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makers & creators

Meet Carrie Beth Waghorn

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Meet Carrie Beth Waghorn

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Meet the maker

Tell us a bit about yourself.

Well hello. My name is Carrie Beth, CB, and I am delightfully weird. I am an extroverted introvert who likes colored hair and blue lipstick. I have cellulite and small breasts. My favorite colors are black and yellow. I am the only surviving member of my nuclear family. I love cats and small spoons. My favorite noise is that totally quiet sound after a fresh snowfall when the world is coated in white and completely at peace and I will eat sweets at any given hour of the day.

Tell me a bit about your work and how you began making it.

My work stems from a mostly subconscious place. It represents the sacred bond between mind and body. It all began when I finally figured out my process. My process is deeply meaningful to me as it evolved organically and was a revelation of sorts, to the secrets I kept hidden within my body. I found that through my yoga practice, certain poses kept emerging as I set out to paint. It starts with music, sometimes weed, and movement. In childs pose, I check in with myself. I breathe. I listen. Through movement and rhythm my body tells me what it feels, I simply transcribe this onto paper through bursts of expressive energy. My body of work is an extension of my own body, the attitudes I have towards it, a map for the places where I hide, its triumphs, and its deepest wounds.

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Do you have a favorite project or piece that you’ve created?

There are numerous pieces I create and really feel quite attached to. It’s that feeling after I finish a piece, regard it and just feel like I am staring at myself, except it’s this weird ink thing on paper. Those are the pieces I keep. One of my favorites is a piece titled NO VACANCY. She’s hauntingly beautiful and one of those pieces that came out of me like a melody, no thinking or hesitation with the lines, and each stroke was perfect. Her face is vivid in my mind to this day. Despite her beauty her eyes seem empty, she knows she is being regarded yet she has nothing to offer. I painted it shortly after my mother had passed and it may be the only piece of art that fully conveys the contrast of what I truly felt. I know my friends saw me and loved me, but I had no space left in my heart. The piece sold almost immediately.

Can you share with us a few artists or makers that inspire you or your work?

My dear friend, Armando Cabba, is a living artist who inspires me deeply. He is a hyper realist painter who lives in Paris, France with his pug named Buttons. Armie (as I lovingly refer to him) is a mix between DMX, Picasso and perhaps Jonathan Van Ness. He is a broad-shouldered Italian man from Montreal with a cackle that sounds like sunshine and technique that still intimidates me. He don’t take no shit. Not to mention his meticulous facial hair. He moved to Paris and put his balls to the wall, opening up his own Atelier Cabba, where he paints every single day. He is set to give a TED talk about painting next month, received an invitation to Miami’s Art Basel, and has been featured in too many publications for me to be aware of or nonetheless quote. The reason I admire this man is that he is the true definition of an artist. He is consumed by his work, consistently revealing his inner turmoil through a running series of distorted self portraits. The portraits he paints struck me when I regarded them on my first visit to Paris. I stared at them, consumed by them. It’s as if he had captured the living essence of his subject yet here they were, bound by oil and a 2-D surface. It was living art. As for artists of the past, Matisse really wets my loins. I would consider him the quintessential minimalist. The lines of Egon Scheile and Toulouse are haunting. My muse would be Yayaoi Kusama bc she’s wacky and has been for decades and she’s still making at into her 90’s so fuck yes.


What is the hardest part about what you do?

The hardest part about my job is maybe just the general nature of my brain and navigating interactions with people who genuinely do not have any understanding of how and why creating is what it is and/or takes what it takes. I am fully convinced this is absolutely what I am meant to be doing. I don’t have a normal noggin. I wouldn’t consider myself a “normal” person. I am idyllic at times. I am bad with time. I do not respond to emails in a timely manner. Sometimes my orders are brutally late, so this is what I am working on. No one taught me how to be an artist-I am an artist in and of my own right. BUT no one taught me professionalism 101 either.... Deeply conflicted, isolated, and inspired, my outlook on life is at times abstract and based in the fantasy world due my tendency to idealize mostly anything, my future, my lover, what it means to be alive. I don’t have the answers, but I am lucky enough to share my inner workings with the outer world in a way that inspires and provokes people. Mission accomplished. But still fixing a few kinks.

Do you have any advice you’d give a young artist hoping to embark on a creative path?

