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Posts Tagged ‘jewelry’

Lightning Round with Pegg (aka fiveforty)

February 19th, 2010

One of my warmest welcomes to etsy came from Pegg of fiveforty. Pegg handweaves recycled clothes and fabrics into gorgeous and lush rugs — I’ve vowed that I will own one someday and can’t wait to walk on it barefoot. [One of her wool sweater rag rugs just won gold over at the lovely rikrak’s handmade olympics (see Event 4)... woohoo, congrats!] Pegg also creates jewelry, felt cuffs, and regularly makes me drool with all her talk of baking and cooking.

1. How and when did you start weaving and jewelry-making?
I studied weaving at Sault college many moons ago. I worked in a weaving studio weaving professionally for a year, after college. I bought beads to make Christmas presents years ago and got hooked, it’s become an obsession!

Handwoven Recycled Sweater Mixed Fibre Rag Rug

2. How did you make the leap to selling your work online?
My daughter told me about Etsy, it took me a year to set up my shop so it was a slow leap.

3. Introvert or extrovert?

4. Tell us a little about your home, Terrace Bay.
Gorgeous tiny little town on the north shore of Lake Superior.

“…down at our local beach on Lake Superior

5. Have you made any new year’s resolutions for 2010?
I don’t do resolutions.

6. How did you learn to be such a good cook, and what’s your signature dish?
My grandmothers and my dad were all fabulous cooks, I inherited my passion of food from them all. I don’t think I have one signature dish, I have many, it’s always changing!

7. If you had the time, what’s something you’d work at improving or learning?
I am trying to figure out an easier way to finish my denim and corduroy rugs. Weaving the ends back in, is labour intensive and drives the cost of the rug up. I would love to make them more affordable.

8. Last summer, one of your rugs was featured in Style at Home Magazine… How did that come about?
I was contacted in the late winter last year, the assistant editor  “found me” on Etsy. They asked if I would be interested in having one of my rugs featured!!
Handwoven Felted Recycled Wool Sweater Rag Rug .. Ivory, Yellow and Taupe

9. What is your kryptonite?
Freshly baked crusty bread, hot out of the oven with a slathering of butter. Yum!

10. What was the first concert you ever went to?

11. You seem to be very close with your family. Can you tell us a little about them?
My husband and I live with my mom and our two dogs! We have  two  children, they live away. My daughter lives and works in London. My son just left yesterday to go to work treeplanting on the West Coast.

12. Happiest kid memory?
Playing outside with my friends!

13. What’s the last movie you saw in a theatre, and did you like it?
I haven’t been to a movie in years… sadly as I love movies. Terrace doesn’t have a theatre. We recently watched Temple Grandin on HBO, wow what a fabulous, very inspiring movie. I think it is a must see! Clare Danes did a fabulous job of acting. Google Temple Grandin and read about this amazing woman, or better yet watch the movie.

14. Dream job?
Dream job.. I am doing it, I just wish that it would pay better. I always wondered what I would do when I grow up, I haven’t grown up, but feel settled with my weaving and beading.

15. You love your dogs. What are their names?
We had 6 Canadian Inuit Dogs, sadly we now only have two. Kinoje and Cali Coco Bean! They’re fabulous dogs!

16. Chocolate or vanilla?

17. What do you like best and least about being your own boss?
I can come to work in my jammies. I don’t have someone to push me to work harder and in the right direction.

Lake Superior Beach Pebble Necklace.

18. What are you most proud of right now?
My rugs, they excite me, I love working with colour!

19. Ideal lazy Sunday?
All of my days are Sundays.

20. Finish this sentence: “I am…”
… silly, unorganized, afraid of the dark, overly sensitive and messy.

And I added a post-script 21st question because I totally forgot to include this in the original 20, but have always wanted to know…
21. Why “fiveforty”?
540 was the house number of the house I grew up in as a teenager, the house we live in now. Our town implemented 911 quite a few years ago and changed our house number, so it is purely sentimental. It will always be fiveforty in my heart, and it is where I do my work. It made sense at the moment when I wrote it as my business name on  my business license application. It is my legal business name.

