"Etsy Studio Visits"

"Etsy Studio Visits", "Inside Etsy Studio Visits", "Inside Etsy", "fashion accessories"

Studio Tour :: Seven White Rabbits

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1. Where is your studio located? Give us a sense of the town or city where you reside through a photograph.

My Studio is located in Playa Del Rey, California. Its a beach city in Los Angeles, just south of Venice Beach.  

Its a quiet beach town, but still close to everything Los Angeles has to offer. 

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2. How did you get started in your craft? What inspires you?

I've been making things for as long as I can remember. My grandma taught me to sew when I was 5, and I don't think I've stopped since. 

I graduated from college with a degree in fashion design, and in addition to my Etsy shops, I also work as a designer for a clothing company in Downtown Los Angeles. A lot of the fabric I use for

Seven White Rabbits

is salvaged from the leftover production fabric remnants of my day job. 

I look for inspiration everywhere- street style, fashion blogs, and museums. Sometimes I need to escape from fashion and look for inspiration at the beach or park with my boy.

My son is my unofficial mascot, and my inspiration for my baby and kids line (

www.sevenlittlerabbits.etsy.

com

).

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3. What are the top 3 tools that are most important in your craft?

My sewing machine, fabric and a good pair of scissors!

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4. Does music play a role in your creating or do you like to work in silence?

My father and brother are musicians, and music has always been a big part of my life. I often have music playing when I work, although there are times when all I want is silence, as I'm sure most mothers of young kids can appreciate.

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5. What are the greatest rewards of creating something that is handmade?

I love making things, to me there is something so satisfying about taking a pile of fabric and turning it into something. Especially when I can take something old or destined for the trash and make it into something new.

Chelsea ::

Seven White Rabbits

Instagram ::

@sevenwhiterabbits

Facebook ::

SevenWhiteRabbits

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Studio Tour :: Toodles Noodles

follow the arrow swing tags

Liora- designer + owner of

Toodles Noodles

This month our Inside Etsy Studio Tour takes us to New Zealand.

Liora of 

Toodles Noodles

 shares with us her workspace and what inspires her designs.

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Where is your studio located?

In May of 2007 I hopped on a plane from California to New Zealand - for what was supposed to be few months holiday. Six years later I am a happy resident and am extremely proud to call NZ my home. A little over a year ago my boyfriend and I moved from Wellington (the capital and foodie central) to Auckland (the big city with warmer temperature). I compare it to moving from San Francisco (a walkable waterfront city), to Los Angeles (a city full of little neighbourhoods and suburbs).

Auckland is a great town to live in and have seen my business really grow since the move. Being a bigger city, there are lots of opportunities to be had.

We recently decided to convert our rarely used dining area into my new office. It's fantastically full of light, extremely spacious and has a great view out to our balcony. I work on a new 27" iMac (my poor eyes were aging way too quickly) and have an insane amount of storage full of product. I also keep two canisters of ribbon on my desk - completely normal ;)

stay awesome tote bag

bah bah black sheep notepad

animals like to party gift wrap

hello friend tote bag

chevron cake toppers

How did you get started in your craft? What inspires you?

I graduated from American University in Washington, DC with a double degree in Graphic Design and Visual Communications (with an emphasis in photography). In the autumn of 2011, I suddenly found myself with a lot of time on my hands and was in search of a creative outlet. The brand started out with me creating simple gift cards and gift wrap. Since then the brand has grown exponentially. I am constantly inspired by my surroundings and the beautiful landscape that defines New Zealand.

workspace and iMac

rolls of gift wrap in the studio

totes and more

a view of the studio

Liora at her desk

What are the top 3 tools that are most important in your craft?

Three things that I couldn't go without for my craft (business) are:

my hands - I still create a lot of my products by hand, something I really love.

my mac - I live and breath InDesign.

and my iphone - crucial for a small business owner (top apps: pages, instagram (@tootsnoots), twitter (@tootsnoots), Etsy)

The Coromandel- North Island, North Island countryside

Auckland in summer- the pohutukawa flower,  The Crown range - South Island

view from her balcony at sunset-Auckland,  Milford Sounds- South Island

Waitakere Ranges- North Island

 Does music play a role in your creating or do you like to work in silence?

It depends what I am working on if I have music playing. If it's a big production session, music is usually blasting in the studio. But if I am working on something that requires a lot of concentration, I absolutely love silence.

new cray cray cards

What are the greatest rewards of creating something that is handmade?

The satisfaction of seeing high quality products and knowing "I made that"!is pretty awesome, especially with the amazing feedback I have received on my products from all over the world. I now get a lot of my products professionally produced here in New Zealand but that doesn't take any of the fun out. Not to mention when you see something you've created in the stores, or worn on the street by others - it's the best feeling ever!

Liora ||

Toodles Noodles 

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Studio Tour :: Creatiate

Sarah Kathryn, Washington D.C.

