What is your craft / art / creative endeavor?
Handcast resin jewellery and homewares.
Each of my designs is initially modelled in clay, creating the delightful imperfection which makes them truly unique. The clay model is then moulded in rubber to form the mould I use for my castings. Finally, each piece is handsanded to a deliciously tactile, smooth finish. This fully handmade process ensures no two pieces are ever exactly the same.
How did you get started? Have you worked in other creative areas before the kind of work you’re doing now?
I have always loved the sensuality and imperfection of handcast resin but upon moving to the States a few years ago, I was unable to find anything like the pieces I desired. So…with time on my hands I decided to make them myself. After much research, experimentation and encouragement from family and friends, here I am sharing my story with you.
I’ve always enjoyed a degree of creativity but have never taken anything to the next level. The impetus for this was actually my eldest daughter returning to Australia for school last year, and my need for something to help me cope with her being so far away. What really started as a bit of a hobby is now keeping me quite busy.
Do you work alone? With a team? Do you engage your family or friends in the work? What is your process? How do you ensure you get your work done yet still have a life?
I generally work alone so production can be slow, depending on what else I have going on at the time. My family are great for encouragement and testing new designs for functionality and fit though.
Unless I have a big order to fill, I usually restrict myself to my sons school hours on the days that I feel creative. At the moment I’m very much a one man band so I can pick and choose when I want to work depending on demand, so it’s still easy to find the balance. If business continues to grow though, I will have to introduce a bit more structure.
Where do you sell your work? Which venues are your favorites? Do you prefer selling online or in person? Do you attend shows or fairs? Is your work in a gallery or brick-and-mortar store?
Like so many others, Etsy is where it all started for me. I can be found at Resign.etsy.com. They make it so easy and affordable to set up a little shop and before you know it you have your very first customer! All my business has come via etsy. Blogs and shops have also found me there, which has led to increased publicity and wholesale opportunities. My goal for this year is to start my own website as well.
I have to say I think I prefer the anonymity of selling online, I still feel a little selfconscious being the identifiable face behind my pieces…silly huh! I was invited to exhibit at The One of Kind Show in Scottsdale recently but didn’t think I had enough inventory at the time, so will work towards that this year. I also have my pieces in a few gift shops and boutiques both here and in Australia and I have a steady stream of new enquiries from people wanting to stock them.
What do you wish I had asked you?
“What is the one thing you need before you have any chance of success?”
Unwavering confidence in your work (and a supportive family).
I’ve always had the supportive family but it’s taken me quite some time to develop the confidence required to really feel like I can do this. I was my biggest hurdle but once I gained that level of confidence everything just felt so much more achievable…and it was!
How right you are, Jennifer — thank you very much! And if you would like to be interviewed next, just head on over to DIY Interview.