Monday, August 24, 2009

Behind The Art Monday

Today's featured artist is Belgian native Annik from Vintage Designs on Etsy. She lives in Spotsylvania, VA, near Washington D.C and has 2 daughters. She designs one-of-a-kind handcrafted jewelry, incorporating vintage elements.

How did you get your start making jewelry?

It all started with a box of my grandmother's jewelry. I kept this box in a drawer for years and occasionally I would take it out to look at the wonderful jewelry in it. Some of it I could wear, but a lot of it lay broken apart in the bottom of the box. I felt it was such a shame not to be able to wear these pieces that meant so much to me for sentimental reasons. One day, I decided I would repair the broken necklaces so that I could wear grandma's things. From there the idea grew to start designing necklaces with a vintage flair. I decided to incorporate vintage beads into my own designs. Once I made a few pieces I was hooked and knew this was what I wanted to do!

What inspires your work? Describe your creative process.

I am inspired in a lot of different ways: fashion, colors in nature, period costumes, art... Usually, an idea for a piece will pop into my head and I'll try to sketch it out on a piece of paper until I can create the piece. Sometimes, I'll just look at the different materials I use and get an idea of how to put them together. I love to incorporate pearls into my work. I am smitten by the feel of the vintage elements I use; their details, the quality, the difference in colors from new materials...

What are your goals for your shop?

I want to add more & more pieces to my shop and hope to get more business. Who knows maybe someday I can do this full time?

What do you do when your not creating?

When I'm not creating I keep very busy with my children, work, home life, and trying to enjoy a few things I like to do to relax.

What brought you to Etsy? Do you sell anywhere else?

I came to Etsy because it is specifically geared towards handcrafted items. I have some of my items on Artfire as well.

Where can we find you online?

I am on Myspace, Facebook, Vintage Rising, Indiepublic & some others.
What is the most important lesson you have learned through selling your work on Etsy?

To be persistent and hang in there. It takes time to build up a customer base.

Anything else you would like us to know about you?

I have always been drawn to things from the past. It is fascinating to me to think who the items might have belonged to and what their story is.