My advice would be to just not ever give up. Things will look bleak, you might have to do the side hustle for months, likely years, but amen I say to you it is WORTH IT. Creative freedom is a luxury in that this lifestyle truly allows you to transcribe everything that is inside of you and turn it into gold. It’s pure alchemy. It is imitated by many and embraced by the people who weren’t scared enough to turn away from job security, guaranteed health insurance and paid days off. I will never be part of a company that matched my IRA contribution, and I will never be chained to a cubicle with an inbox of 5,763 emails. Actually I do have a ton of emails but hopefully you get the point. Just don’t stop. Also buy the book WAR of ART. It is the creative bible and you should absolutely read it.

What is your workspace like?

FUUUCK my work space is a DREAM. Shortly after my mom passed away I threw all my shit on the curb, moved home for a few months, then eventually crawled back to Charleston, which is where my sunny tree top studio is now. I am lucky enough to live in the fourth floor attic of a historic mansion in downtown Charleston. I don’t know how I got so lucky. My studio is East-West facing, it receives the most bodacious morning light that both my cat and I appreciate. I sleep on one end and my studio is in the perfect nook complete with a writing desk and this badass mirror my landlord brought back from India. The place came furnished. After loosing my nanny job, my mother and going through a bad breakup, the universe sent me a curve ball in the form of a heavenly refuge where I still wake up each morning and am basically like “FUCK I am sooooo lucky.” 


What are you working on right now?

Right now I have about 24 small works I am chipping away at. I’m happy to announce my collaboration with Well + Wonder, a delightfully curated online gallery run by Mollie Creason. I am also producing some pieces and designing a powder room wall mural for Paula Rallis, who flips homes, runs an event space AND an interior design storefront in West Greenville. I have three home installations that I am somehow going to squeeze out by the end of May. I love painting peoples walls! I’ll be painting the home of Andrea Serrano (Charleston Shop Curator), Paula’s home and a wonderful natural mamma, Rachel James (Young Living). WHEW! 


Do you have any insight or tips for how to write about your work for other artists who may be struggling to do so?

SO my advice for writing about your work is to make sure that you actually have a body of work to start with because if you do, it’s easy. Just describe who you are and why you create. Where does your art come from? What are you trying to say with your art? What is the reason you are doing what you’re doing? If you know your story, it’s easy. If you’re another affluent house wife who picked up a paintbrush, smeared it across canvas and now call yourself an artist then you may struggle with telling others about your work. There are a lot of people (cough cough INSTAGRAM) who legit have over 20K followers on Instagram yet when I look at their body of work its de-centralized, and resembles TJ-MAXX color vomit rather than an articulate, skilled body of work. It takes more than putting paint on canvas to be an artist. IF you are a true artist, writing about your work is as simple as telling your story from an honest place in your heart.


Is your creative work your full time job? If not, can you share a bit about other work you do either full time, part time or on the side?

Here we go. I would argue that I am on paper, a full-time creative though if you were to look at my brain (realistically) I’m maybe 50% a full time artist. For years I had multiple side hustles which included anything and everything from slinging lattes to wiping baby butts. I still wipe baby butts but only as needed if I want some extra cash. Signing a gallery contract with Meyer Vogl has been pretty life changing. Instead of having 3-4 jobs, I now have a fine art business and a textile business which in an ideal world I would devote all my brain and time to. With this said-mentally I struggle to fully immerse myself into the many hats I am wearing. My mental health is a constant battle-I am never the same person from day to day so even though I might have well-planned intentions, they can sometimes be thwarted despite my best efforts to maintain deadlines and meet personal goals. People do not get this, and the ones that do are usually creatives themselves but I have had client issues in the past simply because I am doing too many things all at once. I am still learning. I am always growing, and one day I hope to fully tether the chord of side-gig security so that my brain can properly compartmentalize and maybe I can get my shit together once and for all. To me that would be running my two creative businesses side by side and nothing else for extra income. OH TO DREAM. 


If or when you find yourself in a creative rut, how do you get yourself out of it?