This month our Inside Etsy Studio Tour takes us to Northern Virginia.

Sarah Kathryn of

Creatiate

shares with us her workspace and what inspires her designs.

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Where is your studio located? 

My studio is in Northern Virginia, just west of Washington, DC. My husband, golden retriever pup Ollie and I moved to Virginia in October, and I am really enjoying getting inspired in DC- the memorials, monuments & museums have been a beautiful resource!

nature as inspiration, hand stamped gift tags,

art print

How did you get started in your craft? What inspires you?

My start with stamp making was somewhat spontaneous. Having never tried creating stamps before, I ordered an array of materials from an online source and just tried them all. I fell in love with the simplicity of carving as well as the openness to design anything I could imagine.

Since I have been working in

rubber stamps

for several years, I have also been working on a line of

hand-carved block prints

inspired by quotes from my favorite classic literature. The line has been a long time in the making & I am very excited to add it into the mix soon!

Since moving to Virginia, I have been thrilled with the array of art museums & historic sites in the city. There is always something to do, somewhere to explore, new things to learn- and the architecture really fascinates me. My town has the added benefit of also being very close to the mountains & the wide open country, so I love being able to pull inspiration from both industrial and rural landscapes.

workspace, design process, ollie, stamps in process

 What are the top 3 tools that are most important in your craft?

When I started out in stamp making, I was hand drawing, transferring, carving & packaging each of my designs. I was (and still am) in love with the hand carving process. But after a grim diagnosis from a hand doctor, I added a Hobby Laser to my studio, and it has become a very important tool for me. The laser engraves my hand drawn, carved & stamped designs. While I was reluctant at first to add it into my daily work, I am really thrilled at how the laser is able to catch the little nuances that make the stamps handmade. It has expanded my business incredibly by allowing me to to spend more time designing, and as a bonus it saved my hands from certain doom!

My other two most important tools are very simple - a Micron pen that I do almost all my drawings with, and a notebook where I record all my new inspirations, drawings & thoughts. Both of these items are in constant use throughout the day and keep my mind on my ultimate goal: create more

.

 Does music play a role in your creating or do you like to work in silence?

Music often plays a role in my creative process; while I draw I love listening to the Counting Crows or my favorite James Taylor radio station on Pandora radio. Other than drawing time, though, I have to work in complete silence or with a background movie that I have watched a zillion times before (think "Pride & Prejudice" or, more recently, the "Hunger Games"). Otherwise, I find that I spend too much brain power on singing along when I should be working!

What are the greatest rewards of creating something that is handmade?

For me, creating handmade has been an incredible process of getting to know myself & what I am really capable of, and I think that is something many other makers can relate to. Each day can be something entirely unique, without rules or restrictions, and this complete freedom is something most people don't get to experience very often. Best of all, I always love sharing the things that I make with others - spending time chatting with other makers & with customers is an awesome benefit of being in the handmade marketplace. 

Sarah Kathryn ||

Creatiate

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Studio Tour :: Studio Cloth and Ink

Helen - owner, maker, designer and curator of Cloth & Ink with Mr. Duffy

Each month we will be bringing you 'Inside Etsy'. That means you get to take a peek inside the studio's of amazing Etsy shops. They share with us their workspace and what inspires them. This month we are visiting

Helen of Cloth & Ink's studio

in Boulder, Colorado.

Mr. Duffy sleeping on the job, Helen at her desk, a sampling of her studio

Do you have a shop mascot?

Meet Mr Duffy, Cloth and Ink's customer service representative, always ready to help with a friendly wag of his tail! He could be CEO of this business with all the decision making he sits through, if only he wouldn't sleep on the job.

The Rocky Mountains, views of Boulder and Helen in Colorful Colorado

Where is your studio

located?

Hi and welcome to Cloth & Ink! When I signed up for a studio tour a few months back my location was a very different place to where you see today. In February, my family relocated from Texas to Boulder, Colorado.

I am so inspired by my new surroundings and all the creative people I’ve met in the short time I’ve been here. There is a really strong handmade movement here and great support for local designers and artists. Buying local is a huge motivation for folks and I’m excited to embrace this community. I just have to walk out my door to be inspired here, there is such a positive energy to the place and of course there’s the breathtaking views. Although I’ll always be an ocean girl at heart, these mountains have won me over already. As for my studio, I'm still growing into my new space but I love the light that streams in all day, it's a happy place to work.

inspriations: orchids, butterfly in Ecuador, deer, flowers

How did you get started in your craft? What inspires you?

