red suitcase, I will also be bringing you some highly crafty tutorials by some very creative individuals. Each tutorial will include full instructions as well as images. Plus, they will all be archived and at your disposal for whenever it is you would like to possibly take one on.

I am starting off my very first tutorial with a very chic, classy, inspiring, unique girl. Every time I visit her blog I find the most wonderful eye candy, whether it be the vintage clothes she comes across or the way she decorates a corner of her room, she has an eye for design. Mandi runs her own Vintage clothing shop on Etsy entitled
HalfCaf, is a designer for Hambly, and is a TAIF(The Art is Found) chick. So of course I knew that I had to ask if she would put together a craft tutorial for us, and well here it is!

"My heart belongs to the beautiful things in life, but the kind of beauty one has to search for. I love fashion and one of my favorite things to do is troll the thrift stores to find interesting pieces for my wardrobe. That's what I do for my home too- always looking in odd places and fun things. A favorite thing of mine is crafting. Random crazy stuff, scrap booking, photography, and drawing. I'm an interior design student and draw quite a lot for class, so it's nice to have a creative outlet that uses paper and glue instead of graphite and T-squares. :)"

"Framed Snowflake Mobile"

"Mobiles! They're swell to make. And even more so to look at! I have just decided that mobiles should become a season decoration in my home. Does anyone else think it is just absolutely depressing to take down Christmas decorations? The house always looks so bare around January. This year, I decided to keep up some wintery decorations, and even make a few just for fun! This mobile I made was for the latest prompt at The Art is Found. I'll share with you an easy little tutorial on how to make your own snowflake mobile in a frame."

All you need to complete this project is an empty frame, some colorful magazine clippings (which I always have on hand, stored in a manila envelope), twine (or ribbon, string, or fishing wire), tape (any kind will do!), and scissors.

2. I picked out some of the most graphic and colorful pieces from my magazine clippings stash, and cut them into circular shapes. If I didn't like the back of a page, I glued it together with a page I did like. Then, I simply folded the circular cut-out a few times so that I could cut designs into it, just like when I was a kid and made paper snowflakes at school.

I cut each snowflake into different sizes and patterns, to add some variety. I gotta admit, it's kind of thrilling unfolding the paper to see what shape you will find! :)

After making several paper snowflakes (the number depending on the size of the snowflakes and your frame) I tied them onto strings of twine, sometimes two snowflakes to a string.

Next, I flipped over my frame and began to decide where to put each string of snowflakes, and how long each one should hang. There's definitely no science to this, just pick something and go with it! Then I taped the strings to the top of the back of the frame, so that when winter is over, I can use the frame for something else.

love the simplicity of this project, how easy it is to use scraps that you can find around the house, and the limitless possibilities. I placed my frame by a window, because I like the way the light filters through the snowflakes. To bad the breeze is so cold this time of year, or it might be nice to see them flutter around! :)

Feel free to share your own framed mobiles
here in our comment section, and also be sure to check out The Art is Found prompt site for some more creative challenges!!!

Thank you Mandi.

Saturday, 17 January 2009

Handmade Nation.

You can imagine how I acted when I came across a wonderful book this past Fall entitled "Handmade Nation : The rise of DIY, Art, Craft, and Design."

There it was sitting on a shelf at a local New York City bookshop, calling to me with its Stitched United States image and its pink lettering on a black background. I was intrigued, I was inspired, and still am. Within its pages lies the story of 24 creative people and work from 5 essayists all on the subject of handmade. And if that's not enough for you, there is a documentary in which this book is a companion to and which will be released this Spring.

*Image from Readymade Issue 38*

I feel very lucky to be able to bring you this interview with Faythe, and I thank her for taking time out from her busy schedule to fit us in.

With her movie premiering all across the United States I can just start to imagine how hectic things will be with planning and traveling, its really awesome that she agreed to share some tid bits of how this project all started and also a little introduction into who she is.

There is just so much I can say about this project and how wonderful I think it is, and how important it is for it to be out there, in the big ole world being introduced to people who may not know what goes into all things DIY especially the people and their stories behind it. But I am going to stop myself and allow you to read more about it

from the women who started it all, and contributes in big ways to the handmade community itself.

