Tell us about your business.Gilded Works encompasses the work of Botanical Artist and Artisan, Christine M. Leddy. She works in watercolor, colored pencil, pen & ink, metal leaf, and textiles. Gilded Works is based in Connecticut. Commissioned work can be original art for wedding themes, purses made from the finest materials and gemstones, and inspirational cards that incorporate Christine's artwork with encouraging quotes. Christine earned her certification as a Botanical Illustrator at the NY Botanical Garden in an effort to deal with the heart ache and loss of her divorce. She started Gilded Works in 2012. While creating the inspirational card line, she was diagnosed with Breast Cancer. Though it was a difficult path, she is now involved with support groups and hopes to use her experience to produce a line of cards for breast cancer survivors. She is also a full-time manager for a private insurance company.
What makes your business stand out?In a world of computer generated art and mass produced textiles, Gilded Works offers the finest in original art, one of a kind evening purses, and cards that combine fine art and encouraging words that inspire. GW focuses on innovative design while utilizing the tools and techniques of an age gone by. GW products are designed to be heirlooms for future generations. The line of cards are a growing area for the company to meet the demand for unique, custom designed invitations, holiday cards, and religious markets.
What's the best business advice you've received?Don't quit your day job. Starting a business can be daunting but it can also be a nightmare if you don't have a steady income to cover life's overhead costs. Be conservative about loans, dipping into nest eggs, and overhead costs. Though your passion may be art, you need to understand and pay close attention to the financial side of your decisions.
Mark Your Calendar
NominationsJune 3–Aug. 29, 2014
Nominate yourself or other aspiring makers.Nominate yourself
JudgingJune 23–Sept. 8, 2014
Judges will select finalists throughout this period.Meet the judges
Online VotingSept. 15–Oct. 13, 2014
Vote for your favorite American makers.See the finalists
Winners AnnouncedOct. 17, 2014
2014 Award Winners and Audience Choice Winner announced.See past Award Winners
American Made EventNov. 7–8, 2014
Join us for our annual event in New York City.Buy tickets now