This week I’m doing the Favorite Etsy Shop of the Week posting a little different- its an interview!
This week’s interview is of ButterfliesWing! She runs an adorable shop of various accessories.
I asked ButterfliesWing a few questions.
1. Tell us a bit about yourself name, location, affiliations, personal stuff.
My name is Johanna Guy, just about everyone calls me Hanna. I live in Sheridan Wyoming. My backdoor is pretty much at the foot of the Big Horn Mountains. It’s very beautiful here, apart from being pretty chilly right now. I come from a big family three brothers and one sister. I am the middle child. Don’t worry I don’t suffer from the Jan Brady syndrome. I moved back here a little over a year ago. I was going to school in Laramie where the University or Wyoming is located. I like living near my family and close friends, and I also appreciate the low crime rate and clean air, wasn’t such a draw when I was a kid but I am a little older and a little wiser now. It’s a good place to have a family.
2. Apart from creating things, what do you do?
I like both solitary activities and to be social. I am a bookworm of the highest order. I also am a writer. I draw, paint, take photographs. I love going to the movies, and I have music playing whenever I can. I also like to hang out at the coffee houses. I love to play games, “Past Lives, and Yahtzee are my favorites. I love to cook and I having diner parties with family and friends, I love to go out dancing or to a play or concert. I have recently started to work out and I am planning on joining the College choir in January. Ohh and I can’t forget to mention my dogs, I have two miniature schnauzers and a west highland terrier, I play with them and take them to the park.
3. Please describe your creative process how, when, materials, etc.
I don’t ever know when I am going to be creative sometimes I try to schedule it other times ideas just come to me, I try to sketch them out when they come, its like seeing an old friend I always try to make the time for when I get a visit. Other times I will just select a bunch of flowers and start from there. I always try to at least give each idea a shot. Not all of them can be winners but you never know until you try. So I try. I use all sort of materials and I am always looking. I mean always, there were pine cones in my yard a couple of months ago so I picked up a few and incorporated one. I go to a lot of local businesses, all around town, I go to antique shops, boutiques, thrift stores, estate sales, etc. You just never know when you will find buried treasure, I have mad magpie skills and can find whatever glitters or gleams with great abandon.
4. What led you to start creating your art/craft?
I discovered Etsy, and I had been playing with this idea of learning ribbon working. I wanted to make hair pieces, purses, and jewelry incorporating that idea. I also liked the idea of making these pieces for special occasions. Being a part of someone’s wedding day, or prom, or special night, would be wonderful. That idea gives me the warm fuzzies.
5. How did you decide what medium you wanted to work with?
I went to buy ribbon and it wasn’t that easy to find what I needed so I decided to start with silk flowers and then when I could afford it to buy ribbon, I should explain that when I moved home I couldn’t find a very good paying job and that I work at a daycare. The children are wonderful but the pay is awful. I simply couldn’t afford to buy a lot of expensive ribbon, you need quite a variety to make very much, and I would also have had to order it because like I said there isn’t a lot of variety here. I couldn’t make what I wanted, so I started with what I thought would be cheaper. I started collecting silk flowers and now I have a garden in my room. I also wanted to have 100 items before I opened my store, but I decided that wasn’t such a good idea. So I opened up with about fifty and I have been adding to it over the last month.
6. what aspect of creating your art/craft do you find the most enjoyable?
I really love all of it. I love shopping to find treasures and find something that might have been over looked and give it a new life. I love making the item, especially the tiaras and the masks. I love photographing them, and I love posting it, getting to see something like that where you make it and them distribute it, is an experience that only a place like Etsy can offer.
7. If you had to choose one other medium in which to display your “creativity”, what would that be and why?
Writing. You don’t get to pick your gifts, they are given. So that was what I got. Don’t get me wrong I love it, it’s just something you have to be really disciplined about, if not you don’t have much to show. I am re-working my first novel right now. So fingers crossed maybe I will get to be a published writer, like Pinocchio getting to be a real boy, I could be a real writer.
8. What handmade possession do you most cherish?
My mom gave me a decorative pillow a few Christmas’s ago that she had made with needle work on the front, a pink rose with a green ribbon.
9. Name your top five books, movies, songs/musical groups, and web sites besides Etsy.
1. Dangerous Angels by Francesca Lia Block
2. Lamb by Christopher Moore
3. Jitterbug Perfume by Tom Robbins
4. Possession by A.S. Byatt
5. Five Stories by J.D. Salinger
1. Somewhere in Time
2. A Room with a View
4. Dead Poet’s Society
5. Some Like it Hot
1. Loreena McKennit
2. Dave Mathews Band
3. Sarah McLaughlan
5. Katie Melua
3. Pyramid Collection
4. You Tube
10. What are your favorite features on Etsy? What new features would you like to see?
My favorite features are the treasuries and the gift guides, like geek, or girlie girl. I wish they would add the shipping in the first screen so you knew how much you were spending instead of almost having to almost be to the final screen before you know. And to be able to take a percent off of the total as a seller, if you have a sale, so you don’t have to individually change each price, and can adjust it easier.
11. How do you promote your work?
Good question. I am trying to figure that out. I am relatively new. I have had a store for about two months. I have linked to facebook, got Google analytics so I could better understand where traffic comes from. I work on my tag words, and am trying to learn about search engine optimization. I am going to start a blog soon as well as a twitter account. I have talked in the forums a little bit, I need to do that more and then of course I need to start re-listing. I didn’t really understand about that at first and it was going to the forums that I got a few questions I had, answered. That’s one thing that’s really great about this place, there is a really helpful community out there.
12. In ten years I’d like to be…
Have my own business, full time. Be a published author. Own a Victorian house with a gazebo in the back surrounded by rose bushes and lilac trees, that I can sit and create in, whatever I dream up.
13. Where else on the net can we find you and your goods? twitter, blog, flikr account?
I have a facebook account, just friends request me under Johanna Guy, it will say casper because sheridan isn’t an option. Just mention Etsy and I will add you. I also have a blog, www.romanticjunkiepoet.blospot.com. Any updates I will post there as well. I plan to get a and a twitter very soon and when I do, if you check out my blog you will know.