This & That

#MakersGonnaMake where ever they are!

I love connecting with makers from all over the world, we all have different passions, situations, and circumstances but what unites us all is being able to share our creativity with others.

A few months ago I joined Presscookie.com, a platform that connects makers and media, and thought that it would be great to hear what Makers from all over the world are doing and how their businesses grew or changed due to COVID-19, and how they keep inspired to do what they love.

I started The Tiny Dollhouse South Africa at the start of lockdown in South Africa, so initially had to pause some of the items that I wanted to produce until I was able to get in contact with suppliers. The time that I had I spent building my website, researching and more. I realised that E-commerce again is a great way to reach customers and it is also a very convenient way to shop. Here with some of what other makers was up to and what keeps them inspired!

1. TinyTreasures (Portugal)

Tania is a miniaturist based in Portugal. The mostly makes dollhouses, furniture and miniatures but also makes jewellery and toys. off-course I would be totally obsessed with her goodies being a tiny dollhouse owner myself!

Foto_presscookie

Tell us more about your creative business.
I started working with miniatures in mid-2008, after I had my first dollhouse. It belonged to a collection, whose editions come out with a newspaper weekly – It was love at first sight! I love art, design, interior decorating and I love creating new things in general so it seems the perfect hobby for me. After finishing this collection, I went to college, where I did my masters in History (my other passion). However, it was mainly in 2017 that this old passion come back and I wanted to give it a new dimension: turn this into my job! So, by this time I created a page on the Etsy and started participating in fairs and markets. However, despite having decided to start my business, I was afraid to leave my full-time job and dedicate myself entirely to miniatures. So I chose to keep this small business and my full-time job and dedicated to this in my free time.

How did the COVID-19 Pandemic change the way you do business?
During the pandemic, I decided to dedicate more of my time to my small business. Making miniatures and doing what I love went from a part-time to a full-time job. My sales have increased and now I am selling to every corner in the world. I am very grateful for that!

What keeps you inspired and motivated?
I feel so lucky – I love what I do! This is what motivates me: the passion for miniaturism and my constant need to create new things. Furthermore, I can also recreate, which also connects me to another passion: History. I consider my work to be artisanal, which also fits a lot into the type of business I really appreciate. When I’m producing, I can disconnect from the world and spend a share a little bit of myself in each creation I make.

You can find out more about her passion and business via Etsy.com or follow her on Instagram @taniafilipa89.

2. Earth Kind – Eco Friendly Products (UK)

Kamilla is the creative #girlboss behind this business that focusses on sustainability. She makes various products that include re-usable face masks, Vegan Soy wax wraps, reusable kitchen towel rolls and a variety of other Eco-Friendly products.

Tell us more about your creative business.
I am a single mum of one on the East Yorkshire coast of England who wanted to change her plastic waste habits. Through this created my small eco-friendly business. I have been running for three years and have just gone fully self-employed with Earth Kind. I love influencing others to make positive steps in reducing waste and aim to get more people thinking about the future of our planet.

How did the COVID-19 Pandemic change the way you do business?
2020 has definitely altered the way I work. I have been able to answer the need for reusable face masks, which stops plastic mask waste. I have also left my part-time job to concentrate on Earth Kind fully. Now is the time to work from home! Luckily my business has thrived during COVID-19 and I am so great full that there are people out there who allow me to have such a fulfilling job by supporting my business.

What keeps you inspired and motivated?
What keeps me motivated is the fight for our planet. This is such a huge issue and one that constantly needs people informing and educating others to make positive changes. I believe one person can make a difference. You only have to look at David Attenborough for proof of this.

You can find out more about her passion and business via her Etsy store or follow her on Instagram @earth_kind_creations.

3. EKA (Sweden)

Gilly is a British designer living in Sweden, she designs and sells handmade items that include Winter woollies for the whole family, new baby gift sets, interior design wall hangings and more.

EKA Wear profile image

Tell us more about your creative business.
I run things from a little farmhouse out in the countryside here in the South. I work together with a township in India called Auroville who ethically produce my designs, a range of handmade accessories for the family and the home.

