What do you make?
I make cute illustrated paper goods for my shop, Bubbly Shnooks, and am currently expanding my line to include crocheted goodies, soft dolls, and accessories. I also design a line of scrapbook paper for Sassafras Lass, as well as work in the local Vancouver animation industry as my ‘day job’, as well as making a lot of crafts just for fun: I love to scrapbook, embroider, sew, cross-stitch, and am currently addicted to crocheting!
What or who inspires you?
I’m really inspired by artists, crafters, and illustrators who have made their own little thriving indie businesses! Artists like Elsie Flannigan of Red Velvet Art, Susie Ghahremani of BoyGirlParty, and Emily Martin of The Black Apple, for example – those who make their own unique and adorable goodies and have remarkable branding & a smart sense for all things indie bizz. Chasing dreams really inspires me!
How did you get started?
I started scrapbooking when I was 12 at a beginner’s class with my mom, and everything’s kind of stemmed from there! (I’ve been sewing and drawing and journaling for as long as I can remember, too, of course). I got really into scrapbook products and goodies about 4-5 years back, and my love of drawing led me to doodle my own scrapbook paper tags, which then led to also making cards and art prints, and it’s grown out from there. The collage-inspired way I scrapbook has now also led me to designing lines of paper – where I use every crafty technique in my arsenal, from embroidery to dying paper to drawing to sewing. It all started with paper and has grown into a creative outlet that comes out in a wealth of forms!
What are your favourite materials to work with?
I love to work with heavy cardstock and walnut ink (a natural brown dye that ages paper in a lovely way). I’m also partial to my trusty HB pencil and plain old white paper for drawings, and Photoshop is vital for everything! Fabric is also a favorite – especially neutrals that I can dye and scrunch and make my own.
I’ve also always been really into the mix of aged vintage & bright colors, so thrift shops inspire me, as does the magazine aisle at a big book store. Scrapbook galleries, numerous crafty blogs, children’s book illustrations, and artists like Mary Blair, Dr. Suess, and Edward Gorey have my heart. Calgary’s own amazing ‘Uppercase Magazine’ is also an amazing resource! I find inspiration everywhere, really. The world around me inspires!
Do you have any advice for those in the biz?
I would say that the most important thing when you’re creating anything or opening a shop is to make what you want to make and stay true to yourself, not to make something because it’s popular right now or that it’s what everybody else is doing. It can be discouraging at first, sometimes, feeling like you’re a black sheep of sorts, but once you spread the word and find your niche, you’ll be glad you stuck with something unique that you love to do. You’ll find that other people will love that about it, to!
Do you consider yourself an artist or a crafter?
Oh, this is a toughie. I’ve bantered over it with art school folk a few times, because it’s such a blurred line, now. I would like to say I’m a ‘maker’ – lol – aka, a crafter & artist all rolled into one. I think today that craft & art have joined forces – crafts are just as beautiful and inspiring during this handmade movement as art, is, to me.