Tuesday, October 6, 2009

Meet the Northside Crafters: Pepperberry & Co

Northside Makers are excited to have Pepperberry & Co at their market. Sandra has built up her business over the last year and her drive and enthusiasm is truely inspiring ...

Tell us about what you sell.

Pepperberry & Co. is my boutique textiles store specialising in earthy, natural products. My products are crafted by hand using natural cotton & cotton/linen blends, use unbleached fabrics where possible & are 100% Vegan and Cruelty Free. My signature items include Notebook Covers and Passport Covers, and I am looking to expand with a Baby Range shortly.

What inspires you?

My mother, who passed away when I was 14, is a constant inspiration. She worked so phenomenally hard and achieved so much even though, as a non-English speaking immigrant from the war in Poland, she had so little. I am growing up to be just like her, and I love it! I am also inspired by the broader crafting community. I spend a ridiculous amount of time each day browsing Etsy, blogs, and great crafty websites, just soaking up the talent, creativity, passion and inspiration.

What's your favourite medium to work in?
I have two core addictions: fabric and paper. It's not a wonder I have two shops that celebrate each one! I believe you can create anything with these two mediums and a touch of creativity.

What would you be lost without?

My family! My partner Sharon and our five fluffy rescued cats and dogs are the reason I get up each day and live my dreams. Without their love and support, none of this would be possible!

What's your fave crafty read (linked to Amazon)?
As a crafter who wanted to transform a hobby into a business, I got a lot out of Craft, Inc. by Meg Mateo Ilasco. I would highly recommend it! The book I'm saving up my pennies for at the moment is Re-Bound: Creating Handmade Books from Recycled and Repurposed Materials by Jeannine Stein. I've got my fingers crossed it appears under the Christmas tree!

What do you like to listen to when you craft?

Silence! I've never worked well with any kind of noise, although I do tend to enjoy the purrs that emit from my cats as they sleep on my sewing machine... and on my fabric pile... and on my laptop keyboard...

What crafty forums do you lurk in?

I'm a regular in the Etsy forums, as I find I gain so much from my chats with other crafters there. I also pop up in the forums for the Etsy teams I'm on- the Australian DUST Team, the EtsyVeg Team, the Cruelty-Free Team, and the Vegan Etsy Team. (editor: Sandra also has a good post on crafty haunts ..)

What's up next for you on the craft front?
There is so much coming up! I have yet to fulfill half my ideas for Pepperberry & Co., and I'm sure there will be even more as the time goes. At this stage, I'm working on Christmas Cards and Baby booties, but I also have plans to expand my travel and baby ranges and release a Pepperberry fabric range. So much to do, so little time!

Do you have any UFO's (unfinished objects)? What are they?
I have too many to count! I even have a special box set aside for these, so that it sits there and taunts me from the bookshelf. Right now, I'm in the middle of making a Softie Mouse, hand-carving a stamp set and making a Coptic-Stitched Journal- oh, and learning how to draw!

Where else can people shop for your goodies?
I have two online stores on Etsy: Pepperberry & Co. and Papers By Pepperberry. I'm also a regular at Yarraville Markets and the Made 'N Thornbury Market. An up-to-date list is always available on the Pepperberry & Co. blog, and I always hold specials for Fans of my Facebook Page and my Followers on Twitter.
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