Monday, July 28, 2008

Figments by Kathleen

Shop Name: Figments by Kathleen
Shop Link:

Location: Indiana
Ships To: Everywhere

What inspires you? I don't think there is any one thing that inspires me. Often I will see or pick up an object and get an idea of what I could do with it. Some pieces just seem to make themselves, others take some prodding.

How long have you had your shop on Etsy? I started out on etsy with my first shop just about a year ago. Then in September I opened Figments by Kathleen and turned my other shop (Eclectic Miscellany) into a destash shop.

Is this a job for you or a hobby? I would say it is more of a calling than either a job or a hobby. To me a job is something you have to do to make a living but it isn't necessarily something you enjoy. I do not depend on my etsy income so I suppose it could be called a hobby. But I don't think hobby is really the appropriate word either. I feel the need to create things and hope that others love my creations as much as I do.

How did you get into your craft? I started out doing beadwork. I have done beading off and on since I was a child. About a year ago I was doing so much beading that I ended up having more jewelry than I could ever wear. At that time I read an article in our local paper about etsy and I was hooked. I was constantly exploring new styles and looks and came upon the Steam Punk style and was hooked.

Do you have any advice for fellow Etsy shop owners? If you love what you do it shows and others will see the beauty in your work. Don't get stressed out about slow sales right now. The economy sucks (to put it bluntly) and things are slow right now but there will always be a desire for art so just hang in there. Promote yourself locally and on the internet. You can't just sit back and expect people to find you if you don't put yourself out there.

What do you love about Steampunk? I love the aesthetic and the mixing of periods, styles, textures....

Anything else you would like to add? Not off the top of my head. Follow your muse and see what happens.

Monday, July 21, 2008

banbury cross by adicat

Name: adrienne everitt *no capital letters please, for i find the capital a esthetically unpleasant, and i am an improper noun*

Shop Name: banbury cross, art and oddities

Shop Link:

Location: Oakville, Ontario Canada ~ just west of Toronto

Ships To: Anywhere and then some!

What inspires you? Oooh tough question! i would say that my main sources of inspiration are fandom and the natural world. Fandom is the culture that is born out of the worlds of Science Fiction and Fantasy, comic books, movies, books, television shows... William Morris and the arts and crafts movement are also a really big deal for me, the idea of putting FORM before FUNCTION and reflecting the natural world... There is something so compelling about the idea of an artist's utopia, where people work together to create things of beauty, everything is made for the individual by the individual~ true artisan culture, which is why i think that i am so attracted to Etsy and to the Steam Team.

How long have you had your shop on Etsy? Not so long, since just before this past Christmas.

Is this a job for you or a hobby? Another tough question, frankly i have to do this, it is my job, in the sense that this and my work in Fandom and costuming, gives me an identity and a sense of purpose, outside of being a mum. i was diagnosed with a bi-polar disorder after much torment, following the birth of my second son. Having always know that i was different, and that things were harder for me emotionally, i got to a point where i had to seek help, eventually it came to a decision between my career in, at the time, retail, and my children, clearly my children needed me more. So that is where my attention is focused. Financially my art helps us have the extras that a double income family would have, as it is just me and the kids. But more importantly my art gives me an outlet and a sense of accomplishment. I speak freely of this because i believe to not talk about mental illness is to foster the stigma and prejudices that are so prominent in today's society. Historically speaking art and bi-polar disorder, also called manic depressive illness are intricately tied, i take comfort in that.

How did you get into your craft? i have always had a need to create and modify things, i do not remember a time where i was not involved in some form of art, there were formal lessons growing up, as well as more domestic and crafty pursuits, when i was younger i used to make miniature horse blankets, saddles, and bridles for my Breyer horses! Sewing and making jewelry became refined as i wanted more and more costumes!!!

Do you have any advice for fellow Etsy shop owners? Be yourself, be kind, and do not get discouraged, i have not had many sales on Etsy, but many people look, and have 'hearted' my shop, to me this is rewarding too, that my art is being appreciated, however, more sales would be nice too!

What do you love about Steampunk? Steampunk represents so much hope, and determination, Airships and submersibles, adventure and beauty. We are given a romanticized view of the world, a world that shines through rose tinted goggles. In literature, Steampunk often follows a theme of uncertainty and turmoil, yet there is comfort in the fact that the machines can be fixed by our own hands, that we can see the pieces working and know their place. In today's world we cannot touch the workings of our machines, most of us only have a simple grasp of how a computer works, or how our television works, Steampunk allows us a world where we can take control of our surroundings and get our hands dirty.

