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Friday, 20 November 2009
Friday Finds... IvyKeep
This is my tenth interview of the amazing not-so-well-known artists of Etsy.
Today I am posting an interview with a lovely teamaker known on Etsy as Ivykeep! It's probably in my veins being a Brit but I just LOVE tea and was very excited to find such gorgeous looking blends from someone who seems as equally passionate about tea variety. I will certainly be giving some of her blends a go at some point, especially the gorgeous pressed green tea hearts, how cute! So feeling very inspired by her store I just had to ask for an interview of course, and so pleased that she took the time out to complete my questionnaire. So here is Ivykeep on Etsy!
(Just click the images to go direct to the listings)
-- Tell me a bit about you! (Name, Age, Location, and give us a random fact whilst you're at it.) My name is Krystyne and I live in wine country - the Niagara Region - in Ontario. I moved here while attending Brock University. After graduation, I stayed. Then I met my husband and settled here.
-- What is your business about then? Tea. All kinds of tea. Here in Niagara we have a culinary school, fine restaurants and we have wineries, but if I made it about food and wine, I'd be eating and tipsy all day. *grin* With tea, I can enjoy all the great flavours with which this region inspires me, without the guilt. Besides - I love tea.
-- How did Etsy come into your life? I was doing a search one day for a present for a friend. Following the links, I found etsy, was intrigued and stayed to buy things. In fact, it's my first stop now. Recently, I decided to open my shop here.
-- Are you working a day job too? Yes. I work in ecommerce. I set up people's on-online stores and shopping carts and help them get going. I love that job too.
-- How long has the artist inside been 'unleashed' for? For as long as I can remember. However, the materials kept changing. I used to draw. Then I moved to computer graphics. I also make jewellery, cards, bookmarks, and occasionally sew (mostly historic costumes).
-- What has been the inspiration behind your business? I think I mentioned earlier that I am in wine country and surrounded by great food due to the culinary school, fabulous bed and breakfasts and incredible restaurants in the area. The tastes of the Niagara Region definitely inspire me.
-- If you could describe your products in three words, what would you tell me? Fresh. Affordable. Quality.
-- What would an average working day for you be like from dawn til dusk? Morning - check email and orders.
Mid-morning - go to the day job.
Supper time - return home. Check email and orders again. Print orders. Pack orders.
Evening - try out new blends in the kitchen. When I find one I like, it will go to the blending kitchen and be packaged. I also use the evenings to work on the website, create new labels, and work on newsletters and marketing ideas.
-- What's your favourite material and techniques to work with? I have a little "flavour rack" in my kitchen that has core teas in it and mixing ingredients - the same idea as a "perfumer's organ". This allows me to go wherever the muse takes me. I love working with all the teas, but my current favourite (which will change once winter has come and gone) is chocolate flavourings.
-- What is your ideal vision for the future for you and your work? I always joke that this is my retirement plan, but the truth of the matter is, I'd rather be doing this than pretty much anything else. I'd like to see it take off so that I can hire someone for the more mundane aspects and leave me to be creative. There is never enough time for creative pursuits when you wear all the hats in a business.
-- Away from work, what do you like to do for fun or to wind down? I curl up with my latest tea blend of choice and a good book.
-- What are you likely to search for on Etsy? I love searching etsy for vintage teaware and I have had some wonderful tags and cards and packaging done up by artists on etsy. I also met my photographer there.
-- Any last words? Etsy is a great community, full of wonderful handmade items. It is also a great place to sell. I have met tons of great people - all of which I'd love to have to tea sometime!