Artlife

Um, are you maximizing your flair?  (Office Space--must-see movie and must-have soundtrack!)  If you happen to need a few additional pieces of flair, then might I recommend Artlife?  In her shop, you can find super cute pin-back buttons/fridge magnets.  Even if you don't sport multiple pieces, everyone could use a good wearable conversation starter.  This might be the button for that single barfly in your life.

Whiskey does a lot more than make me frisky, so I had to give it up! What is your favorite drink?

I do still drink whiskey on occasion, but my favorite drink these days is a big tall glass of lemonade!! Oh and I do love a cold beer after a hard days work!

Your "Letters from the Future" idea is so intriguing! There are a lot of things up in the air right now in my own life, and I am definitely excited about writing myself a letter. I have a 9-year-old son and a 4-year-old daughter, and I have kept a journal since my son was born to give to him later in life. I look back at the things I’ve written and laugh. One post said, "Gas is $1.55 a gallon! How ridiculous!" lol. It’s been over a year since you wrote your own letter in January 2010. I have to know how it all ended up.

When I wrote my letter I was concentrating more on note cards and notebooks and some fridge magnets in my shop. So I would say the biggest surprise to come from "the year that really happened" was that I switched my focus to pin-back buttons and fridge magnets only. I really geared up for a busy Christmas season 2010 and it did not disappoint. Xmas 2010 was my best Christmas rush ever on Etsy and it was almost too much to keep up with all of the orders! I'd say the best part of doing the letter to the future exercise is to stretch your imagination—think big and write down things that you might not expect from yourself. The worst that can happen is that you will not do the thing you wrote down and the best is that you will and the dream you wrote down does in fact come true! I might also suggest doing this on a monthly basis so that you can better track your goals and progress. It really is an exercise to get those goals down on paper and to start thinking about just how you plan on enacting those goals. The big thing I learned from this past year is if you get "a bee in your bonnet" so to speak – don't be afraid to run with the new idea or goal. I switched my whole Etsy shop around to focus on the pin-back buttons and fridge magnets and in 3 months time got as many sales on Etsy as I had in the prior 4 years!!


On your blog, I noticed that you posted quite a bit in 2007 and 2009, but the other years are kind of hit and miss. Are you going to try to rebuild your blog or do you feel that facebook/twitter are better means for you at this point?

Like a lot of blogs, the attention I pay to it has been hit and miss over the years. It is something that I've been meaning to spend more time with but other priorities have taken precedent. I can't say which has been better for my business but I like having the variety of twitter/facebook/blogging even though sometimes depending what is going on in my life and business I do tend to ignore them at times.

You have your Bachelor of Fine Arts in Painting and Printmaking from Virginia Commonwealth University in Richmond. Are you using it outside of your Etsy business?

I would say that the BFA I got at VCU (now famous for sending our little known basketball team to the Final Four this year!!) is always informing my art and my art business. Even though I'm not painting anymore, it seems the years I spent in art school helped me hone my eye and graphic/spacial/image making abilities and my art business will always be geared around the image and using graphical language to communicate. Pin-back buttons seem like the perfect, small, inexpensive, art based way to communicate visually right now for me!!

You can purchase the items in her store pre-packaged for a gift exchange or in just good ol' bubble-wrap for yourself.  When the single barfly in your life is ready to start on a new journey, don't worry, there's a follow-up button for just those situations! 

Of course, these are just a few of her creations.  There are lots of others that are just as cute!  I also love the "Don't mind me.  I'm just making mountains out of molehills."  Go find your favorite at any of the locations below.

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