Welcome to another blog here on WordPress! I will be featuring 3 Etsy Handmade Sellers again this week. Our topic for the week is to learn what do Etsy sellers and Autumn (Fall) have in common? Well, it is all about creating in the fall and I have asked them just what is going on in their studio in the next couple of weeks?
Most of us are really busy getting ready for the Winter Holiday Season and are making many products by hand. Possibly the rest of the peeps who aren’t creating are thinking about their Gift list!
My First Handmade/Handcrafted Seller is Harry Wood:
Harry Wood at Oscarcrow not only make fabulous jewelry but he is the go-to person for all kinds of art supplies. Please do not only pursue his handcrafted jewelry but he also has an “in” to purchase Vintage Frozen Charlotte’s and he also has a kiln (and many other tools for making!). He makes wonderful pottery findings with Raku finishes! It is an honor for me to showcase Harry as he is such a wonderful talent! I own several of Harry’s Raku finished pieces and a few Frozen Charolettes and have always been pleased with my purchases!
Harry has a basement full of supplies and art! If you ask Harry how to describe him as an artist he would probably reply that he is a maker, he is always learning, super curious, a teacher for other makers, a person who gives, and an explorer of eclectic and esoteric realms as a talisman maker. I would give almost anything to be able to visit he and his wife and explore his studio to see his workbench and see all his different methods of making!
Ellen Wodoslawsky Gonchar’s Etsy shop ( BufferflyLoftDesigns) is filled with delights! Ellen has been in the “jewelry business for some time and in the sale of jewelry. She began to be interested in the construction of jewelry after a time. She found that she had many broken pieces and wanted to give life to these. She studies books for a while and began to experiment. Ellen’s designing methods she says are best described as “one of organized chaos.” Her work table in her studio is covered with “…vintage bits and pieces, beads, rhinestones, brass stampings, and filigree along with other new jewelry components.” Ellen’s pieces are unique and are for a woman who wants to stand on her own two feet and aren’t afraid to be bold in her fashion sense. I love Ellen’s design style, I admire her work and want one of her pieces for my jewelry collection.
Last but certainly now least is another of my favorite jewelry designers, Lori Prull Meyer. Her shop ParisienneGirl on Etsy showcases romance! Oh-La-La, Lori’s designing style and methods are delightful confections for the “unabashed romantic soul who has grace, timeless beauty which infuses delight by wearing her jewelry.” Lori makes beautiful jewelry that will fit any woman who wants to sparkle! Would you like to feel like Audrey Hepburn– buy some of Lori’s jewelry for yourself or for a magical gift for another. I love her offerings and she has beautiful collections coming regularly, all I can say if you see something you like, get it right away so you do not lose out ~ you will not regret it! I love her style and would really love to see each piece in her collections! I cannot wait to get a piece myself!
Thanks for reading the blog, and be sure to check out the Etsy Sellers featured for all your Holiday Shopping needs, it is so important to shop handcrafted! These three artisans make quality jewelry and you will love what you buy. It is so important to support the community of handmade/handcrafted artists we have here in the USA!
When I blog about overseas artists I will let you know because it is important to shop small business no matter where someone lives. We artists are just trying to make it in this world and delight in making products just for you!!
Peace to you, and thanks so very for reading, and please comment and share! I will be doing a blog each Wednesday so do come back and read each week! Some of these artists are members of Artisan Indie which is a community of Artist who are learning how to run a small business and how to make it grow, come visit us there!
Everyone or every item I blog about I do not receive compensation. I want you to know that I do support persons or brands on my Lifestyle blog because I love what they do or what they sell without any compensation whatsoever. Please feel free to contact me if you ever have any questions as I am happy to answer!
Just imagine becoming the way you used to be as a very young child, before you understood the meaning of any word, before opinions took over your mind. The real you is loving, joyful, and free. The real you is just like a flower, just like the wind, just like the ocean, just like the sun. Don Miguel Ruiz
Why do I support Etsy Sellers so MUCH? Well, I love the handmade seller. I am a handmade seller and want to support my cohorts (and I am an affiliate blogger, but still — eh). I used to be a Team Captain for an Etsy Team (loved it, had to give it up due to health issues). I also love the mantra or basic belief of supporting small businesses. There is just something to me, having something that is made by a someone. I know, I am helping a family directly, and for the most part I am helping a woman owned business (not always but for the most part).
I am showcasing Edis Lamps on Etsy. Panagiotis and Despina own Edi’s Lamps and are a husband and wife team who work from their home. As with many creative businesses who work from home there is a difficulty not working 24-7 and carving out that time that is work versus home life.
Despina answered the same questions posed to the participants of the last for the last 3 blogs.
Panagiotis and Despina, spend their lives and loves as a couple “in life and creation.” We run our Etsy shop together and we love it! I learned from the couple that running their business is really challenging as working from home draws a really “thin line” between your personal and working time.
