Hello there lovely Buttoneers! Cast your minds back to last December and you may remember that I took part in the lovely Joanne Hawker’s Meet the Maker Week. Last year the challenge was super scary for me, I was really starting to find my feet in the creative community and throwing myself out there further than I already do with this blog etc was a massive dive into the deep end. I looked back on last year’s Meet the Maker Week blog post and I want to run and hug 29 year old me and tell her to take her time, to relax…maybe even stop taking on too much! I was so nervous about each Instagram post I posted for each prompt, feeling a bit of a fraud when of course I wasn’t, I was just new! (Although I absolutely still feel like this sometimes!) I came out the other end feeling so proud of myself for joining in and so much more confident about myself and my job and the things I make.
Fast forward to this year and I can’t believe how much has changed.
I almost didn’t join in as this time of year is always super busy with Christmas orders and blog posts and general seasonal festivities, but I am so glad I did. I felt a lot more confident to join in because the friendships I had started this time last year amongst the other makers have grown and blossomed so I felt way less scared of making those initial interactions and worrying about what everyone would think.
I know so many wonderful makers now that it felt a lot less of a scary unknown party that you rock up to in fancy dress and it isn’t fancy dress!
This was great because it meant that I could be completely myself and share myself and my work to new people I was yet to meet and found new friends along the way! When I work from my little studio at home it can get a little lonely in the daytime, so having like-minded biz buddies along for the ride to be able to hash out the ins and outs of Facebook or the new seller features of Etsy or the new hoops to jump through on Instagram is wonderful and makes such a difference.
It’s like having a natter with a big mug of tea in a creative coffee shop but cosier and in my pyjamas…Someone seriously needs to invent that!
That said, I think that there is always going to be a part of me that is scared. Always a part of me that shies away from making the first step into something new or gets anxious about a new adventure in to the unknown – I think that’s a good thing though. I never want to take it for granted or stop pushing myself to make bigger and better things, to jump off the comfort zone cliff once in a while and see what magic might happen on the way down.
Making new products that I have designed and made myself, putting a load of heart and soul and a whole heap of handmade magic into is one thing, but throwing it out into the wild to be seen and looked at, for people to decide if they like it or not, to judge it or even part with hard earned money for it is super scary…Every.Single.Time. But, challenges like Meet the Maker Week show me that everyone is in the same pond, some of us are just on relatively new boats trying to figure out the oars whilst others are in yachts and ships and cruise liners even – but we are all still pushing away from the edge and into the unknown and doing what we love, every single day – After all who knows what being a maker will be like in 20 or 30 years from now? Who knows what Etsy or even the Internet will be like? Being all together and being reminded of that is a real comfort.
Not to mention getting to tell you lovelies a bigger slice of who we all are alongside a dollop of the creative goodness and treasures we have to offer on the side.
I wanted to share my answers to the prompts over here on the blog to share with those of you that are new to Eliston Button *Waves* or those who are yet to follow me on Instagram or Facebook but also so they are a more permanent reminder of who I was and what I was making, documenting them for myself to look back on in years to come. As a real memory keeper I will love to see how much has changed or see how I will answer the prompts in 5 or even 10 years time (I hope Eliston Button is still around that far into the future!) If you are a regular Buttoneer in this little corner of the creative blogosphere then you may already know some of it, or maybe you can learn a bit more about me and my little creative business…alongside a heap of sparkle heart and rainbow emoji’s!
