Friday, May 20, 2011

Feature Friday: A Dream's Recovery

Today we're reprising our Friday Features! I'm very excited to bring you a new interview with a creative and talented WEST shop each week.

We begin with A Dream's Recovery

My name is Crystal. I am a prairie girl who loves the outdoors. This year, my new husband and I moved to the thriving metropolis of Winnipeg. We are currently child-free, though we plan to begin stretching the boundaries of our family within a few years. So we moved to the city anticipating enjoying all that it has to offer before we move back home (to small town Manitoba) to start our family near grandparents - aka convenient and loving childcare!

I love to create and have always been making "stuff". I am a collector at heart and quite resourceful. In the past I have found that it is hard for me to let go of beautiful things I have discovered. However, I've found that through repurposing these beautiful things, I can create something new that can enrich other people's lives. That exhilarates me!

Why did you choose Etsy to host your shop?

I have been an avid window shopper on Etsy since I found the website in 2008. It has been a source of inspiration for me. I love the artist profiles that give you a glimpse into the crafter's world and the ways the buyer can feel connected to the person making the product.
Where do you find inspiration?

Inspiration comes to me inevitably in that groggy time between waking up and actually rolling out of bed. My mind is strangely clear in those early moments, or maybe it's not clear at all, but more dreamlike. Whether I am working on an essay for University or making a mental to-do list, the sweetest and most inspired thoughts come to me then. Recently, however, after enjoying one too many lattes, my inspiration came at around 2 a.m. I believe I am slowly discovering that as I sit and rest, letting go of worries or distractions, I can discover the gems in the hidden world of my brain. It's quite delightful. If I ever needed a case for more sleep... well, there you have it!

I have to say, on the line of inspiration, that I am the type that needs to "see" to work. When I am mid-project, our house is full of beads and fabrics and wires and glue... it's a whirlwind! But I thrive in the chaos as using my senses - touch & sight - is what lets me bring all of my collected beauties and tidbits together to create something fresh.

There is a balance between chaos and rest that allows me to make the most of my creative outlets. This is why my husband often simply sits back and wonders at my paradoxes. I can't explain it, I can only describe it!

What is your favourite item in your shop and why?

It is so hard to choose my favourite product from my store! I guess I would have to say, currently, that my favourite item is my hair comb, made from upcycled beads and gold wire. This is probably because the item has bit of a story attached to it. I based this accessory off of a vintage comb I have had hidden in my jewelry stash for a very long time. In fact, I cannot remember where it came from. I am sure that it was once my mother's (I like to imagine that she wore it at her wedding. Or perhaps, even my grandmother wore it). How I got a hold of it, I can only guess. Most likely it was the fruit of a secret jewelry box raid, an event that took place often during my childhood. However, through much travel (it came all the way to Malaysia with me!) and use, the poor thing is begging to be retired. I love wearing it and had been a bit sad with the idea. However, I realized late one night that I didn't have to give up wearing such a beautiful comb in order to preserve it. I would make my version! So this item is my own, inspired by the past, bringing the old back to life once again.
Why do you enjoy your craft?

I love being a part of weddings (period). A wedding is such a beautiful moment in life. I was married May 8th of last year and still enjoy compliments for our wedding style and the way both Nate (my sweet hubby) and myself were infused into the whole event, from music and food to decor - especially the flowers. I loved making the bouquets for myself and my beautiful bridesmaids. I loved creating flowers for my little flower girls and different individuals I wanted to honour for their participation in our lives.

I have also loved being a part of my friends weddings in the same way. After apprenticing with a lovely woman in her flower shop for a year, I've been able to transfer my skills in order to help my friends keep costs down. It's been an honour to be involved. Undoubtedly it has been a win-win; I have gained so much experience in working under pressure, ordering and arranging on my own, and they have be able to have the flowers and design they desire for their special day.

Most of all, I love to use the things I find around me in new and inventive ways. Finding a way to repurpose fabrics, making them into lovely bouquets and etc. has been eye opening to me in many ways. I am constantly shocked at the amount of "garbage" we make. Nate and I often discuss how people would treat a simple pair of jeans differently if they themselves had raised and harvested the cotton, weaved and sewn, and finally created a pair of jeans. That person would definitely not throw them out when the knees wore out. In pondering how much waste we make by constantly discarding the old for the next new thing, I am re-energized to continue to find fun ways to recycle.


Click here to visit all the treasures in Crystal's Etsy Shop: A Dream's Recovery

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