Shop: Be Something New
My studio is in my home in North Tustin California, which is in Orange County. I live here with my wonderful husband, who I have been so happily married to since 1981 (I was a child bride). We live in a ranch style home where we have lived for the last 24 years. It’s about 15 minutes from the beach, an hour from the mountains, and 2 hours from the desert, and we try to take advantage of all the beautiful places around us as often as we can. I have lived in this area all my life and I love it here.
History and Inspiration:
I have always needed to create things with my hands, ever since childhood I have been this way. When I was planning my wedding I started working at a bridal store. We had a very popular headpiece that the company was discontinuing, and I told my boss that I could make that. That is how I got started. I made custom pieces for the stores brides for a few years, then started my own business. I ended up with a wholesale business selling to bridal stores all over the US, and went to New York’s bridal market every fall. It was great to work from home while I raised my two daughters. A few years back the headpiece market really changed and I found myself bored making the same things over and over. That is when I found Etsy. I could be much more creative here. I really started my shop with mostly everyday headbands and combs, but slowly the bridal pieces became the bulk of my business.
I get really inspired by vintage jewelry and laces. My husband and I love going to flea markets and antique stores looking for treasures, and my office is overflowing with old supplies and flowers that I bought new almost 30 years ago that are now vintage. I really love to create one of a kind piece with vintage touches, but also have many pieces I make over and over.
My best tool is my new much more organized office, where everything has its place; I can work so much more efficiently knowing where everything is! I also still use my Grandmothers old Elna sewing machine, It maybe old but works like a dream! I also use her Keen Kutter scissors, I don’t think they make a pair as good as these anymore.
Music or Silence:
I usually start my day working in silence, just me, my coffee, and my orders. But when I am designing something new, I love to but my music on. I listen to a wide variety of stuff. I like Indy rock and folk (Deb Talan and the Weepies) but I love stuff from the 80’s, Reggie music, classic rock etc… I also have a TV in my studio, so around 4 or 5 I put the news on and see what is happening outside of my little world.
Rewards of Creating Handmade Goods:
I love creating things from scratch or taking some vintage treasure and making it into something special for someone’s wedding day. I have been lucky enough to be my own boss and run my own business since my early 20’s I can not imagine working any other way. It can be stressful at times managing the work load, or never knowing exactly how much you will bring in each month, but the fact that I can make a living doing what I love makes me feel like the luckiest girl in the world.