*Faythe Levine*

1. One of the reasons I do this blog is to get an inside scoop of the masterminds behind all things handmade. So following along in that tradition, why not tell us a little about yourself, especially your creative beginnings. How did you settle upon the indie craft community?

I came across the indie craft community in early 2002 through a few very specific craft websites including, and It was through these sites that I began connecting with other makers who were doing similar things as I was. It was also around this time that I started up my business Flying Fish Design. In 2003 I heard about the first Renegade Craft Fair taking place in Chicago, only a few hours away from my home base of Milwaukee, WI and I applied. This was my first experience selling my work in a market environment. It was also my first time meeting a lot of the people I had become Internet friends with. That first Renegade was my "gateway drug" into the indie craft community. From there I continued to run my business Flying Fish Design full time for 3 more years, start Art vs. Craft Milwaukee’s indie craft fair, open my brick and mortar shop Paper Boat Boutique and Gallery that I co-own with Kim Kisiolek and begin work on Handmade Nation.

2. When I came across this book as well as your site, I finally felt like I found a topic that I could totally relate to. I pretty much grew up crafting and I felt like it was a topic that wasn’t really spoken about a lot or at least brought to others attention through film and book. What started this whole project, what pushed you to explore the subject of DIY across America?

From 2003-2006 my experiences traveling around the country to indeed craft fairs as a vendor, running my shop and coordinating Art vs. Craft I was exposed to an immense amount of incredible people and work and I felt compelled to document what was going on around me. I was concerned that the community wouldn’t be captured in the proper light. And I was also worried someone from the "outside" would come in and create some crappy craft expose reality type show and not show the important aspects of the community, for example, the bonds people had formed with one another, the counter economy we are creating, and the empowerment that makers feel when they create.

*Jenine Bressner being filmed*

3. The book is amazing and I cannot wait for the movie to come out. I know that the film was the beginning of it all and the book followed in its footsteps while the documentary is still in production. Usually its the book first and then the film. Why did the book come second? Why did you find it important to be able to place such a great book in people's hands as well as giving them a movie?

Initially I wanted to make a book, I am a photographer and it seemed to make sense to go that route. However, the idea of putting together a book and getting it published was really overwhelming and the reality of shooting a documentary was actually much easier to wrap my brain around because my best friend happens to be a filmmaker. I approached Micaela O’Herlihy in early 2006 with the idea of shooting the film for a year and she signed on. The two of us traveled around for what ended up being a year and a half gathering the footage for the final movie. The book came about after my editor Cris Siquiera cut an 8-minute teaser that we released on in April of 2007. The response to that clip was huge and three publishers approached me at that time. Princeton Architectural Press was the publisher I was most interested in and at that time I approached my friend and now co-author Cortney Heimerl to put together a formal proposal for Princeton that is now Handmade Nation the book. Having Princeton behind the project has given the documentary a lot of validity. There support has been invaluable to the soon to be released film.

4. So I have to say that I am a bit jealous that you got to meet so many wonderful, creative people along the way. What was the process like when it came to choosing the people that would be featured in your film as well as the book? What was it like to be able to sit and talk with them, see where they create? And also I have read that you traveled 19,000 miles during this whole process, share some pros and cons about that whole aspect!

Basically my process for choosing whom to interview was very simple. A lot of the featured interviewed makers I had worked with at Paper Boat or had some sort of online friendship with already established. However there were people that I was really excited about what they were doing and the documentary gave me an excuse to call them up and hope for an interview. Getting to do studio visits was by far the most exciting part of production. Having one-on-one time with people you respect creatively was an experience I will never forget and hope to get to continue with future projects. The entire process was very casual and friendly which was great so there were never any awkward moments of wishing I were somewhere else or anything like that.
The travel part of the project was pretty insane. During production Micaela was a single mom and a full time working artist so we scheduled our shoots over the weekends when she had child-care. We would cram in 3-4 full days of interviews when we were in a city. It was pretty insane and awesome.

