Tuesday, July 13, 2010

Feature Artist - Michelle

~Happy Tuesday all,
~This week I have a fabulous jewellery artist for you, Miss Michelle rocks jewellery design, and scrapbooking pages too!!!!! Is there anything she can't do???? Anyway here she is:

Bios are so bizarre, how can I seriously explain all that I am in one little statement...but i will try to give you an idea of who I am and what my style is about while being as to the point as I can. I'm a small town girl from South Louisiana and still live in my sleepy little home town just south of Baton Rouge. I love the rich heritage and culture that surrounds me and I take joy in documenting it all. Married since 2002 to the sweetest (and most patient) man to walk the face of this earth. We welcomed our sweet little boy Zane into the world in September of 2006 and our lives have been forever changed.

I've had an addiction to scrapbooking from a very young age...back when peal and stick photo albums & scotch tape were acceptable. I see this wonderful hobby as an art form and I enjoy infusing my funky, edgy, gritty and sometimes graphic style into every page that I do. I love all things vintage, I love to distress things and don't feel a page is complete with out inking it up a bit. Hopefully I can inspire you to think outside your box and get a little gritty!*

But my heart belongs to my number one hobby, jewelry design. I've been making jewelry since I was 13 years old. My parents took me to a craft show at Destrahan Plantation here in Louisiana where I saw a pair of earrings made out of wire wrapped marbles. I insisted on getting them so I could go home and try to make them. And I've been making jewelry ever since! I love the feeling I get when I see someone wearing something I made. It's amazing to me that someone wants to pay their hard earned money for something I created with my two hands. I never get tired of it.

Who is your biggest inspiration???
Well that's hard because I literally find inspiration everywhere. My inspiration is more of a what than a who...my top places to find inspirations are advertising, photography composition, fashion and lately I've been inspired by organizational items. Wierd I know.
Why did you start creating?
I don't really know. I've always created. Like ALWAYS. My mom still has craft projects I made as a small child, like spoon people and little cross stitched letters that I framed and gave as gifts when she taught me how to do the "x" stitch. I even scrapbooked a ton when I was a child. Mainly on those old peal and stick picture albums but I did scrapbook! When I was 13 I started making jewelry because I wanted these pretty things I would see and we didn't really have the money to buy them. So I guess a lot of my creating came from filling a need for something I wanted and was too cheap to purchase! LOL!
What is your favorite thing to create?
It changes from month to month. Right now I'm on a jewelry kick and that's all I wanna spend my time making. When I do sit down to scrapbook it's been projects like organization items. Now next month, it may be totally different!

What are your favorite manufacturers?
Hambly hands down. I also love Dove of the East, Studio Calico and old favorites like Basic Grey, American Crafts and Sassafrass Lass.

You own an Etsy Shop, Thrifted Finds - what inspired you to start this up?
My parents have been antique dealers since before I was even a thought in their mind. I joke that I grew up as a gypsy since I was constantly being hawled to antique stores, junk shops, flea markets and craft shows. But then my creative bug bit when I was 13 and I started making jewelry and doing craft shows. I did that for over 15 years and then my son was born. Craft shows were not really a doable thing anymore and I needed an outlet to sell my items. That's when my Etsy shop was born.

Your shop is very successful, is there any tips you would like to share with my readers on how to have a successful Etsy shop?
Just market yourself in everything you do. Start a blog and blog about it. Create a facebook page and link to it. When you sell something, include a personal note and a card. Offer discounts and do promotions. If you make something wearable, wear it as much as possible because it looks better on you than in a picture. And make sure to keep things priced reasonably.

Do you create with music? If so what is your favourite creative song?
Sometimes but usually not. When I do get in a creative zone with music playing it's usually the Lilly Allen Pandora station or something like that.

What are your 3 must-have creative items?
Mist...for SURE mist, a black ink pad for distressing and really good cutter bee scissors for cutting out small details on patterend paper. Those are staple items for me! I use them on everything!

Have you ever created anything you've hated?
Sure I have. I usually just pull it apart and then come up with something wonderful. Some of my best creations started off with something I hated! LOL!

And the lovely Michelle has offered up a prize for us this week, here are the details: "Bras de lustre" Necklace The name translates to "chandelier arm" but the necklace translates to drama! Made from a very unique vintage glass chandelier arm. On a delicate antique gold/bronze adjustable chain. ($25 Value)
~To be in with a chance at winning make sure to leave some love for Michelle, I'll draw a winner next Monday.
~love, Vicki xxx
*Apologies for the change of font, the stupid blogger was being weird!!!


Maggi said...

Wow, what talent! Very cool interview!

Angie said...

That really is an amazing neclace. I really enjoyed the Bio and the interview answers .....what an inspiring and talented lady.

Michelle Sanders said...

*blush* Thanks ladies!!

Beth said...

and I DEF want to be in the drawing for that necklace! how funky, cool, unique is that?!
and EEEEE! that is my behind (along with M's) in the Bourbon sTreet layout! lol
I had such a blast visiting with M on her stomping grounds.
awesome interview, Vicki!

Mallory said...

Obviously I LOVE the jewelry!!! I liked reading the bio that was cool except you forgot to mention the turtles!!! I love them just as much as I love the jewelry!!

jillofallcrafttrades said...

ummm,i LOVE her bird tattoo!hehe

jillofallcrafttrades said...

ummm,i LOVE her bird tattoo!hehe

Dawn said...

Lovey neclace and love the tips about an esty shop (thinking about it at the moment) lovely interview

Love Dawn xx

Nancy said...

Another fab featured spot.....love all her piece including the cute bee necklace.