I will start with Kelly Owens Pratlett of GemJunkie.etsy.com. She has the coolest and most reasonably priced earrings in town. She has been making jewelry for 6 years and she has it down pat. When I asked how it all started for her she said, “My sister saw a necklace in a catalog that she really wanted but couldn't afford. So, she did some research online, ordered all the supplies, and we taught ourselves how to make jewelry. We've both progressed since then, but that's literally how the magic happened!" I love that wanting to make her sister happy turned into a business.
If you are a bath nut, Samantha Hlavaty is someone you need to get to know. At her store NepenthesBathtime.etsy.com you will find great soaps for everyone you know. My favorite is the glow in the dark bubble bath, which I am not to visit my nieces without. She has been honing her craft for 6 years now, and although creating soap and bath products began as a hobby and a way to diffuse after a stressful day of work, that hobby has morphed into a full time business. Samantha told me that “As a child, I loved to raid my mom's gardens and make little concoctions using the flowers and herbs... really I have loved bath products, aromatherapy and botanicals for as long as I can remember. This love met with my background in Art, 3D Animation, and Design to create the Nepenthe's Bathtime line.”
Now we move on to Jasmine Turner who has been making jewelry for 5 years. You can find all of her fantastic work at thejasminegallery.etsy.com. She told me “I began making jewelry because I wanted to make unique pieces for me to wear, and I also thought it might be a good creative outlet. I grew up in a crafty family doing stained glass, pottery, sewing and many other art forms, and I knew that I wanted to continue learning new skills. I initially invested a lot of money into my set-up over a few years, buying ropes of pearls and every gemstone I could find, but at the time I had a very busy job as a project coordinator for a natural gas company in north Texas. I quit that position at the beginning of 2009 to travel internationally, and came to Austin at the end of last year to focus on my creative side. It's been one of the best decisions I ever made! I have really grown as a jewelry designer, have a great set of calluses, and have finally begun to see some monetary profit as well!” Be sure to drop by this Saturday to check on this traveler's take on jewelry.
And now an introduction to Carol Bradley of CarolBradley.etsy.com. She has been creating jewelry for over 10 years, and she told me that it all started when “I bought a necklace at an antique show and wanted it to be a little shorter. I went to a bead store for help on my lunch hour and ended up taking an extra hour. I went back to work with a shorter necklace and the first pair of earrings I made.
-Megan Russell of DemiDuval.etsy.com