Handwoven Felted Recycled Wool Sweater Rag Rug

Find out more about fiveforty on her:

Thanks for many smiles so far… and many more to come, five!

etsy.com, good peeps , , ,

Lightning Round with Melonie from Higashi Design

September 16th, 2009

Melonie and I will be at the Capital Clothing Show THIS WEEKEND at the Carleton University Fieldhouse.
We are sharing Booth #303. Drop by, say hello and enter our joint giveaway!
Friday the 18th from 5 – 9 / Saturday the 19th from 10 – 5 / Sunday the 20th from 10 – 4


The backstory
In general, I don’t wear jewelry. But last year, while vending
at a holiday show across the aisle from a certain Melonie Higashi, I couldn’t peel my eyes off a necklace she’d designed and that can be worn in over a dozen different ways (see Question #14). By the end of the weekend, I bought the necklace; for a girl who doesn’t do bling (never even had my ears pierced), this was a big deal. Since then, Melonie and I have become buddies — in fact, we are vending in a shared spot this weekend at the Capital Clothing Show. And so, isn’t it fitting that I introduce you now to my sweet and talented booth-mate?

1. You’ve done a lot of different things… can you list a sampling of what you’ve studied and/or done as jobs?
Hmmm… I have a Bachelor of Fine Arts from Concordia Uni. I also have a Bachelor of Industrial Design from Carleton Uni with a minor in business. I have worked retail, worked on flight simulators for major airlines, supported movie special effects software, worked as a marketing services rep, modelled and did commercials, taught piano, was a concert and wedding piano player, did web design, data entry, some construction work, worked at a publishing company, and was a trampoline coach… oh, and I must not forget my gig as a door-to-door sales person.

2. How did you land on jewelry-making as a full-time gig?
It found me. I bought a piece of jewelry at Heathrow airport and I received many compliments. It was an intricate piece and I wanted to figure out how to make it. So I went to a bead store found a few supplies and reproduced it. I gave those first pieces away as gifts. Then I started experimenting and exploring with different materials until the hobby grew into the business. After having previously worked in large companies, I decided to veer away from the corporate life and learn how to run my own business. It is definitely not an easy life but it is fulfilling.

3. Ideal lazy Sunday?
Sleeping in, cooking up a nice brunch, then going for a long run on the beach and watching the sunset.

4. Your Dad was a national Karate grand champion in the 60’s… how (if at all) did this influence or affect you?
In high school, I was known as the girl who had a ninja father who crawled on the ceilings (not true) and had samurai swords (unfortunately true)… so basically my social life was affected.

5. Early riser or night owl?
A night owl. So much so, I sometimes end up running into the early risers.

6. You’re a fellow Ottawan… what’s your favourite thing about living here?
The great people I have met.

7. Who would you thank if you won an Oscar?
I would thank the Academy for having a sense of humour.

8. Can you explain how you might come up with a new idea for a jewelry piece?
Colour and texture usually drive my jewelry ideas.

9. What is your kryptonite?
Pizza from Naples, Italy.

10. Dream job and dream location?
Travel photographer exploring the world.

11. You like to trampoline; why?
I love the sensation and I have been bouncing since I was young; plus, it is a great way to get exercise without feeling like you are exercising.

12. Got any party tricks?
It is quite possible but none of which I am aware.

13. How do you motivate yourself when you aren’t in the mood to work on jewelry?
Looming bills are a great motivator. Another good motivator is learning new techniques, which opens up new design possibilities.

14. What’s your best selling item?
The multifunctional leaf necklace is my best selling item.  It is sterling silver and can be worn in as many as 16 different ways including a bracelet.  The leaves are real leaves which have been dipped in sterling silver. It’s a great piece for travelling because it has so many different looks and is so versatile. [pictured below: two necklace options, and bracelet variation]

15. What was the first concert you ever went to?
Depeche Mode

16. What are you most proud of right now?
I designed a flash card system for blind and sighted children so that they could play and learn together. It was for an international design competition and somehow I managed to win.

17. If you had the time, what’s something you’d work at improving or learning?
Time management

18. Wallflower or first-to-the-dance-floor?
It depends entirely on the music.

19. What has been the most valuable lesson you’ve learned from being your own boss?
You can’t do everything on your own.

20. Finish this sentence: “I am…”

You can understand why I find Mel so fascinating; the fact that she makes jewelry I want to wear is just icing on the cake.

Ottawa-folk, if you want to come to the show, feel free to download this voucher to get $2 off admission (good for the whole weekend); just print out the JPG once it’s downloaded and present it at the door.

