Contributor post by Michelle of EviesToolEmporium
Tell us about yourself.
I am a Connecticut native living in the DC area and living with diabetes, fibromyalgia and celiac disease. Everything in my shop is handmade in the USA by me, I have no helpers, employees nor do I farm anything out to outside contractors.
My lifelong work in the silk and fresh floral industry as well as my 25 year career as a conservation picture framer and art gallery manager and over 40 years of working with different kinds of clays I think you can see reflected in my creations.
When did you open your business and what make you decide to do so?
After multiple injuries sidelined me from my former careers I figured it was a sign that it was time for me to share my own artwork with the world.
Tell us a bit about your products.
Everything in my shop has three different looks: daytime, black light and glow in the dark. I make wearable art and jewelry as well as miniatures and art for your walls.
What inspires your work?
A bit of whimsy, a bit of pragmatism, vintage carvings and items from nature along with beliefs that seem common to many cultures such as the use of talismans and amulets against the evil eye. I am an avid heirloom urban gardener and champion of the LGBT movement.
What are your future goals for the business this year? What is your dream for this business?
My dream is to own a little cottage shop with an attached greenhouse where I can display and sell my art as well as share my love of gardening.
What makes your business stand out from businesses that sell similar products?
My work is not like anything else most people have ever seen, probably because it is so time-consuming to produce and my interests and background in various arts is rather unusual.
Tell us a bit about your work space. Do you have a separate studio?
I work at home and shuffle things around between the garden, the workspace and the supper table.
What have you learned since opening your business that you wish you had known before hand?
I would have made more of a study of how to best use social media platforms to showcase my work.
Any advice for those thinking about selling on Etsy?
Try to be involved in teams and promote outside of Etsy as well. Have your pictures really showcase your work and make sure you can see the entire piece in your thumbnails.
When you’re not working, what do you like to do to unwind and have fun? Do you have any hobbies?
My urban garden setups are my year round indoor/outdoor babies and I am working very hard at using my fresh produce to keep my diabetes in check. Once in a blue moon I still get to make myself a dress or two and am always taking pictures of the wide variety of creatures outside my back door.
What is your favorite quote?
“Life is what happens while you are making other plans”
Where can people find out more about your business?
Feel free to email me anytime and ask me anything you please, I am an old lady who doesn’t mince words, age has given me the gumption to speak freely firstname.lastname@example.org
Just look for EyeGloArts on facebook, pinterest, twitter, instagram, tumbler, reblemouse, deviantart and Wanelo!
Is there anything else you’d like to share?
Always happy to share my heirloom seeds and any tips that might help others in their shops or gardens.
As my health conditions keep me mostly housebound I really do appreciate dealer inquires from those who wish to carry my works in their brick and mortar shops.
If you would like to be featured, please go to the CIJ Etsy Forum and fill out the questionnaire. Please note you must be a member of the CIJ Etsy team to be featured.