Tell us about your business.When I bought my first scanner and realized that I could do my own printing is when I decided to start this business venture. I initially started out selling packs of Christmas cards that I printed and hand glittered. I then added a line of Halloween cards. I love working with vintage and recycled papers. I found a stack of old music books in a second hand store which inspired me to create a line of paper rosette ornaments. That gave me another product to feature my art on. A broken and falling apart ledger from the 1800's that is made from linen paper has been a base for many of my paintings and drawings. I love the way that ink takes to the vintage paper. In many of my drawings I try to incorporate the beautiful script as a part of the designs. The old and the worn has a special magic that has always called out to me. Framing the flowers of the month under glass along with other designs has brought a whole new product line to my business.
Tell us about your workspace, shop, or studio.I am very lucky to have a dedicated studio space in my home. I head into there, with my Chocolate Lab Rocky, every morning. After checking emails and doing any paperwork the rest of the day is spent creating. I do about ten craft fairs a year and there is a storage area for all that. My drawing table is near the window, a large work table in the middle of the room and another area for my sewing machine. (That's a whole other adventure of mine!) Rocky and I will go out for walks during the day to clear our heads and other reasons....
What inspires you?The little things that make up a complete life. A tea cup on a pretty table, a bird on a tree branch. A child playing in the park. I live in the beautiful Hudson River Valley and there is so much to inspire me here. The river view is ever changing and I never tire of that. I may find a pretty little flower on a walk or a broken book at an estate sale. I am inspired by my fellow artists, the talent around me is incredible from fiber, to mosaic, to jewelry, to pottery. At every fair I go to I meet so many wonderfully talented people to bounce ideas off of and to support each other in our endeavors. It is a scary and wonderful thing to share what we create in this life. As Lilla Rogers said, "I just like to make things!"
What makes your business stand out?Finding the whimsey in the everyday, my original art is the focus of all of my designs and the reason for my business. I take great pride in producing a product that not only will bring a smile to a face, but will be a joy to give.
What advice would you give an aspiring creative entrepreneur?Always have faith in yourself. Don't be frightened. Forge ahead and put yourself out there. Not everyone will "get" your work but those that do will make all the hard work worth it.
What does American Made mean to you?My husband has been buying American Made for years. No one in our family wanted to pick his name for gifting during the holidays because it was so difficult to find an American made present for him. Needless to say it has got much more difficult over the years to find anything for him. His selection of clothing and other items is limited and he has had to give in or do without. So for me, having someone like Martha Stewart put the focus on American Made is so very encouraging for all of us small business owners. To grow as a country and create jobs here, we must manufacture products. This will enable me and others like me, to invest back into our own communities.
Mark Your Calendar
NOMINATIONS ENDAug. 31, 2015
Final day for entering the Audience Choice Award competition.
VOTING ENDSOct. 19, 2015
Final day to cast your vote for your favorite makers.
WINNERS ANNOUNCEDOct. 23, 2015
2015 Editors' Award Winners and Audience Choice Winner announced.See past Award Winners
AMERICAN MADE SUMMITNov. 7, 2015
Don’t miss our networking event and maker lecture series in New York City. Tickets are available now.Discover the American Made Summit