I have a long history with textiles from my childhood home, through under-grad school, to working in fiber research and then garment manufacturing. Starting Cloth & Ink came from a lifelong love of design, a resistance to mass produced products and making the most of a change in circumstance. Working in the industry, I saw mass production first hand and found it stifled creativity. I left the industry with the thought that next time I would do it my way, designing for myself and focusing on small production. That time came a couple of years ago, after moving from the UK to the USA, a relocation meant leaving my job as a teacher and brought about the

beginning of Cloth & Ink. I began as a screen printer, designing and printing my own fabrics for home decor but it has evolved since then and moved beyond home decor to 

women’s accessories. I love to try out new things and see where I can go next.

more from nature: sea anemones, boardwalk in Washington State, beach pebbles in England

The inspiration for my prints comes from my adventures in the great outdoors and getting close to nature. I love to take photos and use these as a starting point for my prints which develop through sketching and watercolors. It can be as simple as a flower in the garden or as grand as a mountain range. An influence on my style of graphics definitely comes from my love of Scandinavian aesthetics, I’m always drawn to this design style so it has become prevalent in my own work.

Helen at her sewing machine, dabbling in watercolor

What are the top 3 tools that are most important in your craft?

Only three! Well, I’m not often seen without a tape measure around my neck these days, it’s the hottest fashion accessory in my house. I absolutely need a really good pair of scissors...and you better not get caught cutting paper with them. Lastly, I’d have to say my hands, they are what does the hard work after all.

works in progress

Does music play a role in your creating or do you like to work in silence?

I definitely prefer to work with some music in the air. I love listening to some folk/indie

melodies while I work, especially The Lumineers, a little Munford & Sons and a lot of Of Monsters and Men right now. Anything that gives me an excuse to have little dance around the studio really. I can see myself following some of the local folk and bluegrass bands here in Colorado, I’m amazed at the local talent. I also love to listen NPR and of course I stay in tune with the UK music listening to BBC Radio 1 online.

sample rack, Mr. Duffy at work

What are the greatest rewards of creating something that is handmade?

One of the greatest rewards for me is knowing the journey that a product has been on to become what it is. Knowing the entire history from design, to the materials and the construction and then being able to share this with others and see their enthusiasm for something I've made is such a buzz. I love to share what I do and encourage others to have a go.

Cloth & Ink Links:

Shop

Facebook

Twitter

Website

Look Book

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Studio Tour :: Mama Bleu Designs

I’m Laura. An artist, wife, mom and grandmother. I'm the face behind

Mama Bleu Designs

and I have an unquenchable thirst for creating with my hands. Creativity has always been a part of my life so it was only natural for me to turn it into a business.

I grew up in Sierra Madre, a small town in Southern California at the foothills of the San Gabriel mountains. It’s a place that I love so I never left. The community encourages art and it’s not uncommon to see the work of local artists hanging in the coffee shops, restaurants and city hall.

Our home is just a 10 minute stroll from the center of town and when we walk out from under the large oak trees that surround our house, we have a beautiful view of the mountains. My studio is a room that we added onto our home during an extensive remodel just after we purchased it over 25 years ago. Being a cabinet maker and third generation carpenter my husband generously outfitted my room with plenty of windows, workspace and storage. The morning sun pours into my studio space and creates an inviting place for me to start my day.

I love to learn new things so after I was initially introduced to handcrafting techniques like sewing, knitting and needle crafts as a child it was only natural for me to read and take classes to learn more about other ways to create. My path to a college art degree exposed me to painting, illustration, ceramics and graphic design. After getting married at a young age and being fortunate enough to be a stay-at-home mom I found ways to use what I learned and bring it into my life.

Watching the example of my parents and grandparents as they entrepreneured their way into successful businesses, I considered launching my own creative business from time to time. Without the encouragement that the handmade community offers today and the launching pad that etsy provides, my past efforts never really moved past the hobby level. Things changed for me about two and a half years ago when I made a stronger connection with my passion to create handmade goods and share them with others. That is when I decided to open my etsy shop.

Some of my fondest memories growing up are connected with sewing. I learned to sew from my mom and she learned to sew from her mother. As a teenager I would spend my weekends browsing through fabric stores or in front of my hand-me-down sewing machine. A couple of decades later and nothing much has changed!

I think I inherited the love of vintage, well-loved things from my mom. Pieces of furniture that have been passed from one family to another and wear their patina-stained colors well. One of my favorite things is the feel and look of faded handmade quilts. When I make piles of fabric yo-yos for my personalized clutches I draw inspiration from a collection of quilts that my mom and grandmother have passed on to me.

Something that I wish I had more time to do but still draw inspiration from is gardening. I love the colors, shapes and sounds of nature. The idea of Mama Bleu was actually born from times when birds would visit me while working in my vegetable garden.

My week is divided between working in my studio and caring for my grandchildren. The two days a week that Kyla (2) and Micah (4) spend with me are opportunities for me to encourage creativity and art play. Part of our time together is spent in my studio. They will paint or color or play with my fabrics will I sit at the sewing machine. Kyla is fascinated with my machine and loves to sit in my lap and watch the needle go up and down. I think she is a sewer in training!