So it took me a looooong time to figure this out and if I am being honest, I still fall into periods of inactivity. I’ve found out a few things: I’m one part artist, one part writer and one part comedian. If I am stuck I probably need to write, interpret my dreams and just get all that shit out of my head and onto some paper. I need to laugh, I need to take breaks to create space for joy. Figuring out the source of what’s preventing me from creating is key to being able to create. A lot of times I found that my inner dialogue was basically just plain mean when it came to pep talks or explanations of why I was feeling down. It’s a ton of self-sabotage fueled by fear of failure with intermittent bouts of actual depression. I have mental health issues. I don’t know any artist or human alive that doesn’t. When I am having a bout of depression, I ALLOW myself to feel depressed. I think as a society we are so hyper focused on perfection that negative emotions are seen as something we need to avoid, push down or deny. I let myself be bed ridden for days at a time, I don’t fight it. I am gentle. I tell myself that its ok, that it won’t last forever. It doesn’t feel good. But for awhile that mean voice in my head was the bully on the playground that kept me paralyzed for days and in retrospect, years. Telling myself I am a lazy asshole on a day when I have my period and Mercury is in retrograde is NOT the solution to clearing my obstruction. So my advice is to be a decent human being to yourself. Accept that there will be bad days no matter how many pieces of art you sell or how great your hair looked that one day you saw your crush in your fav east side café.

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Meet Zoe DeJesus

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Meet Zoe DeJesus

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Meet the maker

Tell us a bit about yourself.

My name is Zoe DeJesus. I'm an artist from New Jersey.

Tell me a bit about your work and how you began making it.

I've always wanted to do something creative. I dabbled in quite a few things as a child and as a teenager. I did choir and theater and always had a natural affinity for creating art of some kind. In college I studied theater and thought I was going to pursue that after graduating. But I ended up doing odd jobs and being very unsure of myself. I went through a low period where I was very frustrated with life and because of that I began making art to relieve stress. I started sharing my work on Instagram and it became a bit of a hobby. Friends and family responded positively and people started wanting to buy my work so I pursued it and it became a much larger part of my life and my identity.

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Do you have a favorite project or piece that you’ve created?

I'm not sure I have a favorite. I'm very critical of my work, more than I'd like to be.  But I am proud of the style that I've developed over the years and I'm interested to see where it goes as I continue making art. 

Can you share with us a few artists or makers that inspire you or your work?

Yes, definitely. Frida Khalo, Georgia O'Keefe, Picasso, Basquiat, Matisse, Mickalene Thomas, Ellie Hopley, Frances Cannon, Celeste Mountjoy and Isabelle Feliu. I'm sure there are many more but these are the ones that came to mind. 


What is your creative process like?

It's constantly changing. But I guess if I had to describe it I'd say I never have a concrete plan and I'm constantly problem solving and changing my mind. I just sort of let my mind go where it wants and I think my art reflects that. 


What is the hardest part about what you do?

It's hard for me to remember that art is for me and not for anyone else. Sharing my work on social media makes it interactive and trying to sell it makes me more vulnerable to the opinion of others. The hardest thing is to stay to true to myself and keep my work honest and original. 

Do you have any advice you’d give a young artist hoping to embark on a creative path?

Be consistent, take advantage of opportunity and don't take yourself too seriously!

What is your workspace like?

I work out of the room that I'm currently renting in Melbourne. It's small but it gets the job done. 

What are you working on right now?

I'm working on an investigative art series at the moment. I am interviewing people about their sexuality and creating paintings about each person I interview. I plan to exhibit the works in Melbourne in July of this year. 

Do you have any insight or tips for how to write about your work for other artists who may be struggling to do so?

Writing and talking about my work has always been pretty challenging. The only tip I'd have for this would be to write in a journal and talk to friends/ family. I think when you're in tune with yourself you can better understand the work that you make.

is your creative work your full time job? if not, can you share a bit about other work you do either full time, part time or on the side?

Making art is not my full time job. Right now it's a hobby and a side hustle. Since I moved to Melbourne for a working holiday, I've been working at a bar. It's nice because I have plenty of time to travel and work on my art. I used to work at an art school when I lived in the states. 

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If or when you find yourself in a creative rut, how do you get yourself out of it?

I have a few go to remedies for creative ruts. Sometimes I will listen to music and smoke a bit of weed and journal, draw or paint whatever comes to me. Usually something very abstract. I like to practice free association and automatism. I find it really beneficial even when I'm in a really good space creatively. 

If the creative rut is really bad and I can't get myself to create anything, I turn to other forms of art. Turning my mind away from myself and my work tends to help. I'll watch a good movie or documentary, read a novel or poetry, see a play, go for walk, exercise, or spend time with friends. It's important for me to escape my own head when I'm stuck. I think my creative ruts often come from overthinking. 

