Interview with a Seller: Alison Heikkila
It's been a while since I have had the chance to post an Interview, so I decided to ask my friend Alison a few questions because her work has always inspired me very much - and not to mention her blue hair!! Check out her blog and see what I mean. Here are her answers.
1. What’s your name and shop name and what do you do?
My name is Alison Heikkila and my Etsy Shop is SkyPrincess
2. Where are you located?
I'm from Long Island, NY
3. What’s the favorite part of your craft?
My favorite part??? I don't know if I have a favorite...I enjoy the entire process so much. But, I guss if I had to choose, it would be the completion of a project that I am really happy with. That deep breath that you take when you look at something, and say, "Ahhh, it's done." And then if you are really lucky, you say "And I really like it!"
4. How long have you been crafting?
I've been crafting since I came out of the womb! Seriously, from a very young age. My Mom is a huge crafter, so she of course always had fun things for me to use around the house to make little projects.
5. What’s your favorite thing to make?
This is another tough question! I went to college for a silversmithing degree, as jewelry has always been a deeply rooted passion of mine. But, scrapbooking has really come up to bat with making jewelry. So, those two things would be my favorites, although sadly, I don't get to do either of them as often as I would like to.
6. What kind of camera do you use to shoot?
I use a Canon Powershot SD1400 Digital Elph. I always buy Canons. I love 'em.
7. Who or what models your items?
I use a variety of things, and sometimes people! Although, my sister is really great with photography, so I will often let he get behind the lens, and I get to be the model. But, I also like to use found objects, like leaves and twigs, and I balance my work among them.
8. What's the most rewarding part of running your own business?
Seeing how people respond to what I make them! Whether it is a custom piece, or something they just pick up and buy, it's great to see their faces, or read their feedback.
9. What's the most challenging part of running your own business?
There are a lot of challenges! I owned a scrapbooking store for a few years, and I can tell you, there were so very many challenges! Making your money back is probably the biggest. It is so hard to put a price on crafts. You not only put in a lot of time, but so much of yourself into what you make. That's probably the hardest thing... figuring out prices and making that money.
10. On average, how many things do you create per week?
I would say that I probably make from 6-10 things each week. Most often they are cards, so I can get those done fairly quickly. But lately, I have also been making necklaces and key chains with washers, and I can (literally) bang out a few of those in a day.
11. What inspires you?
Everything! My kids, nature, my mom. Fabric, paper, everything I see can be inspirational. I never go to one specific place for inspiration...it's all around me. Pinterest is a great source of inspiration lately too!
12. Take me thru your creative process.
It really depends on what I am working on. If I need to use some sort of stamped or digital image, I always start there. With the coloring. I just play. I never worry about whether or not I have something to coordinate with it. Because, I have so much stuff, I am bound to! And if perchance I don't, I'll make something. So, after I'm done coloring, I will gather scraps of paper that I think will look good. Then I try to play around with those scraps to get them to make a cool layout. After I get all of that assembled and cut, I will look for embellishments that work. Sometimes I have to alter things, or make them myself, but I always enjoy doing that. The last thing I do is glue. I am constantly changing things up as I find new scraps or materials, so I always need to glue last. Otherwise, I would never be happy with the finished project!
13. What is your best advice to blossoming crafters?
Be yourself! Look to others for ideas, but never lose yourself. You need to be at the root of all of your creations. Don't make it into work, always make it about playing and fun!
You can find Alison's shop here. You can check out her blog here!
Thanks for the interview Alison, this was really fun!