first off, can i just say that i'm really, REALLY happy to have this month's artist on my blog? if you take a peek at my inspiration slideshow on the right-hand bar, many of my items were hers. like i had to cut back to give others a chance to be in that little photo montage. i totally don't remember how i found her shop, but i do know that i love everything in it. EVERYTHING! which is almost impossible...i'm quite a picky girl!(: so, here's the one, the only, barberryandlace ...
1.)Tell us a little bit about yourself! (name, location,pets, family, etc.)My name is Leigh and I live in Loveland, Colorado. I live with my boyfriend, Mike (who also works from home), our pup Sadie and our two kitties, Molly and Bert. Needless to say, our two bedroom condo is quite busy!
2.)How did you become to be an artist?
I've always loved to create things. I made greeting cards for a while and loved doing it. I kind of fell into jewelry and it's such a great fit for me! I love seeing things come together and ordering supplies that I think will make a great piece. It's all very exciting!
3.)What inspires you?
Lots of things. I really love vintage things, pastels, the "shabby chic" look... I like that my studio has a window so I can see nature. I love watching the seasons change.
4.)What is your creative proccess like?Usually I'll find something that I absolutely love and try to make it into something someone else might love. I just love the creating process... finding things that inspire great pieces.
5.)What do you do in your free time?(besides creating)
Free time... what's that? :) I have a part time job as a waitress/bartender that takes up my weekends. I usually work about 25 hours in those three days to afford myself the time to create and sell jewelry the rest of the week. I'm also getting geared up for my first craft fair in May, so getting my booth design put together and making the jewelry for that is also very time consuming... but I love it.
6.)What would give as advice to someone just starting out on Etsy?
Don't give up and MARKET. I was fortunate to have built my blog up before I started my shop, so I already had free ears to listen. I think my biggest success has come from word of mouth... friends blogging about the shop and sponsoring giveaways. I always remind myself: you have to spend money to make money and marketing is the best money spent.
7.)How do you promote your work? My blog, others' blogs, giveaways, email marketing, handing out business cards like it's nobody's business, twitter, etc. Social media networks are AMAZING... as is word of mouth.
8.)In ten years, where would you like to be?
Goodness... that's tough. I can tell you that THIS year, I'd like to move my shop into another location. Possibly a store front, or maybe just my garage. I just need to have room to expand!
9.)What handmade possesion is closest to your heart?
My grandma made me a cookbook of all our old Amish family recipes and I think it's awesome. I'm not a great cook, but having it all in one place and made by my grandma is really special to me.
10.)What would you like to see more of on Etsy? Less of?
Oh my gosh... I'm obsessed with the little knit animal hats for babies. I think they're DARLING! Less of? Can I say jewelry? I'd like to corner that market! ;)