*Jenny Hart of Sublime Stitching, in studio filming*

*Clip of Handmade Nation, courtesy of*

5. Aside from the Handmade nation project, I see that you are involved in other crafty endeavours. You co- own a brick and mortar shop that supports numerous crafters/ artists and designers alike and you also help run a bi-annual indie craft market. Basically, how do you do it? How does it feel to be so active in something you feel so passionate about?

People ask me how I balance my life all the time and to be honest I can’t image it any other way. I work all the time but I also take time to spend with my friends and relax. The thing is that there is all this stuff happening around the world, all these people who should know about each other and I feel like it is my responsibility to try and promote and connect everyone. I think this is just the beginning of a lot of our creative careers and I hope that the connections and work that we are doing now will establish life long relationships for all of us within the movement.

6. Ok, since you love to document all of the wonderful things being made by people all across the country, do you have any craft or art interests that you tend to get to work at in your down time (if you have any down time that is)

My time to work on my own creative projects is pretty minimal these days. Often if I have time I will work on promo items for Handmade Nation or Paper Boat by making flyers by hand or sewing a new banner for a show. I am a big fan of hand-drawn typography, which is something I have done for years. I do some embroidery. I am always photographing everything and everywhere I go- so I have a catalog of photos that spans the past 20 years of my life that is pretty intense. At some point I’d like to go back to painting and working on wall-based work, but I don’t see that happening any time in 2009.

7. DIY never really goes away as we all know, it just sometimes seems to take a backseat, get pushed under the rug for a bit. Why do you think there has been a sudden re-emergence this past few years of the whole handmade community? What would you say would be some key factors in this happening?

I believe there are a few key reasons that handmade has made resurgence in the past 5 years. The fact that most of us spend a lot of time sitting in front of a computer, the fact that we as a society are going through economic struggles pushes people to make things by hand for gifts, the recent green trend and the appreciation for handmade- including supporting artists, buying local, and consumer conscientiousness. Also, historically during times of war handcraft resurfaces. All of these reasons have combined into the current climate of the handmade frenzy.

8. One thing I shutter to think about is that handmade will possibly take that back seat again for a bit, to me it’s such a big part of my life and something that I could not personally live without. Do you feel that it is here to stay for good this time? And what would be some advice you would give to those out there who would want to help handmade thrive.

Something that I find interesting is the number of people who approach me at my events who are in there 40’s 50’s and 60’s telling me "they never stopped making things by hand". I think that it is important to remember that just because our generation has had a recent revelation that handmade makes us feel good people never stopped making. With that said, I’m sure some folks our age will set their knitting down after a bit, but for a lot of us D.I.Y. is a lifestyle not a trend.

9. Well our interview is coming to an end and soon Handmade Nation will be wrapping up, although it will all now live on through its film and book. Do you have any future plans for new projects? What next?

I will be touring with the film over the next year and hopefully working on a new book surrounding crafts, creativity, community and politics. I also hope to continue to do freelance curatorial work, putting together art shows is something I really enjoy.

10. And of course our usual 10th question to wrap up each interview..................five things you just cant live without:)

Bourbon on the rocks
Delicious food (top 3: sushi, salads and pizza!)
My BFF’s who keep me sane during the overbooked times

Be sure to visit The Handmade Nation Etsy shop and pick up a shirt or Sublime Stitch special embroidery pattern to show your support of The Handmade Nation project!! To find out more about premiere dates and other related news, head on over to the official website of Handmade Nation. A big thank you once again to Faythe, and best wishes!!!

All photos that were used in this interview are from The Handmade Nation Flickr, Myspace, and blog.

Friday, 9 January 2009

Skunk Boy Creatures.

The world of plush has really popped over the past few years and many a fabulous plush artists have emerged. The possibilities of this art form are endless and some of the creations have really taken my breath away and have left me in awe. Crafters of plush are really pushing the envelope and bringing us one of a kind pieces over and over again and leaving me with a need to try and whip up some of my own.
I am super delighted to bring you the following interview of one highly creative girl who sews up some very unique plush that I just admire oh so much and I am sure you will as well!

1. So Katie, lets start off with a little intro, the girl behind all of the plush creations:

Well, my name is Katie, I love music on vinyl, I take pictures in my off time, I play in two bands, and I'm totally enamored with my six year-old daughter.