The first thing they do in the morning is enjoy their breakfast! When they worked outside the home there was not enough time to take part in eating breakfast together so they have started a new family ritual. After breakfast, Despina sits in front of the computer to check e-mails, social media accounts and to update their Etsy shop. Panagiotis is responsible shipping, buying supplies, printings etc. After the nitty-gritty of the business tasks are complete, the design process comes into play. They sit together and discuss about new designs and products.
Being a Joyful Entrepreneur for Panagiotis and Despina is being able to do things they were not able to do before like “taking a five-minute break to just look at the sea view from our balcony…” (they live in Athens, Greece) listening to music they love and sing while working. (Oh me, oh my, I have hit my perfect interpretation of being Joyful!) Panagiotis and Despina are able to breathe and enjoy. It is not that they do not have busy times, they do! But they love everything they do!
Despina and Panagiotis are excited when creating new products that meet the goals of their shops and find ways to celebrate every little milestone they reach. The key to success for them is being open and ready to learn new things that they will develop through time.
The couple tries to stop everything at 8 p.m. at the latest and make plans to do something fun like a walk, see friends, family, or watch a movie.
Panagiotis and Despina’s daily schedule is about to change dramatically as in November of this year as they are expecting their first baby! While this could be an upcoming challenge for the couple they are staying positive. The couple is “fairly sure” that things work out in the best possible way! (So am I and I am excited for them!).
I appreciate all the participants for this short series. I will have new topics and other Etsy sellers/shop owners to showcase. I do that you give some love, check out, visit and buy from all the Creatives shop owners that I featured in the past Blog entries. Also, I hope you visit Panagiotis and Despina’s Shop named Edi’s Lamps and give them some love, plus purchase a fantastic light! I know that I am ordering one!
Oh and please be sure to visit Sarah Sewell at the Joyful Entrepreneur whose Coaching has inspired me to be Positive and to Seek in my journey!
Lots of love & hugs
p.s. I love this couple as my name is Nike the Greek Goddess of the Samorace (for reals!)
Remember the previous post where I asked my creative friends who are in the The Joyful Entrepreneurto join me for a blog series where I have asked a series of questions about their days, their nights and any daily rituals? If not check it out! What do I mean by Rituals? I mean a “series of actions or types of behavior regularly chosen” by the creative to get them through each day while remaining Joyful.
Before I retired from my profession, I worked as a Social Worker for the Texas Department of Protective Services. My university degree is in Social Work and Sociology. I worked varied jobs from a Child Protective Services Worker to a Statewide Intake Training Specialist IV. I loved my work; I was (and am) passionate about protecting souls, but there came a point where all the Joy, hadbeen totally rendered out of my soul. I happened to see a video on Facebook and a sweet lady’s face was on the screen. I thought wow, what Joy, and what can I learn and refresh? That lady is Sarah Sewell. I felt the Universe sent me there that day.
I am very interested in people (even as an introvert) and most of my work was not in my creative side. I have created since I was little and have always made art. In my profession I dealt social problems, abuse, neglect, and exploitation of children, families, persons who experience some kind of disablities and persons who are elderly. Heavy… yet so very needed. I had a calling to work my work, and I gave it my all. As I said I have an interest in my fellow human, I have a genuine love for people, and their maximum safety. Nevertheless, after 22 years, it was a time for a break.
Currently, I am using some of my talents here on WordPress to delve into the creative mind, my cohorts, whom I spend a lot of online time with. And I am impressed, inspired, excited, I think WOW on a daily basis – I need to be a part of this creative group and learn more about business. I had just been playing with my shop on Etsy, not feeling very successful. I wanted a change, and I found my place, my creative people!
I am loving every minute of it and it fills me with Joy! I am seeing how very hard this creative people work and they stay Joyful! So a long intro I know… I am wordy (LOL, my mind is always working even when I am so quiet). I promise this series will become more structured and concise for you. I want you to know me, where I am coming from and how we creatives need to be centered.
A wealth of applause for the first Creative (for this blog) is Sarah Lesowski Devantier is the owner of KnitaBitofWhimsy.etsy.com(Note: permissions given for the use of the photograph) She lives in British Columbia.
Sarah Lesowski Devantier told me a remarkable story! She said “I love that you chose my Rainbow Unicorn hat! It was actually designed by my daughter when she was five! She was very specific about the mane colours, and that it HAD to have a tail! She got the very first one (of course).” I think as you see as we continue this series that we creatives, have creative children! But really what is more magical than a Rainbow Unicorn! Ah, perfection!
Sarah’s ritual in the morning, begins with her son (3 years old) climbing into bed with she and her husband for a quick cuddle before the hubs heads off to work.
