Spring! It's almost here. It feels like it where I live already. My garden is starting to sprout up and I just prepped my raised beds for zinnias and a mix of perennials for my cut flower garden. This collection was inspired by warm neutrals and hints of copper, leather and simple patterns. I could design a whole space just around that chair and the ceramic chime would look great hanging out in my garden. Are you ready for Spring?
Studio Tour :: Merry Mery
Location :: Santiago, Chile
Owner :: Maria Bradley
Where is your studio located?
My studio is located in the flat where I live with my husband, in beautiful Santiago, Chile. We moved here from Spain almost two years ago, and our neighborhood is both a quiet residential place during the weekends, and a busy business place during the work days. I'm so lucky to work in this studio with so much light, huge windows and a balcony with plants and flowers that brings a little glimpse of nature into my space even living in the middle of a big city.
How did you get started in your craft + what inspires you?
Well, I've really been working with my hands since I can remember. The first thing I've sewn was a pouch made with plaid wool from an old skirt when I was 10 or so, and I´ve never stopped sewing since then. Being a teenager I started sewing my clothes, and making gifts to family and friends for special ocations. But my crafts becomed a real business when I got married and moved to Seville. I began working with furniture restoration and recycling, until we moved to Madrid. We had no space to furniture there, and I decided I needed an online job just in case we moved again to another city. So, making bags again and opening my Etsy shop was a natural way to go on doing what I love the most: sewing and working with my hands.
And about what inspires me, well, I'm really inspired with so many things and inspiration may come at any time. I can be thinking on something else, and suddenly find a new bag or a way to improve the making process. I know I should have a little notebook always always with me, but life is life and sometimes I have it and sometimes I don´t :) New ideas come so often during a road trip, with my mind in the landscape. I don't know why, maybe because I´m not doing anything else than just looking to the beauty of nature.
What are the top 3 tools most important in your craft ?
It´s hard to choose just three tools, but I think they would be my industrial sewing machine, the rivet setters and the rotary cutter (with the cutting board).
What's a typical day like in the studio?
A day in the studio usually beggins checking mails and a bit of online work while I have a quick brekfast. Coffee is a must during the mornings, and there is always a pitcher of water on the table. I never watch the TV, and the studio is really a silent place except for the sewing machine that is quite noisy. Sometimes I listen podcasts, online radio from Spain that makes me laugh so much, or maybe some music (I really "need" to sing while music is playing). But that´s not so often as I´m really concentrated in my work and that can make me forget that music is a nice thing! Also, I try to work outside (in the balcony) when the weather and the tasks allow it.
What are the greatest rewards of creating something handmade?
Well, for me, creating something with my hands and liking the result is so really satisfying. I can see it as something "normal" because I can do it naturally, but I know these abilities are something to be thankful for. A happy customer is the best reward, for not talking of returning customers. My customers, together with my friends and family, remind me that creating good products with your own hands is not normal and is really a gift. That is so satisfying, and I'm so thankful for this.
We love instagram, do you? We are always looking for great artists to share with you and also to gather inspiration as well. All of us at elite16.com are artists, designers and creatives and it's fun to share what others are doing in the handmade world. We've been posting our favorite designers and shops with our hashtag campaign #e16handmadelife. If you have something to share with us just use our hashtag and we might feature you. Happy shopping and follow us at @elite16etsy.
It's the Friday before Christmas and I bet you probably have one if not two or more parties you will be attending over the next two weeks. Let's not forget New Year's Eve! With all these events I'm pretty sure you have probably pulled out your go to clutch that you use for more formal events. I know I have my favorite one that has a tortoise shell handle and a brass chain that I found last year. ( I love it.) That's why I thought it would be fun to do a style roundup with different types of clutches. So many choices and it doesn't hurt to have more than one in your closet.
So what's your style?
The temperature has finally dropped and it actually feels like Fall outside. For me it's always a close race, ( between Spring and Fall), for my favorite season, but I think the cooler weather and colorful leaves wins out most of the time. I also love shopping for leather accessories for the colder weather. It's way too hot the rest of the year to even consider leather clothing and I usually opt for a some type of canvas bag and wallet during the heat of the summer ( which is almost 5 months long here). That's all behind us now and I've been searching for that perfect leather bag. I really love this duffel bag from adeleshop, I definitely could use it as a great travel bag for many, many seasons. I also think this arrow necklace from i heart norwegian wood is the perfect complement to my go to fall sweater. I've handpicked some of my favorite leather pieces and hope you find some that you enjoy, too!
Feels Like Fall: Leather Finds
Just click on the images and it will take you to the associated Etsy Shop.
boots :: adi kilav
wallet :: judtlv
jacket :: iron charlie
keychain :: leonie saliba
bracelet :: dark ride
duffel bag :: adeleshop
necklace :: i heart norwegian wood
planter :: light and ladder
cord organizer :: sakao