2. Skunk
Boy Creatures is a rather interesting name. How in the world did this name come into play?

When I was just beginning, my best friend Amy was moving across the country and I wanted to make her something special. I really wanted it to be a hedgehog, but I really wasn't all that good at the time, so I quickly changed directions and created a cute little skunk. She named him "Skunkboy" and the rest is history. I felt like I was paying a bit of homage to her, since she is the one who really pushed me to get my stuff out there.

3. Tell us the story of how you started sewing, particularly, sewing up all of these unique hand sewn creatures:

When I started sewing a little over a year ago, it was only because I was looking for a creative outlet. I was making a lot of clothing, but I have a very old sewing machine that kept breaking so I switched to hand stitching. My first creature was a little brown owl that I carried around for weeks. I soon began making different animals, mostly as gifts for friends and family.

4. How do you come up with so many designs? Is there anything out there that really helps to inspire you and lead you down the path of new ideas?

two questions really have the same answers. Sometimes an animal will pop into my mind and I automatically have an idea of the way it should look. Alchemy is a bit more challenging, but an awesome way to create something new. It's so great to have a different perspective coming in, since (obviously) I can't escape my own. It can be difficult when I can't see the finished product in my head, or I'm unsure of a color palette that I've used, but all of my alchemy animals have turned o
ut to be pretty satisfying. Monkey, the sweetheart owls, Karl the Koala, sleepy Lamb, Betty the Giraffe... all of these were other people's visions.
5. If you have a work space or studio, share with us what might be surrounding you to help get you into that creative mode.

I'm in the process of putting my studio together, so right now it's in pieces, but lovely pieces. I have a lot of things from other plush artists that I really respect, such as: a swan from Lapomme, a woodland creature from Astulabee, a sleepy Sam from the Black Apple, and my latest addition which is a little white lion with antlers and a bow tie from Fern. I also love vintage furniture and I've acquired some GREAT

6. Your creatures are made up of so many different elements. So much thought and detail go into all of them. What sort of fabrics and embellishments do you usually use when sewing these up? Where would you typically go and get all of the bits and pieces that bring your owls, bears and even Narwhal's to life?

I do tend to use a lot of felt as a base. I don't always, but a lot of my owls and such are started with felt. I love to accent with vintage fabric, or, if I think the fabric is strong enough and I have enough of it, I'll use it for the whole thing. My favorite places to get my supplies are flea markets. I adore buttons and unique fabrics, so it's perfect for me.

7. What other things keep you interested besides sewing such amazing plush? Do you have any other interests that tend to keep you busy an
d creating?

I always answer the "what else are you interested in" question the same way. It's music. I keep very busy playing in bands and searching out new (to me) music on vinyl. I also take pictures, but I'm less inspired by that these days, at least as a profession. I still love photography as a recreation, though. We just got a LOAD of Polaroid film from this elderly couple on Craig's List, so of course I'm very excited about that.

9. It appears that you have quite a response to your cre
atures. How does it feel? What has it been like running your own Etsy shop? What would be some advice you would give others looking to get into the world of promoting their art form online?

If you could see me right now, you'd see that I can't even begin to contain my grin. It's amazing that people love my creatures. Really. It's wonderful. I never would've imagined in my wildest dreams running my own shop and having my own blog. It's surreal. On, the other hand, having my own shop has been a bit stressful at times. The fear of shipping to the wrong person accidentally, or slow times... or busy times. This holiday season was INSANE. It was my first, and I wasn't the slightest bit prepared for the volume of animals I'd be sewing. I just barely made my deadline, which was super stressful and really didn't give me proper time to do enough family things before Christmas. I'm a really terrible person to give promotion advice. I've traded with some other sellers and bought two showcases, but the best thing that can happen is to have a popular blogger feature you. I'm too ashamed to push my stuff on people, I've just gotten really lucky to get a bit of attention. Also, a blog of your own never hurt anyone.

10. Five things you just couldn't, not one bit, live without:

My Wurlitzer, Vox Jaguar, CP-70, VK-1, and Rhodes. Hee, hee... no, those are all pianos... really: flea markets, tea, records, a piano, and my family (cheesy, I know, but if you met my daughter Hope...).


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