Monday, August 15, 2011

We LOVE Local Artists!!

In fact, we only carry local artisans items in our store! Did you know that our artists also work in our store? It's nice to know when you purchase something that you can speak to and get to know the person that created it. Each of our artists pays special attention to detail and puts a lot of love into their work for you, our customers and friends. We'll be introducing you to our artists and crafters over the next few weeks. Please take a few moments and enjoy a little Q&A with our artisans to learn more about them and what goes into the fabulous works they create!

Amy & Jeffrey Johnson of Handmade Family

What do you create?
Back to basics toys, blankets, accessories and wall art, focusing on growing families. Our little family and our friends' families bring us such joy that we would like to share that warmth with our customers. 

What is your bestseller?
Our best seller has got to be the Key Ring/Luggage Tags.  Big enough that you can find them in a purse filled with stuff, small enough that they can fit in your pocket.  The loop fits over your hand so you can carry groceries without putting your keys down.  And the colorful webbing and printed ribbon make finding luggage in a sea of gray suitcases a breeze!

What goes into making it?
Mostly rainbows and ground up unicorn horns. No Muppets were killed in the making of our products.

Do you take custom orders?
Absolutely!  All of our products can be customized with different fabric patterns or colors. Did you know we also do embroidery? If you would like an embroidered image, name or quote, we can do that too. Also, Jeffrey can do custom illustration to help tie together those troubling spots in your little ones room decor.

Who are you outside of the business?
Ha-ha-ha! It's not exactly the kind of business you get outside of much, is it? Amy works as a preschool teacher. She loves kids, which is a big part of the reason she got into making things in the first place. Jeffrey is a stay-at-home-dad during the day, and a freelance Illustrator and Graphic Designer at night. He manages to squeeze in a few personal Illustrations and blog posts using the remaining 10 minutes before bed. We both enjoy playing games, reading and movies.

What do you enjoy most about selling your handmade goods?
We appreciate everyone we meet in this community. With television and the interweb, it's sometimes easy to forget that there are actually real people out there to meet and talk to. 

Why do you buy handmade?
Rebellion against the Empire. Knowing that there are still quality products, made with quality materials out in the world that are made by actual people is a big deal to us. It makes us a little sad that the big-box culture which continues to develop around us seems to have legitimized a lack of quality. As I think about it though, the problem seems to go deeper than that. Not only have people gotten used to buying junk, they've also gotten so used to paying so little for it that the prices of high quality products seem unreasonable.  So by supporting handmade and local while turning away from the big-box stores maybe we can return balance to the force.

You can see more of Amy & Jeffrey's work through the following links and in our store:

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