1. What do you create?
Mostly t-shirts with what I like to think are unique designs- I really strive to be original. You’ll never see clipart on my shirts! My friend Ana, from fricdementol.etsy.com said this a while back “I think they are very educational and fashionable!” which I thought was so cool!
2. What led you to take up your craft?
For many years I’ve been drawing in my sketchbooks, taking photos, and doing the occasional “finished piece”. Since my husband & I have our own business (called Monoroid) screen printing t-shirts & record covers, it seemed like a natural progression to get some of my crazy ideas onto wearables. It’s really exciting because I went to art school for so many years and I never really “did” anything with all the training I’ve had. Over time, that can start to make you feel pretty bad and unmotivated. Doing Xenotees is just what I needed in order to get my creativity back in working order!
3. Which part of your work do you most enjoy?
That would probably be the feedback that I get from happy Xenotees customers. Sometimes I just can’t believe how sweet the comments are! It’s also really great to have worked on a design, or had the concept in my head for a long time, and then see it printed on a shirt for the first time- it’s dizzying!
4. Which part do you find hardest?
The hardest part is finding time to do all the things I need to do, the age-old dilemma, I suppose! It would be great if I had more time to finalize new designs and get them printed! I also get really behind with leaving feedback for my Etsy customers because I like to make it as personal as I can. That means hours of playing the “memory game” searching through feedback left for me & reading what the customer said in order to respond appropriately… One of my favorite people on Etsy, Nicole from lillyella.etsy.com, said it best – “I don’t like to leave cookie cutter feedback”… Too true!
5. Where do you get your inspiration?
For me, that’s a long list! From so many artists, my family, my cats, good spicy food, gardening, meeting wonderful people like you…
I could go on and on! I guess from life, really, would be the short answer. It might sound pat, or simple, but it’s true. When I finally get to move to the country, it’ll be even better!
6. Do you participate in any etsy groups, and if so, which ones?
I sure do- that would be the Etsy for Animals Group –
Team EFA! It’s a great group of shops that love animals, which is what I'm all about!
7. What's one material your shop can't live without?
8. What is your favorite item that you have purchased off of Etsy?
That is a difficult question! I would probably have to say my Western Art Glass Gingko Leaf, whipped up from a Jameson bottle.
To choose between that and my Bailey Doesn’t Bark glasses would be pretty impossible though!
They are both such meticulous artisans, I just love everything they do!
9. If I could sell one item from my shop today, it would be...
Probably my Star Moss skirt! If only Etsy had video so I could show it off a little better. It looks great when you spin it around. (Hmmm… maybe I should redo the pictures for that one!)
10. If I had enough money to pick one item on my wish list from any shop on etsy to buy, it would be...
One? Just one?!
I have to say it’s a tie between this Blind Spot Jewelry ring
& I want one of these in each color, but especially black!
Why do keep asking me these painful questions?! haha
11. What are the top three favorite items currently listed in your store?
Pet Lobster shirt in Slate
Giant Saw Blade in Grass Green
Good Luck Fork Shirt in Grass Green
12. What undiscovered artisans would you recommend the world to know?
Again, I could make you such a long list, but I’ll try to refrain! I’ll stick with some of the amazingly talented people I’ve found on Etsy.
RJ, from Bailey Doesn’t Bark,
Brian Western, from Western Art Glass,
Ana, from Fricdementol shop
and I just discovered this artist on Etsy myself today & I love her work- Robin Carlisle from Drenchedinwhite !
I wish I could list them all & if I didn’t mention someone I just can’t remember right now, I’ll start feeling guilty from this second on, in order to make up for my aging brain malfunctions! Really, it’s insane how many incredible artisans are there, and I discover new ones constantly.
Oh, one person not fully on Etsy, is my husband & I think he is an amazing undiscovered artist. Here are just a few examples of what he has done so far. They don’t include all the crazy drawings that only I get to see, for now!
Here are some from a show he did with his good friend Sam, who is also insanely talented (their art is mixed together):
The Human Hair show
13. What is the best advice you have ever received?
Start an Etsy shop! Seriously- until then I was only selling in one store in Brooklyn & a lot of my ideas remained in my sketchbook. It’s amazing to know that my designs are all over the world! Not to mention all the incredible people I’ve met on Etsy. It would be impossible to even count them all at this point!
Really, I’ve never experienced anything like it in my life. I was never previously a person you would ever hear utter “My friend, you know, the one I met on the Internet”!