I hope you've enjoyed meeting the leaders of the team! Last, but certainly not least, I'd like to introduce you to team captain Rebecca of A Mother's Art and Olive Smiles. She's this week's feature shop, so keep reading to find out what inspires her and how she's dedicated to helping other small businesses succeed. Thanks for your hard work and dedication to our team, Rebecca! -Cori of Peace, Baby! Batiks.
Where are you located?
Princeton, New Jersey
Tell us a little about yourself.
I am, of course, a stay-at-home mom who loves using her free time creating art. My husband and I have been together for 10 years and have two beautiful children together. My husband's days are filled with being an aerospace engineer, and before retiring to became a mommy I was an assistant project manager in the real estate construction industry. Following my new love of art and photography, I've decided to go back to college to receive a degree in Fine Arts.
What type of merchandise will shoppers find in your shop?
Stopping by my shop, you will find muted, soft colors of whimsical, imaginative wall art for children. I pull together an assortment of mediums to create scenes that can help children dream their own stories. I find peace in bringing square pieces of paper to life. It's my "me" time.
How/why did you get started?
When I found out I was having a little girl, I pictured her room full of pink, colorful flowers, butterflies, and all things girly. The room accessories I found in stores where expensive and did not meet my vision. I decided to try and carry out my idea by creating my own wall art. I stopped by an art store, picked up a canvas and some other art supplies, headed home, dug up some vintage paper from old books that were falling apart and created my very first piece. "A New Beginning."
How long have you been crafting?
I have been crafting ever since I could hold a crayon. My mother and aunt were very creative and always had fun projects to do.
What inspires you to create?
When I see certain color combinations together, hear songs like "Pure Imagination," or see inspiration from other artist, that is what gets my creative juices flowing. Music definitely helps warm up my imagination. The past few weeks I've been listening to "Mary Had a Little Amp," a CD made up of many artists brought together by Madonna.
What is one thing you need to have with you while you craft?
When I craft I always need a blank piece of paper and some colored pencils to draw out my thoughts. I also need to have time, since my craft can take hours, sometimes days or weeks.
What is your favorite thing to browse Etsy for?
I can get lost browsing Etsy, usually for nothing in particular. Getting hooked always starts with the front page treasury. I click on a box and it just pulls me in landing on one artist's favorites after another. It's amazing all that can be found on Etsy; that's why I love creating themed treasuries. It's always fun and easy to fulfill since Etsy's artists sell everything under the golden sun.
When you're not crafting, what are you doing?
During my time when I'm not expressing my creative outlook on life, I am documenting it through photography. Photography has always been a love of mine, but not until I had children did my true passion emerge. My poor over-photographed children at times have to say "No cheese mommy"; that's when I know it's time to put a lid on it. One day my children will understand and thank me for all the beautiful photographs they will have to share with their families.
Where can we find you?
When I'm not documenting my family's every move or pulling colored paper together on canvas you will find me helping local handcrafting artists on www.OliveSmiles.com. I started a fun community of passionate artists looking to help other passionate artists build their brand. Olive Smiles is where artists come together to share skills and ideas from one another in order to push the handcrafting movement. Buy Local, Buy Handmade!
What is your favorite shop (not yours) on Etsy currently?
Browsing Etsy for years I have gained a whole new respect and love of the arts. It's amazing what people can create using their minds, their imaginations and their digits. Not only are their pieces amazing but their stories are as well, many hitting home which at times brings me to tears. I am so excited they found their passion and an outlet to share. One shop I feel is a favorite is Katie Daisy from "The Wheatfield." Mostly due to her energetic, youthful, feminine art and her story. I adore Katie's use of color, quotations and characters and how she wanders the country in search for inspirational stories to share on canvas. Take the time to fall in love and visit Katie at http://www.etsy.com/people/thewheatfield. You'll be glad you did!