Wednesday, September 23, 2009

Featured seller - DreamrKate

We are proud to have DreamrKate as our featured seller this week. Kate is from Modesto, CA and has been a member on Etsy since 2006 and started selling late last year.

What is your specialty and what drew you to it?
I don’t know that any one thing is my specialty. I do what I love and sometimes that’s sewing, sometimes painting, and at the moment it’s pottery or ceramics, whichever you like to call it. I first put my hands in clay when I took a class when I was pregnant with my now 26-year old son. I didn’t have access to work with clay again until maybe 6 or 7 years ago. I took ceramics classes at the local junior college, then another couple of independent study classes and just found myself drawn to having a lump of clay in my hand almost all the time, just fiddling with it until it morphed into something I really like. Sometimes I start with an idea but I found that even though I sit down to make something specific, it doesn’t always turn out that way. More often than not the piece morphes into something totally different. For instance, I really wanted to make a bird cookie jar, a nice big fat one – well it turned into a big fat round pot with a branch across the top full of birds. I decided that it was a really cool kind of “frog” – beautiful with flowers, and the branch serves to hold them up, but also looks lovely with nothing in it.

Pick one item you have created and provide link either from your shop. My funny ‘bird boxes’ are my newest fun thing.
What inspired the “birth” of this item?
Who knows? I love birds, and I love funky. And I really like random things put together. I’m a bit of a pack rat and I love containers to keep my little treasury of tiny paper clips, nails, screws, or bobby pins, you know, things that need to be corralled.

Does this item have any personal significance to you?
I love birds. I used to tell one of my sons that all the birds were his – yes, all of them. Of course he was three, but still what an awesome concept – to think that all the birds in the world are yours, even for just a little time.

What is your favorite part of the process of creating your item?
I usually wake up with an idea and can’t wait to start playing around with it. And it doesn’t matter whether it’s a clay thing, wood or when I’m in sewing mode, even my patches. I have the basic idea in my head and I just sort of go for it. I mean, there is no wrong way to create art, right? They start out a little bit crude, but as soon as they start looking “like” something, it’s fascinating to watch the personality come out.

Please briefly describe a workday in your “studio” and how you created this item. Hmmm… a typical work day…. I’m not sure that I’ve actually hit a “typical” work day yet. I probably start out like most everyone else, with coffee and go through the email, grab toast or something and pack things up that need to be shipped or get started with a lump of clay. It’s not a hard and fast process and when I get busier I’ll have to be more organized, but for now I’m just sort of still getting used to not punching a clock. I can seriously go the whole day lost in just trying to make an idea I had, for instance, I made a very small ceramic box and wanted a whole branch of birds going through the roof, so I did that, but it took forever and the birds had to be so small and so did the branch, and then I broke it a couple of times so I had to start over, but even though it was tedious, I liked the idea of it, and it’s a tiny treasure. I don’t really want to have things that people can just pump out, I’d like to know that someone put some real work into something that I want to buy or collect so I want to do the same thing. I can work well into the night too, if I’ve gotten distracted during the day by friends or something. It’s nice and quiet and if I’m wide awake, what’s better than doing something you love to do?

If this item is part of a special line that you do, has there been an evolution in your process? For example, if we were to compare the first one you made to this one, what differences would there be, if any?
As far as clay work goes, I started making bowls and some small dishes, some houses, and when I’m looking at other ceramicists I realize what I can do and what I can’t do. I’ve seen absolutely amazing work on Etsy. There are people who do bowls or vessels so very much better than I do, so I’ll leave that to them and just buy their work, but I like to do freeform kind of things, like my birds for instance, and I think they get better as I go. I certainly hope so anyway. What I really love is that with art, whether it’s clay, fabric, or wood, you can really play around with your ideas and just see what comes of it. I’ve got so many more things that are going to come to my shop!
Please visit DreamrKate and check out many more of her fantastic creations!

Thursday, September 3, 2009

Feature Friday 09/04/09

We know that all the chilly weather NC has had lately is due to hurricanes and tropical depressions, but this past week's weather been a nice change from the dog days of summer. Don't you love waking up to fall-like crispness in the air?
These items from some of our team members just make you want to rush head long into a leaf pile.

Speaking of head long, how about this cute bit of head gear sass? Perfect for those days when the fall-like crispness is in the air, but not quite cold enough for full on head coverage.
Crocheted Chenille Skullcap in Green Confetti.

LinkThe colors used in this pretty print evoke that fall feeling. Print of an original mixed media painting by Deborah Dee.

And while you are wearing your new sassy skullcap, why not make out your grocery list on this cute little post it note holder by PamperedPapier?

Sunday, August 30, 2009

Vote in our Monthly Team Challenge!

Welcome to our second monthly challenge project! ACE team members were invited to make sunshine themed project. The winner will be whoever gets the most votes!

Check out the projects and vote for your favorite using the POLL located in the right sidebar. Voting will close on Thursday September 3, 2009.

Here are the candidates:

Zip-adee-do-da Day - art print by DeborahDee

Fun Yellow Beaded Crocheted Necklace by MBSignatureDesigns

Scotty Dog Bank (plays Over The Rainbow) by McCoyToys

Summer Buttercup Guest Book by UberArt

Summer Sunflowers Drawstring Purse by Zellbell