How did the COVID-19 Pandemic change the way you do business?
I’ll be honest here, I used it to inspire me, I actually find limitations help me to get more achieved because there’s something to focus on and that added feeling of urgency to give you the kick you need to just ‘get it done’ I’m not going to say it was sustainable, because it’s definitely not been 100% focus and achievement the whole time! but it’s definitely helped me realise I must focus on getting my own site into shape and not rely on the marketplaces and wholesale for growth. The strange situation allowed me to step back a bit and look at where I wanted to take the business, my collection is mainly winter-based, so it isn’t usually a busy time for sales, but I saw some growth in my interiors sales which was brilliant, I think I’ll be having a lot more fun with that collection in spring 2021.

What keeps you inspired and motivated?
Motivation for me comes from feeling inspired, but this year has also forced me to accept that I need way more systems in place for things to run smoothly in those times when inspiration or energy levels dip. When I need to feel more motivated I love to get outside into nature to walk the dog or meet some friends to skateboard or go to the gym, moving gets the blood pumping and then I can come back to work with a whole new mindset.

You can find out more about her passion and business via her website www.ekawear.com or follow her on Instagram @EKAWEAR.

4. Moozle, organic cotton printed bedding brand (Netherlands)

Kate is British but based in the Netherlands, she designs and sells some beautiful bedding all made from organic cotton and sustainable production methods. They also have some other decor items as part of their beautiful collection.

Moozle, organic cotton printed bedding brand (Netherlands)

Tell us more about your creative business.
I am passionate about print, pattern and colour, my mission is to spread joy with my colourful, playful designs. I live with my husband and our 2 kids, I started Moozle when my daughter was 9 months old, I wanted to be able to work from home around her. I started making some of the first play teepees on the internet back in 2008 but recently went back to my print design roots (I’m an ex-fashion designer) and love the huge ‘canvas’ that designing for bedding gives me.

I only work with organic cotton and sustainable production methods, you can read about my Pledge to Planet Earth on my website here.

How did the COVID-19 Pandemic change the way you do business?
Some aspects of 2020, which has been a strange old time, have been the much-needed catalyst we need to prove to us as humans we need to change our consumer habits, supporting small ethical businesses is part of that, we still need to keep our economies moving and support ourselves in a sustainable way as much as possible.

By supporting small businesses with ethical practices we can keep the money circulating and keep ourselves democratic, vibrant and inspired! Whilst we as communities have money to spend we have the freedom to vote with our wallets!

What keeps you inspired and motivated?
The future is small business’ with big hearts!

You can find out more about her passion and business via her website www.moozlehome.com or follow her on Instagram @moozlehome.

5. Turkey Dimple, (South Africa)

I am a BIG fan of SMALL anything and Shalain is a local lovilee that makes the most beautiful Polymer creations that she turns into jewellery and also dollhouse items for my own store www.tinydollhouse.co.za.

Turkey Dimple Shalain Profile image

Tell us more about your creative business.
Turkey Dimple is a quirky brand of handmade statement jewellery and accessories. The brand is all about cuteness, fun and positive vibes! Each item is hand-sculpted from polymer clay and with love by Shalain.

How did the COVID-19 Pandemic change the way you do business?
During the pandemic, time to work was an issue, with my son at home and homeschooling taking up a lot of my day I’ve had to learn to simplify processes and save time. After selling through other portals and typing out invoices, the pandemic forced me to setup my own E-commerce site – which made the way I work quicker and simpler.

What keeps you inspired and motivated?
Turkey Dimple is all about fun so I really just try to have fun with my products and photos. I really love what I do and make sure that I put time aside to “play”. Playing allows me to think up new designs but also keep it enjoyable. I love spreading joy with products and posts, the response to them definitely keeps me motivated and then I just want to spread more joy!

You can find out more about her passion and business via www.turkeydimple.co.za or follow her on Instagram @turkeydimple. (Image by Hello Love Photography)

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Karen Kelly is the founder and editor of lovilee.co.za. She is a creative at heart and passionate about all things DIY. Learn more about her here and connect with her on social media on the links below.

2 Comments

  1. Oh wow! What a lovely article, so glad we could help foster connection – and so proud of all makers being creative and keeping their dreams alive. Thank you KaRi

    • Kari

      Love being part of Presscookie.com, gives creative access to sharing and growing our businesses!

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