Sunday, 28 February 2010

Thrifted Finds!

Well first of all I just want to say welcome back to The Little Red suitcase, I hope for this to be one of many more interviews and share entries of inspiration to come.

Michelle Sanders is one creative lady. I met her last year at a scrap booking event. Aside from her scrap booking skills, Michelle creates one of a kind, beautiful, vintage inspired jewelry pieces. I thought it would be fun to dig a little into the mind that conjures up all of these designs, so here it goes!

1. Aside from many other creative things you do, how did you start making jewelry?

Ok, funny story…I was about 13 or so and my parents had drug me along with them to a craft show (which they did often). I found a pair of earrings made out of wire wrapped marbles and asked my mom if she would get them for me. Knowing how kids are she told me if I didn’t ask for anything else the whole day she would come back and get them for me. At the end of the day that is the only thing I wanted. My mom asked why that? Why did I want THOSE earrings so badly? I told her because I thought I could make some like it. So she shelled out the $12 for them. I took them home and immediately dug through my brother’s old marbles and started making jewelry. Wow that was a LONG time ago!

2. Describe the process that goes into you deciding on a design, what goes with what and if its a keeper or a re-do.

Well I have sort of a strange process and I haven’t decided if having a touch of ADD is a good thing or a bad thing. I normally have any number of pieces going at the same time because I can’t focus on one thing at a time. My brain won’t let me. As I’m tying this right now I have a million ideas running through my head. It’s exhausting really! Normally I start with a pendant or a vintage item and I build from there. I like to go through my stuff and make little Ziploc bags of things that I want to go together in a piece and then I go back later and work on the piece. That helps keep me focused and helps make the most of my creative outbursts! LOL! As for it being a keeper or not, I don’t think about it too much…I just let it flow and if I make something that doesn’t sell or I don’t wanna keep it for myself, then I’ll rework it.

3. So your business is called Thrifted finds, do you have a favorite thrift shop in your area that you go to? What do you always keep an eye out for? What sort of pieces call out to you?

I have a couple thrift places that I go to locally but the south is not the best place to find good thrifted items. There are a few that I frequent for items for myself, like a groovy little vintage clothing place called “Time Warp” and it’s sister store “Honeymoon Bungalow” has great house wares. Normally my best thrifted finds come from estate sales and little old ladies cleaning out their jewelry boxes. My parents deal in antiques so I often go “shopping” at her house! It’s really a win, win…we get to spend time together and I get some great finds.

4. Now we all pretty much have spaces that we love to sit down and create at, whether it is in a corner in a huge room or even at your kitchen table. Describe your creative space and what you surround yourself with to help inspire you.

I’m embarrassed to say that I have a craft room and I don’t even use it. We live in a tiny house so it’s our only storage so it tends to get out of control. Plus it isolates me from my family so I prefer to work where I can be close to them. Normally I scrapbook at the coffee table in the living room and I make my jewelry pieces at the kitchen table. Yes…my house is a mess. But you would be crazy inspired if you sat down at my kitchen table! LOL!

5. Any other crafty hobbies peak your interest, and why?

Well I scrapbook and do paper crafts. I have ever since I was in grade school. I love paper crafts in general really. I’ve always collected stickers and loved making cards and putting pictures in a memory book. I just evolved with the industry I guess. I had some of the very first scrapbooking magazines ever printed. I also like to sew but I don’t sew very well! LOL! I just do little projects for myself. Actually I only bought my sewing machine to sew on my scrapbook pages but being the thrifty person I am I had to find other things to do with it to justify the purchase!

6. When you're in a creative rut, what sort of things do you do to pull yourself out of it to get back into creating again?

I look through my inspiration folder on my computer for pictures I’ve gathered while surfing the net. But I get most of my inspiration just by digging in my stash of vintage pretties. For me that is the best way to get the juices flowing again.

7. Ok, last one.............and it’s just a random fun one. Silver or gold?? And why? :)

Hmmmm…If it’s something I’m purchasing I get silver normally but lately I’ve been loving working with antique gold in my jewelry pieces. I think it’s because it’s very vintage…It wasn’t until the 90s that we all trended towards silver so I guess when you embrace vintage you sort of develop a love for gold again.

Be sure to check out Michelle's shop and enter "The Little Red Suitcase" in the comment section when checking out and you will receive 15% from your purchase!

Also leave a comment in the comment section of this post for your chance to win this beautiful bangle set from Michelle. You have until Monday, March 8th 12pm eastern time.

Thank you Michelle!


Cynthia said...

Beautiful Michelle:) I love your pieces!!!! Yummy vintage for sure:) Fabulous interview Patty:)

Dana said...

Love all your jewelry Michelle! Knowing that you have a little one at home, yet you still find time to be creative is so inspiring to me. Thanks for sharing your story.

Beth said...

she's amazing. nuff said.

Anonymous said...

great interview! And gorgeous pics! very creative lady!

shelliebabin said...

After I started reading Michelle's blog over one year ago, I started thinking about making my own jewelry because she made it seem so fun and easy! So, I took a class, bought some goodies and made a few necklaces. I have pretty much lost my desire to make anything else for now, but I look forward to making more one day. Michelle is one of the most eccentric chics I know. Don't ever lose your snazzy uniqueness, Michelle--xo.

kanishk said...

Fabulous interview Patty:)
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