Keep your eyes peeled for Mel’s new-fangled sign:

That’s right — we actually both got organized enough to get vinyl signs done up, complete with grommets. Just one of many reasons I’m so stoked for a terrific weekend.

Hope to see you there!

good peeps , , , ,

Lightning Round with June Shin

July 30th, 2009

A few weeks ago, fellow etsian June Shin blogged about some new jewelry she had created, and this necklace (called “Sway”) caught my eye:

Sway Necklace in gold

I told her that if she ever made this piece in silver, she should let me know… Shortly after, she did just that, then we did a fun little swap, and I gave the silver Sway to my dear sis as a belated birthday gift (scroll down to see how it went over).

I also asked June how she’d feel about being next in the hotseat for one of my Lightning Rounds, and she kindly agreed. And so [sound of eggtimer ticking]…

1. What is it about jewelry-making specifically that drew you in?
Honestly, I’m not sure why I chose jewelry, but I wanted to take up a hobby to do outside of work. I figured making jewelry would be fun, so I signed up for classes and really enjoyed it. So it kind of just went from there.

2. Wallflower or first-to-the-dance-floor?
Hmm, I’m a Gemini, so a bit of both. I’m quiet around people I don’t know, but love to dance, so I will be one of the first on the floor, as long as the music is good.

Cascade of Discs - Silver

3. You’re from NYC, and are now in Atlanta. How’d that happen and how do they compare?
I moved for a boy. NYC definitely has a lot more energy and diversity, and I love all the options available to me there. Atlanta is smaller so a lot of times, I will run into people I know at random places, which is kind of nice. I’ve met a lot of small business owners here, and they’re all very helpful. I feel like it would’ve been harder for me to start a jewelry business in NYC.

4. Ideal lazy Sunday?
Laying out by the pool and reading a good fluff book.

5. You work part-time at a yarn store and you knit — any plans to sell knitted stuffs?
I doubt it. The turn around time for each item is just so long, that I don’t think it would be sustainable for me.

6. Who or what is your muse?
I get inspired by my materials: the charms and stones.

Falling Drops Earrings with Sterling Silver and Prehnite - one of a kind

7. You used to be a high-tech computer consultant… Would you ever go back?
Never say never. I would, depending on the job and the company.

8. Early riser or night owl?
I used to be a night owl, but have conformed to my husband’s schedule of rising early. But when I’m home alone, I go to bed late.

9. What is your kryptonite?
I think it has to be sugar.

10. You love shoes. If you could only own three pairs, which would they be and why?
Why would I only be allowed to own 3 pairs??? I think that would be hell and will pretend that this question was never asked.

11. What was the first concert you ever went to?
Erasure at Jones Beach, Long Island.

12. Chocolate or vanilla?

Omega Necklace - Peridot

13. What are you most proud of right now?
Being a business owner doing something creative. It’s something that I never thought I’d do.

14. Happiest kid memory?
One I can think of is the summer where my cousins and I would ride our bicycles all around town and to the mall. We would also find creative ways to entertain ourselves.

15. Who would you thank if you won an Oscar?
Mom, Dad, Husband, family, friends, and whoever gave me my shot at becoming an actor!

16. Congrats on your recent wedding! Can you give us a brief intro to your new hubby?
Thanks! Gene is a Korean guy who grew up in a small town in Tennessee. I didn’t even know there were Asians in Tennessee. Now, he is a business analyst by day and a cook/food blogger by night. He loves food and cooking, so I am a lucky gal.

Icarus Earrings - Gold

17. If you had the time, what’s something you’d work at improving or learning?
I’d like to improve my Korean and continue taking metalsmithing classes.

18. Most often visited website(s)?
Etsy, Facebook, Twitter, which is sad, because it’s mostly work-related.

19. What do you like best and least about being your own boss?
Not having a set schedule is both the best and the worst since I like being able to run errands and go shopping whenever I want, but also, I am a procrastinator and work better with deadlines.

20. Finish this sentence: “I am…”


Ah, my kinda girl! Really though, I find myself mesmerized by June’s shop — and this coming from a girl who doesn’t even wear jewelry or have pierced ears! Absolutely gorgeous stuff.

See and find out more about June and her stunning work via…

And as for how the birthday gift went over with my sis? It was a hit! Thanks to John for taking this shot:

Thanks for dropping by, and if you know of another great candidate for the hotseat, please suggest away!

etsy.com, good peeps , , , , ,

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