Other than the weekend, I only have 2 full days in my studio each week. Those are my marathon days and I try to squeeze in as much as I can from mid morning to late night. Lots of coffee or tea and music play a big role in keeping me going on those long days.

Right after the new year in 2012 I had a bride ask me if I would take one of my stitched illustrations and put it on a clutch for her. This one thing changed the course of my business. Ever since then I’ve worked with dozen of brides and love how I can add something special to their wedding celebration!

One of the most rewarding parts of my business is hearing back from my customers about the way my handmade items have brought joy into someone’s day!

Laura ||

Mama Bleu Designs

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Studio Tour :: Orly Design

Today we're going behind the scenes to get to know Orly Pittel of Etsy shop

Orly Design

!

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Hi, I’m

Orly Pittel

—46 years old, happily married, a mother to 3 teenagers, a dog and a cat.  For the past 10 years we are living in a quiet village in the center of Israel.  Until 4 years ago, I worked as a lecturer of computers networking in a collage and in my free time I create with a variety of materials, something that started many years ago as a young girl.  I grew up in a very creative home, my parents owned a small factory for handmade knitting, I was always surrounded by creating and innovation

energy.  I guess this passion for art started back then.

Once I discovered ceramics I totally fell for it, it didn’t take long until I decided to leave the teaching job and focus on ceramics art.

On the day I officially quit my day job I set a milestone on my calendar, I took all the things we had in our garage (including the cars...) and converted it into my studio, as time passed by this has become the place I always dreamed about.

I literally live and breath this art all day & everyday, sometimes I dream about it at night... this is the result of working so close to home... and especially to your heart.

My working hours are way out of the nine to five format, some days last too late at night, on the other hand I get the chance to have lunch with my kids when they get back from school and also meet my friends for breakfast every once in a while, something that is easy to get used to...

Normally I sculpt during the morning time, everything is so quiet and you can hear the birds singing I have to admit that this is the most pleasant and relaxing music to work with. When the birds are not around I just listen to the radio (not talk shows, music!). Anyway, I have the 2 cutest colleagues that

keep me company.

I can summarize my inspiration in two words: Nature & Colours, that in most cases they blend with each other.

I like to take long walks, I try to catch the nature's shapes, textures, colors and sounds, even on a walk with the dog something can catch my eyes and I get back to the studio full with inspiration.  Almost every item I create is somehow related to nature, animals, birds (lots of birds!!!) butterflies, trees, leaves, flowers, acorns, oceans and lakes and more.  And the colours, I'm addicted to colours... there are colours combination with so much happiness and joy, visiting a flowers nursery or even the food market always fills me with new ideas.

When I’m not creating in the studio or struggling with leaving the computer :),  you’ll find me having fun in the kitchen... I really like to cook and bake - my kids are my “master chef” judges...

Creating ceramics is a long steps process, you can’t think of a new idea, create it and get immediate results... it simply doesn’t work.  The steps are much slower, you sculpt the new idea, wait for it to completely dry, first firing in the ceramic kiln, wait for the kiln to cool, glaze the item, second firing, and then wait again for the kiln to cool down.  This process can take sometimes up to 2-3 weeks, it depends on the size of the creation and the weather, on winter months, the drying process is longer.

I admit, waiting for the kiln to cool down is the hardest part in my work.  I’m a kind of person who likes to see immediate results and this indeed challenges me....

When I create in the studio, I use lots of tools I have purchased and collected during the years.  The most used tools I use are stamps which I make by myself or purchase.  I love to combine it in my creation. Each interesting texture I see becomes a new stamp to work with. I don’t think there is even one button or jewelry in my home that hasn’t become a stamp... Actually it’s a bit risky to be around me, if you pretty enough - i guess I’ll use you as a stamp as well :)

One more thing that I jealously keep is my grandmother and my mother’s laces which they knitted by themselves (and still do). The lace patterns combine beautifully in the clay and the option to stamp a design which was created in the family many years ago makes me happy.

If you already know my

Etsy shop

, you probably know that most items are for weddings. The reward when working with brides to be is awesome... I get excited again and again when a couple chooses my items for the most important day of their lives :) Knowing that when they cut the wedding cake at their big day, everybody looks at the cake topper (after the bride of-course...) that I designed and created by myself, and that wonderful couple which allows me to be a little part of their special day makes me feel great!

I want to take this opportunity to share with you that I’m so proud to be a part of this wonderful team. I need to say that a considerable part of my shop’s exposure is because of the team.  Actually, I met a very professional and talented woman in the team which helped me a lot with business and marketing planning for 2013. Because of her advice, my schedule, plans and goals are much more organized. Thank you so much

Meagan Visser

.  And... The team managers, Big Thanks... and as I already told, you have made this team a one big family!!

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