This week’s featured artist is EtsyNJ team member Cindy Wilson of Mommy’s Dream Creations, http://www.mommysdream.etsy.com/. Cindy hand paints glassware with stunning, colorful designs inspired by nature (see above for a few especially lovely pieces). If you’re on the lookout for home décor with a personal touch, either for yourself or for someone on your gift list, then Mommy’s Dream Creations has something one of a kind for you!
1. The Tote Trove (TTT): Why did you decide to name your shop Mommy’s Dream Creations?
Cindy Wilson (CW): It was actually my husband’s idea! I’m living my dream of being a wife and mother and have the added blessing of homeschooling. He thought that the name was a perfect fit.
2. TTT: According to your Etsy profile, you're a self-taught artist who draws inspiration from nature. When did you first begin painting, and how does nature inspire you?
CW: I started painting about three or four years ago. My daughter learned the basic strokes from another homeschooling mom, and I decided to see what I could do as well. Learning to paint on glass was tricky, but I love how the colors and designs seem to pop. I’m inspired by nature because you can look at the same path in the woods day after day, and yet it’s never the same. The colors change, the shadows create different patterns, you see different animals. It’s the same with the ocean. The rhythm of the waves and tides is constant, but the patterns left in the sand are always changing. I’m amazed by how God has designed all these vastly different parts to work together as a complete whole.
3. TTT: Did you ever imagine that you’d turn your passion into a business? What made you take the leap?
CW: If it hadn’t been for a friend who always encouraged me and pushed me and my hubby who was willing to do whatever I needed him to, then I don’t think I would've had the courage to take the leap. We started out with local craft shows several years ago and joined the Etsy family in 2009. We’re growing slowly but steadily.
4. TTT: As a creator of home décor, do you find yourself incorporating your personal style into your work? How do you like to decorate your home?
CW: My personal style does find its way into my work. I like classic and romantic styles more than those that are modern. My current decorating style is “trying to find a space for everything.” But in the middle of the chaos are family pictures and things that make me smile. To me that’s the difference between a house and a home.
5. TTT: What is your favorite item in your shop?
CW: My favorite item is usually the new design I'm working on!
6. TTT: What items, if any, would you like to add to your shop?
CW: I'd love to have Christmas ornament sets ready for the 2010 holiday season. I’m working on designs for a Nativity set and a snowman set.
7. TTT: Describe your creative process. Do you follow a routine, create when inspiration strikes, or a little bit of both?
CW: With all that needs to get done in a day, I have to follow a routine, but that isn’t always the best for creativity. I have a small notebook that I carry around with me, and when I have an idea I sketch it out so I don’t forget it.
8. TTT: What is the best thing about running your own business? The worst?
CW: The best thing is that it’s a family affair. My daughter is seeing the hard work and cost that go into doing something you love, and that's something she can’t learn in a book. The worst is that there just isn’t enough time to get to everything I want to each day.
9. TTT: How did you discover Etsy?
CW: A couple of crafters at one of the shows last year mentioned it. I’d never heard of it (crazy as that seems now!), but they thought my glasses and ornaments would do well there.
10. TTT: Do you sell your work in venues outside of Etsy (i.e, other sites, craft shows, etc)? If yes, then how does selling online differ from selling in person?
CW: To be honest, if I had the choice between the two, then I'd sell in person. Selling at a show is a lot of time away from home and a lot of effort to set up and take down. But that interaction with the customer is just so much fun! Shopping online is convenient, but pictures can only tell so much of the story.
11. TTT: Who is most (emotionally) supportive of your business?
CW: My husband. He’s never let me give up, and he’s never complained about the mess he sometimes comes home to when I have custom orders that need to get done.
12. TTT: Are there any new artistic/creative skills you’d like to learn?
CW: I’m trying to learn to knit, but getting the stitches consistent is harder than it looks.
13. TTT: Tell us about life outside of Mommy’s Dream Creations. You can gab about your hobbies, family, pets, or anything in between!
CW: Between homeschooling, driving my daughter to softball and choir, teaching Sunday School to 3rd - 5th graders, leading a ladies’ Bible study, and refereeing between the three dogs and two cats, I‘m exhausted! My days are full, but I can’t think of anything I’d rather do more.
14. TTT: What are your hopes for Mommy’s Dream Creations in the future?
CW: I'd like to see the business grow and continue to do well. I'm hoping to go international this year with my first outside-the-US sale.
15. TTT: BONUS QUESTION. Just for fun, if you were stranded on a deserted island and had to eat the same thing every day, what would it be? You can pick a drink and a dessert, too. (I find that dreaming up a whole meal makes this game more entertaining!)
CW: Wow, that’s hard. Honestly, I’d want roast beef and gravy with roasted potatoes. I don’t think I could survive without my homemade iced tea (and a slice of lemon). Dessert would have to be my Granny’s homemade molasses cookies!
Thanks for stopping by to meet Cindy and learn about Mommy’s Dream Creations. Not done dreaming yet? Then find more Mommy’s Dream Creations here:Facebook: http://www.facebook.com/MommysDream