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Meet Jessica of Mottled + Thrifted

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Meet Jessica of Mottled + Thrifted

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Meet the maker

Tell us a bit about yourself.

I’m Jess! I’m 24 and from the central coast of California. My husband and I have been married for about 3.5 years but are high school sweethearts, so we have been together for just over 10 years. We have a 2 year old son, Noah. He is the funniest kid I have ever met (and maybe the naughtiest 😂.) Life is busy but so, SO good. 

Tell me a bit about your work and how you began making it.

My Instagram shop started out as a platform for selling vintage clothing and home goods. The idea of giving something new life coupled with offering others an alternative to buying into fast fashion felt so amazing to me. I recently discovered I am a type four on the enneagram (I know I know another twenty something year old bringing up the enneagram-don’t hate me😅.)  I have always been extremely creative, decent at a handful of things but not amazing at any one particular thing. Making clay jewelry started out as something fun, just for me. The first time I tried to create anything out of clay, I spent hours designing. When i went to fire my pieces, I came to discover that I hadn’t used oven safe clay 🙃. I tried again and again until I felt confident enough to start selling my designs per some requests! I’m still so new at it and learning everyday how to improve, but I’m loving every second of it. 

Every time I do a drop, I choose my favorite pair out and save it in a folder to my phone and on a private Pinterest board. I come back to it often to stay inspired and excited about what I do.


Do you have a favorite project or piece that you’ve created?

Every time I do a drop, I choose my favorite pair out and save it in a folder to my phone and on a private Pinterest board. I come back to it often to stay inspired and excited about what I do. So, a specific piece... I made a pair of classic arches for a drop forever ago. I couldn’t part with them until recently. They are translucent and turquoise and felt almost hypnotizing to look at in person!

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Can you share with us a few artists or makers that inspire you or your work?

Not someONE specifically. My inspiration is kind of tough to explain. I’m inspired by the ocean and mountains, the sky at night, dreamy interiors, sunsets, bohemian fashion and Spanish missions. See what i mean by confusing ? I think my inspiration makes more sense in my own head, but there it is for you. 😂


What is your creative process like?

When I first decided to start selling jewelry as a side biz, I made a promise to myself, I would not list anything for sale unless it’s something I’d personally wear. This mantra has helped me stay true to my style. (I’d call it eclectic??)  Sometimes I go into making with colors and ideas in mind, sometimes I need a bit of inspiration, so I’ll turn on some music and just get going. I can tell almost immediately if I need to try again later or if a batch feels right.


What is the hardest part about what you do?

Giving my self time to decompress from the job. I’m so passionate about what I do that it can start to feel obsessive. I’m working on taking time to shut off the work part of my brain. There are so many other aspects and important parts of my life that require attention. Before maker, I’m a momma and a wife. When I’m doing those well, I create better. 

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Do you have any advice you’d give a young artist hoping to embark on a creative path?

Considering myself an artist still feels so foreign to me, so giving “young artists” advice.... I don’t know if I’m quite qualified to do that if I’m being honest! I’ll give it my best shot... stay true to yourself. One of the most challenging things about what I do is acknowledging that there are tons of other people doing the same thing, and sometimes I think, why bother ? Why would anyone choose my work over someone else’s ? BUT when you stay true to yourself, and you don’t rip off other people’s work, trying to pass it off as your own, you quietly and humbly move forward, there is reward at the end of that. People notice authenticity. 

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What is your workspace like?

It’s my counter top and it’s a freaking mess when I’m working!

What are you working on right now?

The answer is always more earrings! Also, I have a new little project I’m thinking about adding into the mix .

If or when you find yourself in a creative rut, how do you get yourself out of it?

I touched a bit on this, but the best thing for me is  to remember why I started. For me, it’s because it’s exciting and calming and makes me feel proud. To see lumps of clay turn into art that people WANT to wear, it’s so rewarding. When I’m feeling stuck in a non-creative rut, I remember that there isn’t a deadline . I’m my own boss. I am allowed to take time for myself until I feel inspired again to create. Every once in a while when I’m in a rut, I’ll make a pair of earrings just for me. When I make something just for myself, it starts to turn the creative wheels in my brain. 


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Meet Maddy of McIndoe Design

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Meet Maddy of McIndoe Design

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Meet the maker

Tell us a bit about yourself.

I'm Maddy. I grew up in London but am based between the UK and Argentina at the moment. I’m a big fan of olives, cups of tea and chorizo.