Like many Small business owners, or Etsy Entrepreneurs Sarah is a SAHM (stay at home mom) and with all that entails, she has to whip up breakfast for her children. She gets herself a gigantic cup of coffee (a woman after my own heart!) before they start the day.
As you read my blog posts about our Etsy Entrepreneurs, in the mornings they all check in with social media to check the pulse of what is going on in this on-line life we all live (fb Pinterest, Etsy and instagram) over their coffee or a Cuppa Tea, then it is off and running, dealing with the kiddos, getting them to class, and playing with their children before work. Once it is all settled their workday commences. With Sarah — if she has a couple hours while the kiddos are at school and preschool, she will work on the paperwork side of things: updating Etsy listings, planning social media posts, researching SEO (Search engine Optimisation). Oh the life of the creative and just what the heck is SEO! All the business side of things take so much time and there is so much to learn. Some of us, it hurts our brains!
Then for Sarah, the day flies by after picking up the kids, errands and home. There is time for play, housework, a hope that the kiddos entertain themselves and then Dinner! Their family has a ritual of dinner all together. Sarah has an “awesome hubby” who will clean up after dinner, play with the kiddos again and then it is time for Sarah to work. She is a knitter, so she may create a shawl or a simple hat (Simple? Nah, just go look at her work!). Sarah says the nice thing about “…knitting is that it’s something you can do while doing something else! I’ll typically knit while my husband and I watch tv (there are a few series that I probably couldn’t pick the main characters out of a line up! 😃 ). Then he heads off to bed, and I’ll often stay up later to work on projects. I’m a night owl, so that’s my quiet time. As a complete introvert, this time allows me to recharge.” I have an admiration for Sarah and an affinity as many of us creatives are introverts, very much in our own head space creating, and creating. I think or the repetitive clicks of Sarah’s knitting needles as soothing to my soul. Nighttime, is a time is a time for Sarah to recharge, maybe read a bit of a book and really enjoys fantasy novels.
Oh — there is a Major Postscript (P.S.) to this story, Sarah’s divinely creative 6 year old daughter… she has plans for unicorn slippers and Sarah believes there is some sort of a knitted cat hat in her future too. Sarah calls her 6 year old girl her “creative director.” Sarah is very mindful that when her shop is very busy that she takes time out to play with the kids, and braid her daughter’s hair. She said, that is why she works at home.
Onto our next creative for this blog who is Sheila Ryan of Babymoon who lives not but a couple hours away from me in down South IH 35 to San Antonio, TX. I have spent much time in San Antonio for pleasure and business. It is a beautiful and historic city. I cannot seem to find the zip drive with the Alamo pictures, oh well, next time.
Sheila says that being a work-at-home creative type is both challenging and freeing. She finds it challenging due to the daily duties to attend, getting the kiddos to school on time, maintaining home responsibilities and attending to the needs of the other kids at home. Sheila causes my jaw to drop, saying “being mom,chauffeur, chef and groundskeeper is a full-time job, but my true passion is to create and make beautiful products for people to enjoy.” what a day?
I find Moms today busier than ever. Always a finger to the pulse of life, to have so much on their plates. I have a lot of admiration! I am a mom of two adult children and have two grandsons. I am amazed parents (don’t want to leave out the dads doing it too!) today, and especially those running a creative business full time while being SAHM (or as Sheila says a Work at home mom WAHM).
Below a gorgeous example of Sheila’s work. Click on the picture to take you to her shop. (Note: permissions given for the use of the photograph).
Sheila states that as soon as she is at home from the morning drop off, she checks in on her orders. Sheila’s shop offers custom orders from both her Etsy shop and her personal connections. She works on those first and then off she goes to the design and production of those orders. She is always working on designs for the upcoming season (remember I told you creative minds are always creating). Sheila states “In between filling orders, I care for kids, reading book with them or navigating playtime or outings, and lunch, then we run errands, which usually includes dropping off packages at the post office. There is a lot to keep up with in the afternoons once my little people take a nap, so I try to maximize that time for designing what I’ll need to sew out the next day. Often, the afternoon goes too fast, and then I rush to pick up school kids and think about dinner for everyone.”
In order for Sheila and her family to function they have tried to simplify their routines so life is easier to manage. Summertime was the time this year for the family to simplify the “things,” that were no longer bringing joy to the family, excess clothing, books, toys shoes and she even let go of Craft supplies! As I feel a catch in my throat, I know there is a lesson for me there, I need to simplify too.
You creatives out there, do you feel that? Are there things you can do to simplify your life to create more, joy and more success for you own being? Sheila says “I admit that I’ve never been the most organized or kept the tidiest house, but having the income from a blossoming little shop gives me freedom to seek professional help in that department which again, gives me time to focus on what I love doing.” I see another teaching moment for me! How about you?
