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Thursday, December 18, 2008

FIRST INTERVIEW with Jennifer from 'MineFULL"

MineFULL - Mindfully made handcrafted items

Tell me a little bit about your background in arts and crafts:

Like most artists and crafters I can't remember a time when I wasn't making something. My Mom is a great sewer and would sew me clothes (I liked having things that were different than everyone else!). When I was a little kid I had a sewing machine that sewed with glue. I would make stuff for my dolls with it. Then, when I was a teenager I started sewing some of my own clothes as well as some things for friends too. I graduated from the University of Wisconsin-Oshkosh with a Bachelor's degree in Fine Arts. My emphasis in college was fiber arts. My fifteen minutes of fiber art fame: When I was in college I submitted a piece I did to the "Fiberarts Design Book 5" and my piece was printed in the book, which to me was huge because in college I would pour over and drool at the previous "Fiberarts Design Books".

When did you first start creating things?:

Hmmm, all my life I guess. But as far as selling the things I make that would be about 2 years ago.

Have you always made bags and hats or did you start out making other things?:

When I first started selling my creations I was primarily making bags, wristlets and purses, although I get bored making the same things over and over so I started making glass marble magnets and pendants as well. Through the magic of the internet I met a woman in Australia, Sue McArthur of . Sue studied millinery and writes her own hat patterns. Sue graciously shared some of her hat patterns with me and we developed a business to business relationship. Sue sells patterns in her shop and I sell hats made from her patterns, and we refer people to each others shops. So now I've added hats to my shop as well.

Is this your only business or do you do other things as well?:

Other than running MineFull I also help my Step-Dad, Ken, run his etsy shop (which features hand turned wood pieces): . I'm a work-at-home Mom and have two daughter's; Serene, age 7 and Esme, age 4.

Do you still dream about making other things? If so what?:

Where to begin? I'm always coming across something that inspires me. In the last couple of years I've taught myself to knit and crochet. I'm working on honing those skills, but for now I just make things for my kids, family and friends. When I was in college I had a couple of pottery classes that I loved. Someday it would be fun to get back into a pottery studio. I do upholstery as well, someday I would like to design and possibly weave my own upholstery fabric and upholster furniture pieces that my husband makes.

How did you hear about Etsy?:

I found it by accident! I was selling purses I made on ebay and to friends and acquaintances, there was a particular fabric that was popular and I was doing an online search on that fabric to buy some more. An etsy seller had that fabric name in a title for one of her listings and it came up in a google search. I remember opening up that page and thinking "Wow, what is this?". I was hooked! At first I opened an account and just bought a few things, then I opened MineFull and started selling.

Any words of advice to others?:

I always tell new sellers to spread out their listings. Bunching up all your listings at one time just gets all those listings buried together. But if you list randomly throughout the day or week you'll be able to touch more viewers. Try your best to take great pictures. And of course, treat buyers how you like to be treated when you're buying. I try to be as friendly and quick to respond as I can.

At the recent etsy streetTeam Wist craft sale, I got one of mineFULL's hat. I wore to a party this past Monday and recieved many, many compliments. MineFULL uses great craftsmenship with her work and you are sure to love whatever you get from her. I hope you check out her shop!


McArt said...

Great interview!

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