Do you have a favorite project or piece that you’ve created?

Last year I got asked to design a print for the V&A Museum in London, which I've been going to since I was tiny. That was a pretty special project!

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What is your creative process like?

I wish I had time to mooch around museums and galleries looking for inspiration, but unfortunately I don't! Instead, anything I see in the street, watch, or even eat might give me an idea. Then I'll start sketching with a pencil before adding in line work with a fine liner. Lastly I'll scan the drawings into my Mac to add color.


What is the hardest part about what you do?

Working alone! Not being part of a team can be really tough, but luckily I've made other designer pals over the years so I know people in the same boat which really helps.

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Do you have any advice you’d give a young artist hoping to embark on a creative path?

Don't compare yourself to the 97,745,930 other people on social media who you might feel like are doing better than you. It's just a show reel of people's best moments. Also, don't beat yourself up if you have a bad day.

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What is your workspace like?

It depends, I have my studio in London with the collection which we ship out orders from, and then if I'm away from the UK (like I am now) I go to a co-working space so I'm not stuck in the house all day. I used to work from home but the temptation to stay in my pajamas all day was just too much.

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What are you working on right now?

I'm organizing a few different fun shoots to show off the collection in different ways, and working on new prints for next winter.

When you find yourself in a creative rut, what do you do to get out of it?

Sometimes it's good to give yourself a few hours off to take your mind off of things so you can come back to it with a fresh perspective. If I feel really hopeless, I might go for a run. The exercise helps to burn off steam.


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Meet Eleanor Garrard

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Meet Eleanor Garrard

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Meet the maker

Tell us a bit about yourself.

I was born in Reading, England, and moved with my family to the heart of the Yorkshire Dales when I was five. My parents chose to make this move to take over my Mum’s family business, a small department store. I was never interested in being involved with the shop until a few years ago, when it occurred to me how passionate about fashion I actually was. Since then, I’ve played a small role in business development, and gone on buying trips with my Mum to companies such as Seasalt, White Stuff and Great Plains. I suppose unconsciously I’ve become drawn to the industry as it’s what I’ve been brought up alongside!

I was never interested in being involved with the shop until a few years ago, when it occurred to me how passionate about fashion I actually was.

When did you start creating? What has made you want to pursue it?

It’s not been a particularly smooth journey! I’ve always known deep down that I belong in a creative industry, however after achieving As and A+s in my exams when I was 16, I tried to force myself down an academic route. Looking back, that obviously wasn’t right for me. Following burning myself out in my first year of A levels, I dropped out of college and took the rest of the year off to try and overcome some mental health issues. It was amongst the chaos of my life that I started to experiment with art and fashion, and eventually ended up combining the two! From there, people started noticing my designs and actually asking to buy them! My brand was born from a combination of unfortunate circumstances and a ton of accidents, but it ended up being the thing that kept me going! Realizing how happy creating made me is what encouraged me to pursue it more than anything else.

Do you have a favorite project or piece that you’ve created?

While my personal favorite design is my ‘Dino Mother Mary’ tee, my ‘Banana Boob’ design is the gift that keeps on giving. When people see it, their reaction is always the same:

1)      ‘Oh wow bananas as boobs, that so creative!

2)      ‘Wait… is that a snail as a nipple?!’

3)      ‘OMG it has a little nipple piercing on it!! I love it!’

It’s this reaction that always makes it worth it for me! It’s all about the details. Besides that, I’ve become increasingly obsessed with Catholic iconography, and how designers such as Dolce and Gabbana, Jean Paul Gaultier and Christian Lacroix have been inspired by Catholic artwork. I thought I’d put my own spin on it. That’s how Dino Mary was born.

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Can you share with us a few artists or makers that inspire you or your work?

I don’t think I have any particular artists that inspire me, however I am constantly being inspired by other creatives I come into contact with! I’m love how everyone I’ve met is so keen to support one another and exchange knowledge!


What is your creative process like?

Super disorganised and ever evolving! I’m always trying to better my work, and my creative process along with it. 

What is the hardest part about what you do?

Keeping all of the balls in the air, and keeping track of the boring stuff which unfortunately is quite an important part of running a small business.

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Do you have any advice you’d give a young artist hoping to embark on a creative path?

Don’t think about it too much, just go for it! If it’s what you really want, you’ll slowly but surely find a way to make things work. Don’t be afraid to get things wrong too. It happens to me every single day but I know now it’s a necessary part of the learning process. 

