The Handmade Feature today is an interview with the owner of Miss November Studio on Etsy, a seller of amazingly original sterling silver and copper jewellery:
Tell us a bit about yourself.
My name is Sandra, I’m 30 and I live in beautiful San Diego with my husband, our dog Ruby and our guinea pigs Madame Horseradish and Special Brownie.
How did you get started in your handmade business?
I previously had a jewelry line called Brassafrass where I made necklaces out of brass stampings. I sold them in my (now closed) vintage clothing store to make some dough while we were scraping by. Eventually I found that boring. When my store closed I took a silver-smithing class and before I lost my new skills I invested in a load of tools and supplies and started creating on my own. I was really fortunate to have a patient instructor who allowed me to work ahead of the class.
What first made you want to become an artist/craftsperson?
Ever since I was a kid I have been making things. My mom was my Girl Scout leader and a seamstress so naturally we always had tons of overflowing craft bins and fabric. My grandma taught me to sew when I was 12 and I made clothes for my Barbie dolls. That was the same year my mom bought me a beading kit for Christmas. I guess she figured I would stay out of trouble if I had a creative outlet. BOY WAS SHE WRONG!
Apart fom crafts, what do you like to do in your spare time?
Spare time…what’s that again? In my spare time I stare at my computer screen checking up on my shop. Otherwise I’m in my studio or working my regular 40 hour day job…in retail…*shudder*. (Actually, I like my job.)
How long have you been creating art/crafts and how long have you been selling online?
I’ve been creating things since I was little starting probably in Girl Scouts. I was never a stellar student, but I was a sponge when it came to doing arts and crafts. I finally started selling online just last January after building up a tiny inventory of handmade sterling and copper jewlery.
How many different places do you sell from?
Just one right now, but I have an Artfire shop in the works.
What handmade possession do you most cherish?
I would have to say my bedframe. My husband and I have been together since we were 16 and he made our bed in high school wood shop. We waited 8 years to finally sleep in it on our wedding day!
Do you collect anything?
I collect mid-century furniture and art, vintage hats and I have a fun mini succulent garden planted in various vintage pots I’ve thrifted. I’ll admit I’m a bit of a hoarder…
What is your favorite part of your handmade business?
I love that I’m actually making something people respond to. The most difficult thing is staying ahead of the curve, especially on Etsy where there seems to be a LOT of the same in the sterling silver category. I have to find a way to make my stuff stand out from the crowd.
What would your dream job be?
I would love to live on a ranch with llamas and my long haired babies running around me while I garden. Obviously I would be making fabulous jewelry in my home studio. My husband would drive us around the country in our ’54 Chevy truck towing a little airstream teardrop trailer snatching up antiques to sell online using the wifi at Starbucks. My dream job is very specific.
Any other handmade shops you’d like to recommend?