This week's featured team member is Artsy Danger Lady and Etsy seller oursideofthemountain, creator of modern and stylish crafts for children and women.
Tell us a little bit about yourself.
I’m a simple country girl living in upstate NY with my husband and son. My day job is computer programming for a local university. In my free time, I love to spend time with my family. Starting this spring we’ll be building our modest new 1000sf home (mostly building ourselves), which we designed. I can’t wait to break ground! My husband is a bit concerned about having enough room for all my crafts.
Where does your shop name come from?
My husband and I grew up in upstate NY in the same area where the book “My Side of the Mountain” by Jean Craighead George was based on. It is a favorite book to both of us. A few years ago we bought property on a mountainside overlooking our current city, so “Our Side of the Mountain” seemed fitting.
Where did you start and how did you progress to the work you are creating today?
I’ve done various crafts all my life. Several months after my son was born, I felt like I was missing something. I hadn’t been crafting since he’d been born and really missed it. Since he was a big drooler, I hauled out my old school avocado green sewing machine and decided to try to sew some bibs. I’d had little sewing experience up until then, so I’ve been mostly self taught. After I got the hang of things, I found Etsy and started with the baby stuff. Since then, I’ve had fun coming up with new ideas and designs. I also do basket weaving and hope to put some items on Etsy down the road.
What is your process?
For my baby gift sets, I like to do everything in stages – cut fabric, sewing & ironing, then the finishing touches (snaps, hand sewing, stuffing, etc.). I do most of my work at night after my son goes to bed, which doesn’t always leave me much time. I usually have to keep plugging away each night to keep from getting too behind or overwhelmed.
What handmade possession do you most cherish?
My favorite handmade item is the quilt my grandmother made for my high school graduation. She is an artist and has since gone nearly blind, so it was one of the last projects she did. Taking up sewing I now realize how much work it must have been.
What inspires you?
It’s always so exciting to try out a new design and see it come to life. Custom orders are fun. Once I ship items out I obsessively watch my feedback. I love hearing from my customers how they (and the recipient if it was a gift) enjoyed the items. When I’m making gifts for others, I try to make them personal and fitting for the recipient. It feels good when I get it right!
To see more of oursideofthemountains beautifully hand-sewn items, check her shop out here.