Sheila has been able to feel the rhythm of her creative day and juggle activity of a mom, home responsibilities while maintaining the energy to spend on her shop, design and sewing. She has felt the extra energy to get it all done. Many days her mind is buzzing even when she need to sleep. Sheila has found that the balance of having a “regular life with others forces me to pay attention to my own need to rest and sleep.” Sheila stated she would not trade anything for these days. She remarks that “It’s still a process, but even getting started makes the time I spend on my passion less “guilty” and more relaxed.”
I have enjoyed meeting these two women, and giving a rendition and insight into their Creative Lives, Families and their Etsy Shops. This is only the beginning of our travels… I willl have to get with Sarah Sewell to find out how many stories there are to tell!
It has been fun! Thanks for reading, please star, heart, share and comment. I love you all for reading and just LOVE. I’ll be seeing you soon. I will be posting 3-4 (or more) times per week!
I really wanted to showcase a number of creative artists for this blog as they really inspire me! I asked four artists to tell me how they go about their days,from waking up, to what they do the first thing in the morning, to how they schedule in their work time, to getting ready for bed and do they have any nightly rituals. I will be able blog my “internal quota” once I hear back from these busy creatives!
You know how I love the Gulf of Mexico,on South Padre Island.
You know my love of flowers so you will always get a few pictures from my garden or my pond.
Since the women I am interviewing are are all creatives, (I am owner of Objectsandoddities) I want to know how they fit their work into their days. I can say from personal experience that we creatives tend to be creating in their minds all the time. I also asked another question what (many of them SAHM IE: Stay at home moms) the experience is running a small Etsy business, raising small children, not losing their sanity, most times being so busy running a one person shop all the while staying positive.
I am always so curious as to how my fellow creatives stay Joyful when having a growing small business. It is a goal for me to stay Joyful & Positive. I want to internalize this in my soul. I want to note that many of the blogs from today on, (until I tell you otherwise) will be Etsy sellers who belong (as well as myself) to The Joyful Entrepreneur. We learn from Sarah Sewell’s who is a “Business Coach for Creatives” and her mantra is to “Stay Positive” and experience Joy!” Sarah is a huge help and support for the handmade seller. I do not know how she does what she does. I am so happy to be a part of her wonderful group. Please check her site out or ask questions, I will steer you to her group!
My first creative I spoke with online is Catherine Norris, who owns the MemoryThreadCo. She really inspired me! She was the first to answer all my questions I posed to her. I really appreciate her getting with me, answering so honestly and quickly! I love her handmade art! This beautiful picture is out of her shop and I have her permission to use the picture.
I chose this beautiful item as it gave me joy to look at it! It is a child’s drawing carefully stitched to a handkerchief. What a treasure to have!
Catherine lives in the United Kingdom with her husband and their daughter in a very typical 3 bed semi (I needed to clarify what a 3 bed semi was, all you who read from other places get to laugh at me!!). I learned a 3 bed semi is a like a 3 Bedroom home in the United States. Catherine stated that she lives in a common area for young families. Catherine’s hubby gets up early in the morning for work. The first thing in the morning Catherine hears is her little girl’s voice calling “SUN’S UP!!!!” (who could not get Joy from that!). Catherine is not a morning person (I am not either… another similarity for a creative). Catherine must eat a good breakfast and have a “cuppa” to have a great day. I had to ask again what it was and it is a cuppa learning that telling me that her “cuppa” is tea and is essential!
Catherine walks her daughter to school, after she has about 6 hours for work. Typically, she responds to any Etsy enquiries, then she sews. Her “studio is in the is in the “box room,” and she has shelves up to the ceiling for her fabric.” Another ritual she has is listening to “BBC radio while she works and she loves a programme called Woman’s hour.” Catherine has a small garden and likes to cook wholesome food.
As with any small business owner, Catherine feels “quite rushed because I have this deadline of 3pm to get out of the house for the school run.” Once she returns home she spends times with her daughter, grabs her a “biscuit” (cookie is US), a glass of milk and they read a book together. Her daughter is 5 and “her reading is coming on so well.” She has dinner to cook, a child to get to bed and all the normal things one needs to do before bed.
Catherine told me that she is always positive as she loves what she does. This is a drawing below is that of a work in progress. It is a very romantic piece, with handwritten notes stitched on linen napkins for a wedding present to his bride. “There was one where he’d sketched a portrait of her, and one of them was her something blue. I loved making those. How can you not be positive with so much love around you.
Catherine says “That’s the thing, my work is all about love really.” Do give Catherine’s shop some love!
Next time I will showcase more Etsy sellers and some of my own work too! I need to wrap this up and make some jewelry!
Thank you for reading. Hit the Star button if you liked the blog, also feel free to comment. Feel free to share the blog if you so choose!
lots of joy, love and peace.