Etsy Designers and Projects
Liz Bruckner | Date posted: February 5th, 2010
Project: The Fontaine Jacket
Company: Little Houses
Designer: Shanah Lewis
Who taught you to sew? My mom taught how to use a sewing machine when I was nine. I could only sew really basic things like pillowcases and bags up until I was 25, when I decided to go to school to learn to sew more technical things.
Describe your style: I’ve been told my designs have a very “military” look to them. They’re all quite fitted, have large collars, and asymmetrical fronts. Whenever I’m designing something, I make pieces that I’d love to wear myself.
Who buys your stuff? Someone who wants a garment that’s truly handmade, and one that won’t be seen on everyone you know.
What’s your real job? I can finally say that sewing is my “real” job! Before I got into design, I worked as a bartender for years and luckily it paid a lot of my way through design school. It’s been just over a year since I’ve been living off what I make from my clothing line and it feels amazing.
Project: Reclaimed Wool Sweater Brooch
Company: The June Bride
Designer: Karen Mitzel
How long have you been designing? Technically, since February 2008, when I opened my Etsy shop. But considering I’ve been crafty my whole life, doing it professionally was a long time coming.
What pieces are your favourites to make? I adore accessories. Hats, brooches, gadget cases, bags. All those little things that pull together an outfit and make it yours.
Who are your favourite designers? Like most people, even though I love high-end designers, the reality is that my fashion desires are limited by both budget and practicality. Were these factors not issues, I’d be swiping my credit card for pieces from Dolce & Gabbana, Ralph Lauren, Valentino, Chanel, and old-school Vera Wang.
What’s your advice to would-be entrepreneurs? Make sure you love what you do and what you make or it’ll get really old, really quick. You need motivation to be successful and if you can’t find that inside yourself, no one else is going to give it to you.
Project: Milky Flowers Clutch
Company: Eight Seasons
Designer: Katrin Seervald
How long have you been a designer? I’m not a trained designer. The truth is, I don’t even know how to properly sew. My mom and I work together to make the collections—she sews and I come up with the designs. It’s a nice arrangement that leaves my fingers out of harm’s way.
Where do you find inspiration? Whenever I go outside I find inspiration. The most inspiration comes when I can leave the city, breathe fresh air, and just focus on what I and others might find the most beautiful.
What’s your dream job? If I could create bags and accessories and do it for a living, that would be a dream. But for now I’m really happy having this as a creative outlet.
If you weren’t sewing you’d be… Painting. I love the freedom of using a brush, colour, and a canvas to create anything that comes to mind.
TAGS: Fashion Designer