Anything else you would like to add? i would like to encourage people to think about how they shop, think about how your purchases affect the environment and the world, when you are shopping for a gift, or something new for your home, think about how the item was made, who made it, what type of legacy of waste is your purchase leaving behind? Buying handmade, is good for the economy, its good for the environment, especially as many people are finding new ways to use things, diverting them from the landfills~ You have power when you buy, you can chose to buy handmade items, helping individuals and the economy at the same time. You can choose to buy fair trade items, that help developing countries build schools and medicines. You can choose to buy things that use less packaging. There is so much power in how you choose to spend your money. You can make a difference.

Monday, July 14, 2008


Name: Sarah Dungan
Shop Name: Industrial Fairytale
Shop Link:
Location: San Francisco, CA
Ships To: Where so ever you dwell.

What inspires you?

The world around me. I believe all imagination is born from your observation of reality, and as a child I was told, and made up myself, many fantastic stories about the forest where I lived. I've been lucky enough to have been able to travel a lot through out my life, and I would encourage anyone who can to travel with their children. Even places I don't remember that clearly I remember in terms of fantasy and imagination. Everything you see as a small child seems a larger then life, and has the potential to be a fantastic magical place and an adventure into the unknown. I try my hardest to put that sense of wonder into everything I do and to hold onto it as an adult.
Of course I have some favorites. I love the rocky windswept coast of Northern CA, and spend as much time on CA 1 north of San Francisco as possible. I enjoy the art and art history of the middle east and northern Africa a great deal. And the grand scale and ruggedness of the American west still inspires a sort of awe whenever I get the chance to experience it. And its certainly worth pointing out that I love reading other peoples imaginations at work, and seeing how other artists see the world, what they choose to point out and dwell on, and what interests them. Urban/Dark Fantasy, steampunk, and western stories are some of my favorites, and as an animator I always enjoy a good film - animated or not.

How long have you had your shop on Etsy?

Only a few months, its a very new adventure for me. We'll see how far I can take it. I love new adventures!

Is this a job for you or a hobby?

Its so hard to separate, but because it doesn't yet bring in a level of income that could justify taking 'work' time for it, I would say its either a start up business or a hobby. I would like for it to someday be a real part of my job.

How did you get into your craft?

I've been a professional animator and designer since I graduated college, and I was sculpting and drawing and sewing and all sorts of things all through growing up. But as to the jewelry making, I actually haven't got the slightest idea. I did some metal-smithing and jewelry design in school, but I suppose it really started because I had wooden disk beads for a very long time and wanted to do something interesting with them. And then, someone at the studio I worked for at the time did a little lunch time tutorial on making wire loops for beading and I just knew what to do with them. I started on Etsy mostly because I was starting to run out of friends to give jewelry too!

Do you have any advice for fellow Etsy shop owners?

Look around your community and make some friends, people are the most valuable thing you can get out of most any experience like Etsy.

What do you love about Steampunk?

The imagination and innovation behind it. I see people building steam powered cars for no reason other then they would like to see if they can, and refitting computers with brass typewriter keyboards and just the fact that someone is doing it makes me happy. To often as a society we are encouraged to purchase, conform, and think inside a box of what is acceptable; the best kind of punk steps away from all of that and encourages people to create and invent and find their own path. Steampunk reminds the world of a time when we didn't feel like everything had already been discovered and invented, and encourages us to remember that everything HASN'T been discovered and invented quite yet.

Anything else you would like to add?

I feel like I'm only just starting out, and I'm exciting to see where it all goes from here.

Monday, July 7, 2008


Name: Alexandra Sforza

Shop Name: Heterodyne Designs

Shop Link:
Location: United States

Ships To: Worldwide upon request.

What inspires you? I draw a lot of inspiration from fiction. Ever since I was young, I've always been driven by backstory, finding out more about characters, and always found the items they might have in a story to be fascinating. I wanted to be able to create magical items like that, with a story all their own!
How long have you had your shop on Etsy? Only two months now, though I've done shows and sold wholesale for years.

Is this a job for you or a hobby? A little of both, but mostly a hobby.
How did you get into your craft? Honestly? It was to be able to reproduce things from fiction that no one ever sold! I can remember, when I was 10, making myself "Zelda" pendants, because I wanted to have them!

Do you have any advice for fellow Etsy shop owners? Stay original. Even if someone has an idea that selling well, this should be about the art, not about the money.

What do you love about Steampunk? The fact that it encompasses so many genres without limitation. I also think keys and clock parts are beautiful, and steampunk is a way for them to be seen and admired!

Anything else you would like to add? Long live the Wulfenbach Empire! (Thanks for interviewing me! Yay steamteam!)