Evil & Enchanted
1. What is the name of your shop or business and what do you sell?
My Jewelry Line is called Evil & Enchanted.
(but don't let the name fool you).
It came about because of my love for reading and movies. In life, and in books...you have good and bad...and you have to deal with both. What it does, is creates a story.
This is what my jewelry is meant to do.
Every piece I make has a background or is derived from a memory.
They are meant to inspire and enjoy.
I create based on something that means something to me....and people grasp that because it may also evoke a memory of their own. Just like a lovely song...the writer writes....and the listener interprets the melody by associating the words to circumstances of their own.
Most times this brings comfort and happiness.
This is what I set out to achieve with my jewelry line. Within my line, I also make steampunk jewelry, and items made from actual pages of books and of maps. I adore vintage, and these aged wonders find places in my creations daily.
2. Where are you located? or where do you sell?
I am proudly Canadian...but I have sold my pieces worldwide, for years.
Many pieces are posted for sale on my website, but I usually have over 40 show days a year where I travel all over Ontario. I am a regular at many of the largest shows, and I sell through Facebook as well. I have displays in local stores such as The Been Garden.
I am forever expanding, and being asked to be a part of special events....so you can always find my jewelry somewhere. I have also had the privilege of selling and creating for celebrities. My little world is expanding!
3. Do you have your own website/store or online link?
My website is www.evilandenchanted.com
There you will find articles, jewelry pieces, a newly started blog and more.
I also have a Facebook page: www.facebook.com/evilandenchanted
as well as Twitter and Instagram: https://www.instagram.com/evilandenchanted
4. How long have you been doing your craft/art and how did you get started?
My business started way back in 1995. I also own a craft supply company, and many parts for jewelry were always in the supplier catalogs. At first I created for myself...and when I was asked to make pieces for other people, I then started taking it seriously as a business. I have been in the fashion (modelling) industry for years, so it was all a natural progression.
5. Who or what inspires you to create?
Everything!!! Books inspire me. People inspire me. The state of the world inspires me.
Anything that sparks an important message causes my wheels to start turning.
Memories make me the happiest to base pieces on.
What I also love , is when a customer views my wares, and it grabs at a happy place in their own heart. That is when I know I have succeeded.
6. Do you listen to music when you work, and if so what kind?
I do, but only sometimes. There are days where I just want to be alone in a comforting environment free of all noise and chaos. That is when I am in my happy place.
Other days I will have my ipod on shuffle and enjoy a myriad of delightful tunes. My music taste is varied...so what I listen to can sometimes influence my creativity as well.
7. What do you like least/most about your craft?
I love an organized sort of chaos, as I am not the type of person who will sit around even for a moment. Because of this however, the thing I like least, is the amount of time I have to do it. I run a household, and all aspects of my two businesses. When "real life" time has been used up, I only have a certain amount left to create in. Such is the life of all business owners. Time management has been very helpful in this regard, but having more time to do it would be nice.
I LOVE people's reactions to my jewelry, and I love making custom items that make them joyful. Jewelry making, as in any artform is very therapeutic. It allows me to relax, to detoxify the events of the day, and to drift into a happy place. I help people relive their childhood memories, and build new ones. I love to bring a smile to someone's face...and that by far makes up for anything negative.
8. Describe your workspace?
My studio is vast and wonderful.
Some days it is tidy...but mostly a crazy fun array of parts and pieces that are ready to be assembled. I usually like everything neat...but I made a conscious decision that my studio was a place to leave things "as is" so that I can go directly back to it and work. (I am not a fan of the setup part. I just want to dive into something...and preparation, although completely necessary spoils it lol.)
I therefore have many projects in process as well as show displays set up everywhere.
When I am done for the day, I leave it all where it stands...shut the door to my little chaotic state...and it waits for me to come back when I am ready to conquer it again.
9. What is one of your best moments as a crafter/artist?
There are so many that have been "best"...but the most amazing for me was many years ago.
As a maker, I don't just sell, I give. I have been a philanthropist for as long as I can remember, and have been a huge part of fundraising for the literacy of children specifically. I would always have free patterns and products on my website for people to be a part of this wonderful process of giving. On the morning of the 911 attacks on the U.S., my heart broke a little, and I was devastated by the destruction that had occurred. Soon after, all I could think about was the children of the families that had lost parents and loved ones in the tragedy. My natural instinct, based on what I was doing already, was to create a craft to post for free in hope that it would entice others to make these pins and raise money for these families.
The craft was a safety pin pattern of the U.S. flag.
What happened next was crazy. I woke up the next day and my email was flooded. My site was in overload, and I did not know what was going on. Somehow, some way...somebody saw my post, spread the word and it got out to Martha Stewart. She did a tv show immediately on my craft, gave credit to me, and from there, the world picked up on my fundraiser. I still have magazine articles that people sent me of their success using my little idea. It raised millions of dollars. I was so thrilled also....to make 25,000 flag pins for the efforts. It is an experience I will never forget. It just goes to show the power of collaboration in a craft, and what a difference, we as artists can make from getting our ideas out there.
The most recent accomplishment that makes me proud, is that my Jewelry was just voted as winner for the London Reader's Choice Award in the Jewelry category.
10. What advice would you give to anyone thinking about starting their own craft business?
* Stay focused. Know your craft and don't compare it to others. If you know what you are doing, and you love it, your work will speak for itself.
* Don't spread yourself too thin with funds. Buy what you need...sell the items, then reinvest. It is too easy to want to buy an overload of supplies then not have an advertising budget.
* Be smart with buying supplies. Cost is very important...but quality is the most important. You are only as good as the parts you create with.
* Most importantly, don't be afraid to be different. Not everything is for everyone. It is better to step away from what you "think" is most popular, because people only buy what they have to choose from. I learned very early on, that there are loads of people out there...just waiting for "something different". Something that envelopes who THEY are, and like, and not what others tell them they should be akin to. Originality is a unique quality that belongs to all who are not afraid to step outside the lines. It is most rewarding when you realize there are others that are like minded, and this then makes you One Of A Kind!
* Collaborate. The power of business relationships is key.