Happy Friday everyone!
We've made it to the first Friday in April and that means it's time for another CCCOE artist profile. This month I'd like to introduce you to an amazing artist of many talents who's currently focused on some really great leather work. Also, Kelly has been selling on Etsy since 2006, so if you've got questions, I'm sure she can point you in the right direction.
One very important note, I want everyone to know that I already have my eye on the leather hair barrette in the first picture.
Without anymore delay, I give you -- Kelly owner, creator, designer of Tresijas.
How would you describe your style?
My style is rustic with a twist. I really enjoy using vintage supplies, in this case in the form of the letterpress blocks, on a material that they normally wouldn't be associated with. The same goes for my stamps.
When did you learn to do what you do?
When I was just out of High School I spent a year in Argentina. I met and fell in love with my future husband there and have made many trips back with him since then. I didn't just fall in love with him though, I also learned to admire the culture and creativity of the Argentine people. Whenever I traveled there I made it a point to attend craft fairs and shops that sold items by local artists. At a certain point this sparked my own creativity and I began to search for something that would satisfy my need to create.
I have always been a tinkerer. I opened my shop on Etsy in 2006 to sell beadwork, but my short attention span led me to other things. For a few years I was selling recycled record album pieces. After a long run of doing that I found myself experimenting with other materials. I started carving little stamps and mounting them on pieces of salvaged manzanita wood. During this time I began to research different printing mediums. I soon found myself collecting vintage letterpress blocks with no real purpose until I discovered that they could be used on tooling leather.
Once I made this discovery I realized the infinite possibilities will keep me busy for quite some time!
What are your favorite pieces to make?
I love making personalized keychains. There's something very sweet about a little token of affection that also performs a practical duty. Also, being that leather is the official third anniversary gift, many of the couples that purchase my personalized tags are still in the formative years of their relationships. I enjoy working with couples still full of romance and innocence and with a long and happy future ahead of them.
What inspires you?
I am inspired by my creative children, who keep me young and on my toes and also by the friendships that I have formed with the many creative and wonderful artists on Etsy. I don't know where I would be now had it not been for the old time CCCOEr's. The first several years of my time on Etsy were spent in the CCCOE chat thread. My children grew up and grew into an appreciation for their creativity in large part with the loving advice and encouragement of my CCCOE sisters and even the occasional brother. We laughed, we cried, we told dirty jokes, we even took a few field trips and many of us have formed friendships that will continue on for years to come.
Where would you like your shop to be 5 years from now?
5 years from now I would like to be doing what I'm doing right now. Working from home and enjoying my family. By that time my oldest daughter will be in college and my youngest in middle school. I suppose that I will have even more time to explore artistic possibilities that are as yet unknown to me.
What does your work space look like?
Messy. I am very lucky to have a little shop to work in, but I always seem to have three or four projects going at once. My organizational skills could use some help, but I suppose that with three kids I have learned to function in the midst of whirling and swirling activities. Maybe a better description would be organized chaos.
What is your favorite thing to have for breakfast?
A corn quesadilla with salsa and a dollop of sour cream. It's not something that I have often, but it does bring me the most joy and morning pick me up. I am ashamed to say that I typically have just a cup of coffee for breakfast. I tend to stay up too late to take advantage of a quiet house and in the morning I'm like most mothers, just trying to get everyone organized to get out the door!
How do you spend your time when you're not creating?
Mom duties. Usually I am checking homework, gardening with my husband, cooking with the kids or sneaking a little time to read. I also enjoy treasure hunting at thrift stores and antique shops.
Where else can we find your work (online an in person)?
I have sold my items at different venues and online sites over the years, but as my products became more and more personalized, I made the decision to consolidate and sell exclusively on Etsy.
Where can we learn more about you?
The best places to find more information about me would be my Facebook and Flickr pages. I post new products and special orders on Facebook (https://www.facebook.com/Tresijas). Flickr (http://www.flickr.com/photos/tresijas/) is a place where I have posted pictures of just about everything having to do with my family, travels and interests.