What is your workspace like?

A shed. Literally, a glorified potting shed, and sometimes my Mum’s kitchen too.

What are you working on right now?

I have a few more designs in the pipeline which I hopefully will have done in time for Christmas (presents!!)

If or when you find yourself in a creative rut, how do you get yourself out of it?

It really depends on my mood. If I’m in a terrible mood then I can’t try to be creative, because whatever I do will just remind me of how bad I was feeling and I won’t be able to be proud of it. When I’m all out of ideas I talk to my creative friends, and most importantly I do the things that have been piling up and putting pressure on me (which is usually what lands me in the rut.) What probably helps the most is looking to other creatives for inspiration. Pinterest, Instagram, or sometimes children’s books can do the trick! 

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Meet Danni of Awkward Child

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Meet Danni of Awkward Child

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Meet the maker

Tell us a bit about yourself.

I began making clothes at a really young age. It was the dress up box that sparked my excitement for transformation through clothes. It’s my earliest memory of experiencing childlike fun and fantasy that can come from something as simple as a skirt. From then on, I've always wanted to make clothes. Ultimately what my work is all about is unlocking the potential for confidence, joy, escape and transformation through clothing.

Ultimately what my work is all about is unlocking the potential for confidence, joy, escape and transformation through clothing.

Do you have a favorite project or piece that you’ve created?

Because fashion is so heavily dependent on product development, I really focus my love towards what’s to come. My favorite piece is one that I have planned for 2019. I do however love what making rainbow clothing has allowed me to be a part of so far, which in this social climate, is sharing a gender queer and sexually inclusive message.

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What is your creative process like?

It’s somewhat erratic and crazy. One thing I have learned about myself is that I'm a great starter. I get inspired easily and my mad scientist hat goes on. I then throw myself into new ideas. The journey for me is to juggle those ideas and follow them through, which involves having a diary and deadlines that I live my life by. Although they aren't dear diary style personal entries, I keep them at the end of the year like journals because it’s a really detailed documentation of what I do everyday.


What is the hardest part about what you do?

Definitely creating an empire and stability. As a new business and one woman band, things are touch and go and there are no days off. Committing to product is a big risk but I take it day by day. Working in fashion just fills me with such a warmth being able to share clothing with others. That definitely makes it worth any of the stress I have.

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Do you have any advice you’d give a young artist hoping to embark on a creative path?

I think that's a hard one because it all depends on your circumstance, but in my case, success came from just going for it! I try to learn as much as I can along the way and not wait for a perfect time when I feel ready to commit. That moment of feeling ready will never come. There will always be a scary jump and you'll have to take the leap a lot of times in life to progress. You might as well start now!

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What is your workspace like?

My work space is my joyful space! It’s actually really well kept most of the time, as my environment is a reflection of my mental state. I like to keep it as uncluttered as possible, however there's fabric everywhere of every color. I use those saturated colors in my space, like I do my clothes, to not only inspire my creativity but my energy.

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What are you working on right now?

I am currently working on an exciting project with fellow designer Cara Bloom who is a total 90's obsessed fashionista. We are doing the cutest collaboration you could ever imagine! It’s coming out early next year so definitely keep an eye out for that.

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Meet Chloe Treu of Treupots

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Meet Chloe Treu of Treupots

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Meet the maker

Chloe Treu shares with us her journey into the world of pottery.

Tell us a bit about yourself.

My name is Chloe! I'm 23 years old. I've been doing ceramics for about 7 years now. I started in high school ceramics class and fell in love! I got sent away in the middle of my junior year to a intensive wilderness therapy program in the middle of the Utah desert, which was one of the most rewarding experiences that I've ever gone through. Afterwards, I was sent to a boarding school in West Virginia to finish out my high school career. The school had a ceramics program solely for beginners. The teacher there was a beginner too! I worked my way into earning a key to that ceramics studio, at which I spent pretty much all of my free time doing art. That is where I truly realized I wanted to work with clay. Ever since I started working with this medium, it has been where I feel most comfortable and happy. I feel right at home when I am sitting at my wheel in my small studio. My father built me my own studio to come home to right after I finished high school. It was very much a hobby and an outlet for many years. For as long as I can remember, being an artist has always been my dream. I never thought it would come true so soon!

For as long as I can remember, being an artist has always been my dream. I never thought it would come true so soon!

