Saturday, February 14, 2009
Today is Valentines day and if you haven't gotten your love a gift, it may not be too late. Surprise them with a belated gift from one of these wonderful shops.
SweetMelodies has a variety of beautiful vintage inspired jewelry. Here is a little about Melissa the designer behind SweetMelodies:
How long have you been crafting?
I have been crafting since I was old enough to hold a crayon in my hand! My mother was an oil and china painter, and she sewed many of my clothes when I was little. She was a constant inspiration for creativity. When I was very young, she also taught me to sew, and my friends all thought I had the best dressed Barbies in the neighborhood. My grandmother inspired me, too. She always had the COOLEST craft supplies that my sister and I could create with anytime we visited her! (Remember those pieces of lime, yellow, bright orange, etc. fake fur you could make into fun critters with a little glue and some googly eyes??? ...I know I am dating myself, but oh, what fun it was to let our imaginations take us anywhere they wished!)
What inspires your art?
The thing that most inspires my art now is the sheer joy of creating it. Making things with my very own hands is such a wonderful escape for me. ...I LOVE the rose bushes in my yard. Flowers and all things timeless and vintage are also inspirations for me.
What are your favorite methods / materials to use in your artwork?
I love to create jewelry! I enjoy repurposing long lost treasures into fun, new jewelry. I cannot get my hands on enough glass flowers and beads, and I am shameless about collecting vintage jewelry and "things" that could someday be turned into new goodies to wear! I also have a fun time creating collages. Old ephemera and photos seem to be nearly as addictive for me as collecting wonderful old "junk," ...ummm, treasures, that is!
What sets you apart from other artist?
The look of my creations tend to be on the "soft" side. They are usually more sweet and dainty, and they always have a vintage appeal about them. I am creative minded, but also business minded. Superior customer service is very important to me. I try to never lose sight of the fact that without my customers (no matter how large or small a sale), I would have no business, and I really enjoy giving my customers the special attention they deserve. It is fun to juggle my online Etsy shops, SweetMelodies.etsy.com and CreativeElements.etsy.com , with being a stay at home mommy and wife. I work at home during the day, keeping regular "shop hours," and enjoy my babies as soon as I pick them up from school in the afternoons. I love the flexibility I have to be able to set my own schedule. I feel blessed to be able to do the things I love most and still contribute to my family's income a little, too.
shop/ site link:
Please visit me at: www.SweetMelodies.etsy.com .
How about some jewelry from JDS Gems. Here is a little about Sharron and Dennis.
How long have you been crafting:
I would say a looonng time, although I'm not telling exactly how long. When I was about 8, I remember my mom introducing me to embroidery. As a 20-something I discovered counted cross stitch and loved that even tho I didn't consider myself super creative I could produce wonderfully beautiful pieces just by following directions (I was good at that--LOL). My hubby and I are now empty nesters and discovered the wonderful world of rocks about a year ago.
What inspires you: Hubby and I design our pieces together. He is actually the more creative one (see above), and once you get to know us you can figure out his vs hers. I find that the rocks are inspiring in themselves. Mother nature does a pretty awesome job and there's nothing like looking at all the colors in the stones and "listening" to them as you put a piece together.
Favorite materials: Rocks of course-LOL!! Seriously, we use lots of stones in our designs and wanted to share the love and keep them affordable. To that end, we normally don't use lots of sterling silver, but should a customer want it, we can supply it.
What sets us apart: A couple of things. First, I try very hard to find really unusual stones that you don't often see other designers/makers use. Second, we don't ever consider any of our pieces a finished product until our buyers are happy with them. We do a lot of craft shows and spend just as much time resizing, creating and re-creating pieces as we do selling completed ones. Oh, and I almost forgot!! We use magnetic clasps. We've shopped around to find really strong ones and they're great, especially on bracelets. I get dressed all by myself--LOL!! We do also carry traditional ones and can substitute them out.
Or buy your love a beautiful scarf from KnitzAndFeltz. Here is a little about KnitzAndFeltz:
How long have you been crafting?
I have been knitting longer than many of you readers have been around! I put it down for many, many years (although I never forgot about it) and took up crafts that were age appropriate for my kids – coloring, painting, creating holiday items, stamping, scrapbooking – you get the picture! Then one day I realized my girls were all grown up with their own lives to live, no more sports, no more school activities, no more crafting time on a regular basis just us girls. And, I picked up my old friends again... my knitting needles!
What inspires your art?
Life. Where I live the winters are cold and long. I believe that just because you need to be bundled up it doesn't mean you can't look good and feel great! Same with my bags. Whether it is used for every day or for a special occasion, why not carry something that is functional AND fun? Thus my motto for my shop - Warm...Comfy...Trendy...Fun...
What are your favorite methods/materials to use in your artwork?
Various yarns & fibers. For my winter scarves & hats I mainly use wool and wool blends. For my bags I use 100% wool with some "fun" fibers mixed in for texture and adventure. I'm working on a spring scarf collection which will be lighter weight using a luscious bamboo yarn. I'm also toying with the idea of adding a spa collection... but now I'm getting ahead of myself!
What sets you apart from other artists?
As a fiber artist it is pretty hard to set myself completely apart from other artists. My passion for knitting perhaps? My pride in my work? Basically, I LOVE TO KNIT! I love the feel of the yarn in my hands. I love using pattern, texture & design to make unique items that feel good and look great. I love watching my ideas become an item that is beautiful, useful, comfy, trendy… FUN!