What is your professional background? I worked as a bookeeper in my husband's business for twelve years before he decided to give it up. I was left with an empty nest and the question of what to do with the rest of my life. I wanted to develop a business that I could do from hme. I started to make and sell dolls which lasted for four years until Cabbage Patch came along. I couldn't compete with the marketing and adoption certificate which was the rage at that time. About the same time, I found a recipe for salt dough ornaments and taught myself how to do them, giving up my doll business. After a couple of years, I found a recipe and instructions for bread dough roses which became the basis of my business for the next twenty five years, giving me more pleasure and experiences than I could have ever imagined!!! Although the recipe stated that the roses couldn't be large because the dough was too soft, my challenge was to develop a large 2" rose that actually looked like a rose. I accomplished that after three years of trial and error! One of my fondest memories was when a butterfly landed on one of my roses, flew off and then came back. I was thrilled to think that I had fooled a butterfly into believing that the rose was real!
What led you to your current craft? Someone saw my work on the internet and wrote to me saying that if I liked working with bread dough, I would really love working with cold porcelain and she was kind enough to send along the recipe. She was right! I can work smaller and with more detail with cold porcelain which has led me to the creation of cold porcelain floral jewelry, a craft that I truly love!
How do you feed your creativity? Deal with a creative block? I gather ideas from photos that I take of actual flowers growing in my garden or flowers that I see in gardening magazines and books. When I feel that I've reached a stalemate, the best thing for me to do is to walk away from it all for a while and do some heavy housecleaning and organizing. I am then able to go back to my work with a sense of enthusiasm and well-being.
Describe your work area. My work area consists of a small table in front of the tv where I make my flowers, usually while watching a movie at night. The next afternoon, I move out into my studio which is in another building on our property where I have a workroom with another room for displaying and storing my work. There I can create to my hearts' content not worrying about having to clean up the mess that I make every day! There does come a reckoning though when it gets too bad! I like to work at night because my husband goes to bed early while I'm a nightowl!
How did you end up on Etsy? I discovered Etsy when surfing the internet for places to sell my work.
Other than your supplies & materials, what do you want with you on a stranded island? If I was stranded on an island, I'd be perfectly happy with my supplies and materials watching my husband fish for our dinner.........I couldn't go without him!
Any guilty pleasures? My guilty pleasure is butterscotch ice cream but it's hard to find these days!
Words of wisdom for aspiring artist? My words of wisdom for aspiring artists are "don't give up, develop a niche market, work to perfect your creations and after all of that, if it isn't working for you, try something different before closing the door on your creativity."