When did you start creating? What has made you want to pursue it?

As I mentioned above, I started creating in high school ceramics class during junior year under the guidance of the best teacher ever, Mrs. Schultis! After high school, I worked in many different restaurants as a waitress. It was never something that I really enjoyed doing, but a job is a job so I stuck it out for a good four years. I needed a break, so I traveled the country with a friend for a month. It was the break that I really needed and wanted. When I returned home, I thought I had my old job to go back to, but it turned out that I didn't. It was right then when I thought to myself, "Well, now is your chance, Chloe! Let's see if we can make this dream a reality." I began to pursue this dream as a real job. That was over a year and a half ago now.

Do you have a favorite project or piece that you’ve created?

In general, my favorite things to throw on the wheel have always been mugs of different shapes and sizes. All things funky! I'm not super into making repeat ware. I like each individual piece to be totally different. I am for sure more of a wheel worker as opposed to a hand builder. It comes more naturally to me.

As far as projects go, my most favorite project that I am a part of is a collaboration between a friend and myself. We make candles! I create the ceramic vessel and she pours her homemade wax candles into them. They are so elegant and such a work of love. The best part about them is that when you are finished burning your candle, you can wash out your vessel and you have a drinking cup!

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Can you share with us a few artists or makers that inspire you or your work?

The first person that comes to mind is Melissa Weiss. She is a potter based out of North Carolina. What inspires me most is her use of wild clay. She excavates and minimally processes all of the clay that is used in her work, which is something that I hope to be able to do at some point in my career. She has a very distinct style and you can recognize her work from miles away. She’s such unique and inspiring woman! Another artist that I discovered when I was in high school and became infatuated with was Simon Leech. I use to watch him work on his Youtube videos almost every day. The way he works and looks as he is working is very soothing. He seems so comfortable and at peace when he is working and talking about the process. I have just always enjoyed watching him work. I am a hardcore visual learner so watching artists work and seeing their differing techniques has been a huge help to me in learning the ways of the clay.

What is your creative process like?

I feel that in order to create the way that I like to, I have to give myself slow mornings. I tend to work all day long with breaks in between. My process includes a to-do list, lots of coffee, dog pets, and sloooow work. I do not like to rush my process. I usually find myself in the middle of five to ten things at once. I work best this way. I like to bounce from task to task to keep my mind fresh and motivated. For example, if I am working on a wholesale order of 70 vessels that are all the same shape and size, I will break it up by throwing some large planters or funky pots in between. Repetitive work makes me bored and feel burnt out, which is a huge no-no when you make your own schedule.

What is the hardest part about what you do?

As a business owner that has grown her following mainly through social media (Instagram), I feel that the hardest part about my work is not getting discouraged by comparing myself to others, whether by comparing numbers or comparing styles. It is really hard to continuously gain interest. I have to constantly be mindful of the work that I post and the times that I post. It is something that has become important for small business owners.

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Do you have any advice you’d give a young artist hoping to embark on a creative path?

Go for it! When people ask me for advice on this topic, my usual response is, "You won't know until you give it a shot!" That is how I went forth with my creative career. It is something that requires a lot of work and it most certainly does not happen overnight. It is so easy to get discouraged, especially towards the beginning, but if it is something that you are truly passionate about then hard work and dedication is the answer.

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What is your workspace like?

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I have my own lil studio. It is equipped with a wheel, a kiln, a slab roller, and everything that I need to make my business work. I have found that I work best alone. Which I the main reason that I have decided to stay in my own space and not branch out to a community studio or otherwise. Over the years I have slowly made the space into my creative cave. It truly feels like my home away from home. I would sleep there if it was large enough, haha! I have decorated all of the walls with works of art by fellow small business owners. Surrounding myself with art is something that is super important to me and my process. It heavily influences me in my day to day life. It is certainly a small space but it is organized and houses everything that I need for where I am at today.

If I’m feeling burnt out or in a creative rut, I will spend a few days hiking in the Catskills, spend time with my dog, and see friends outside of the studio to give myself a chance to miss it. I always have my best ideas when I’m outside of that space.

What are you working on right now?

I am currently working on a huge order of candle vessels and I am so excited about it! To break up the repetitive work I have also been preparing for my next shop update, which includes lots of carving and leaf pressing. Different techniques to mix up the work load is always the way to go for me. I am also working on an awesome collaboration between a crochet artist and myself. We are making hanging planters. She has crocheted up a bunch of hangers for me to fill with pots. They are coming together better than I imagined!

