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Tuesday, February 22, 2011

Featured Artist: Sister Shop Grand Opening!

Apparently, I am quite the influence (for better or worse) because my little sister has just opened her very own Etsy shop called A Gaslite Romance selling handmade Steampunk jewelry. Of course, I am super proud of her creativity, dedication, and willingness to try something new. I also happen to really like her pieces and covet the necklace above. I guess it's not much of a stretch to imagine that a woodland creature-loving, tree-hugging crafter like me might really love Neo-Victorian inspired jewelry, so I figured you might too.

However, I didn't just want to shamelessly promote my little sister (even though she deserves it), but give you more of a "Featured Artist" experience. You will have to bare with me as this is my first interview and I wanted to be as informative as possible. Anyway, hope you enjoy!

Interview with A Gaslite Romance:

Q: What is the most important fact a buyer should know about you?
A: The most important thing buyers should know is that I pour my heart and soul into all of my pieces and I truly hope that comes across in the finished product.

Q: Why did you choose jewelry as your craft of choice? Or did it choose you?
A: I would say it was a little of both. I fell in love with Steampunk jewelry and got the crazy idea that I could try my hand at it.

Q: What is your favorite thing about creating jewelry?
A: My favorite thing about creating jewelry is the process. It starts with an idea and sometimes it turns out exactly how I envisioned it. Other times it takes a completely different route and the end result is even better than I envisioned.

Q: What movies/books/media/artists have inspired your style?
A: I am mostly inspired by all things Victorian and the Steampunk culture. That particular era is just timeless. While technology is a necessary evil, I am just fascinated by the beauty and complexity of the mechanical workings of technology of the past. I am also inspired by my sister who has a much keener sense of creativity. 
  (this is me blushing)

Q: What are your Top Three favorite Etsy shops and why?
A: Steampunkjunksupply - They offer great quality and variety of supplies necessary for my craft.
Nouveaumotley - Is the very first shop that got me interested in Steampunk jewelry.
Edmdesigns - Has amazingly beautiful and intricate Steampunk designs that I can only wish I was capable of.

Q: Where do you see you, your craft and your shop in twelve months?
A: I hope that in twelve months I will continue to grow as an artist. I hope that I will gain experience necessary to hone my craft. I hope that I will still be able to enjoy my hobby while sharing it with others.

Note: If you or others are interested in being a "Featured Artist", then let me know and I would be happy to spread the love.

Etsy Trade Success!

I have been offered many trades at my shop on Etsy, but none of them have intrigued me enough to participate (unfortunately, money is a necessity to continue my hobby) until Annie Carvalho, a fiber artist, came along. Immediately her work stood out and I saw an opportunity to get my dog, Jersey immortalized in soft, lifelike felt and grabbed at the chance!

I was nervous at first to put myself out there and risk all the hours/dollars, but we swapped many emails and pictures, which helped to ease my fears. I finally sent off the infamous Hobbit Hole with the same trepidation I always feel when I send one of my creations out into the world, but I was enthusiastic to receive my sculpture and felt it was truly worth it.

I know I am not alone when I say that I love to receive mail (sans bills), so when I saw the little postage box waiting for me today after work I was so giddy I couldn't get in the door fast enough. After ripping through the packing tape, I gently lifted out my very own, miniature sculpture of my favorite furry buddy. It was so much more than I could have imagined and well worth the wait! It will serve as a precious memorial long after she is gone.

Check out the Hobbit Hole at its new home as a photo prop for Annie Carvalho's whimsical fiber sculptures!

Wednesday, February 2, 2011

Welcome to the New Year!

I realize that we are now a month into the new year, but it has been a crazy month to say the least. I have already taught an entire novel, rearranged my craft space, broken the zipper on my favorite winter coat, gotten over a horrible flu and survived two snow days! However, through this all I have continued to be grateful for one of the holiday gifts I received as it has continued to inspire me. I was lucky enough to receive Craft Magazine issues one through ten!

I have always enjoyed their website, but the tangible copies are priceless. They reserve a very special spot on my crafty shelves. Not only are the projects listed easy to follow, but give me a chance to branch out with everything from cooking recipes to new sewing projects. I am able to practice old skills and learn new ones with this awesome collection. It was one of my favorite gifts this year and I hope to make it a favorite of someone else's soon.