If or when you find yourself in a creative rut, how do you get yourself out of it?

Take a break! Taking the time that I need and the space away from the studio is something that is hard for me. I spend a lot of time there and if I have days that aren't productive, I don't take it lightly. If I'm feeling burnt out or in a creative rut, I will spend a few days hiking in the Catskills, spend time with my dog, and see friends outside of the studio to give myself a chance to miss it. I always have my best ideas when I'm outside of that space, usually when I'm walking aimlessly in the forest. Another thing that I like to do is switch it up from the wheel. I will try out some new hand building techniques to really challenge myself. Recently I have been making a few pinch pots and coil pots here and there. It’s quite meditative because it is much slower than wheel work. I easily get lost in the detail and it is a very refreshing experience.

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Meet Hannah Welch of Carnelian Moon Jewelry

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Meet Hannah Welch of Carnelian Moon Jewelry

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Meet the maker

Hannah Welch shares with us her journey into jewelry making.

Tell us a bit about yourself.

I was born and raised near Detroit, and I moved to New York City when I was eighteen to study fashion. I've been studying at the Fashion Institute of Technology for the past three years as a business student and am finishing up my Bachelor's degree this year. In New York, I got my feet wet with several different internships at design houses and magazines before starting my current internship with a jewelry designer. I actually didn't start selling my jewelry officially until roughly a year ago!

I’ve been drawn to jewelry for the longest time, and for me it has always been my vehicle for individuality.

When did you start creating? What has made you want to pursue it?

I've been creating for as long as I can remember. Growing up, I loved having my hands busy with anything; chalk, paint, knitting, sewing, jewelry making - you name it. I knew that I wanted to pursue some type of creative career, and it ended up transpiring into fashion by the time I moved to New York. As a business student, you don't always get the chance to be creative with your work. Making jewelry slowly turned into my outlet. I've been drawn to jewelry for the longest time, and for me it has always been my vehicle for individuality. When I was living in Paris for a few months last year, I had a lot of time to be introspective and materialize these floating thoughts in my head of a possible jewelry business. Upon coming back to New York with some ideas sketched up, I made a trip to the bead store and then dove right in! I think what makes me want to continue pursuing it is that there is still so much that can be discovered in the process, and there are no limits creatively.


Do you have a favorite project or piece that you’ve created?

My favorite piece that I've created so far probably has to be these abstract face earrings that I make from wire. They were a product of me just creating mindlessly and curiously. I think that's what makes them so awesome. They all look a little bit different, and each face is its own little personality.

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Can you share with us a few artists or makers that inspire you or your work?

I'm really inspired by Frida Kahlo, both her work and her personal style. There's a pair of hand earrings that I make that were directly influenced by the ones that she used to wear. There's so much inspiration to gain from her outfits alone. She was seriously incredible.


What is your creative process like?

My creative process differs every day. For some pieces, I have an exact plan of what I want to make that I plot out in my head for a while before actually making it. For others, I just sit down and start bending wire and something magically transpires from it. Sometimes I just see things on the street or read something in a book that flips a switch! I think the best places I can go to get the gears turning is at the Met or a small coffee shop. Espresso is truly my magic potion.


What is the hardest part about what you do?

The hardest part is being adept to the connection between what you want to create and what your customers want to buy. I think it’s easy to overthink how other people are going to perceive your designs, especially if they are investing money in them.

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Do you have any advice you’d give a young artist hoping to embark on a creative path?

Well, I'd say that I am myself a young designer trying to still pursue this as my career in some way! However, if there are other young people trying to further a creative passion of theirs, I would tell them to go for it. Pursuing something creative can be intimidating, but the feeling you get when others appreciate your work is so worth it!

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What is your workspace like?

My workspace is my apartment. Lots of beads. Everywhere.

Pursuing something creative can be intimidating, but the feeling you get when others appreciate your work is so worth it!

What are you working on right now?

Right now, I'm working on a lot of astrology-centered jewelry. Astrology is a passion of mine so to be finally incorporating that into my jewelry is super exciting!

If or when you find yourself in a creative rut, how do you get yourself out of it?

I see a creative rut as sign to step back or give my mind a break. Meditation, reading or a really long walk help me clear my head and make room for fresh ideas to come in. Talking with friends can help as well. I find that sometimes I have to go beyond my own head to find inspiration.

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