Day One of Meet the Maker Week is ‘Who’ – Hello 👋🏻 This is a super rare selfie! My name is Rachel and I live in Worcestershire with my best friend/adventure buddy/fiancé Chris. I am Head Buttoneer, Designer Maker and Creative Lifestyle Blogger for my little creative biz called Eliston Button. My businesses tag line is Art, Design, Craft and Adventure and I try to input as much of them all into my life, my blog and my little doses of handmade goodness as possible! 👩🏻🎨 I have an Etsy Shop full of handmade treasures, a creative brain with far too many tabs open at once and I own a pink Vespa scooter (that I need to get back on the road!) I hoard buttons in colour arranged jars, love adventures and exploring and being at home in equal measures and I am Harry Potter obsessed!⚡️I love exploring charity shops for vintage treasure, I am an old soul but also a big kid and I always try to find the magic in everything ✨ I sometimes struggle with anxiety and depression but surround myself with rainbows and sunshines and wonderful people as my patronous against the dementors and love nothing more than a big cup of tea and a really good book 🌈☀️💕 I’d love for you to say hello! 👋🏻
Day Two of Meet the Maker Week is ‘What’ – Everything colourful and magical that you ever did see! 😂 Only kidding! I do however, love to make a menagerie of handmade goodness for my home and my Etsy Shop 👩🏻🎨 I love to mix up my days by making lots of different things and keep the crafty magic alive ✨ I love to draw and sketch out ideas from my crafty imagination and then digitally render them into colourful prints. I love to weave woven wall hangings with a rainbow of yarn and fabric and make fluffy little pom poms and sew them into garlands. I immerse myself in different textured and coloured fabric to make fabric collages of beach and seaside scenes and love to embroider felt flower brooches, earrings and hair accessories. Some of my makes I can’t part with but most are grown up enough to fly out into the wild to handmade loving homes in my treasure trove of an Etsy Shop! 🌈💖 What is your favourite thing to make? 🎨✏️✂️
Day Three of Meet the Maker Week is ‘Where, When & Workspace – My little creative nest is based in Worcestershire ☀️ I have always been a creative soul right from a child sitting on my lovely Nan’s button tin, scissors in my little hand cutting up mums magazines and sticking them in my scrapbook! I was a pro at cutting and sticking! ✂️ After a string of uninspiring jobs (including a year as a funeral arranger) I followed my heart back to art and design at college, came out with 3 distinctions and the rest is history 👩🏻🎨 This is a little crafty corner of my old creative space, the Eliston Button Headquarters (you can see more on my blog!) 💖 It’s not a photo of the new studio because it’s not ready yet! We moved house this year and are renovating and decorating it all room by room 🙈 I am currently working on a little desk in the end of our dining room, surrounded my boxes until it’s all painted and the crafty magic is restored! 🙈 However, I have so many ideas and plans for my new cavern of creativity so watch this space on the hashtag #elistonbuttonheadquarters on Instagram☀️ Where do you live? Are you local to Worcestershire? Wherever you are, I’d love for you to say hello! 💕
Day Four of Meet the Maker Week is ‘Why’ – well…what else would I do! 🤷🏻♀️ I can’t imagine doing anything else as a hobby, as a passion or even as my job. I have always been creative so when I took a leap into the unknown and quit my job as a funeral arranger to go back to college to study Art and Design years ago, I instantly knew I had made the right decision. I had re-found my ‘thing’ – who knew I could actually fit in somewhere and not be the weirdo that likes to knit and make and colour in all day!? 😂👩🏻🎨 Creativity is ingrained in my soul and I know I will be crafting and making until I die! ✏️✂️🎨 Embroidered felt brooches were my entry drug into hardcore crafting in my ‘grown up’ life and I never looked back. Now I am a proud of Maker of many different collections of handmade goodness, home decor and people decor in the Eliston Button Etsy Shop 💖 Why do you love handmade? What is your favourite thing to make? 🎀
Day Five of Meet the Maker Week is ‘Action or Progress’. – These little felty petals have been sat on my desk for a while now, patiently waiting to be made into a brooch or hair grips or something equally full of handmade magic ✨ I’m easily distracted by the next crafty idea that pops into my head – a bit like a creative magpie…ooo shiny…so things sometimes take a while to get finished! 😂 Then I’ll have a day where I just sit and complete unfinished ideas or work in progress and voila! I’ll have a pile of new makes! 💖 The more I look at these lovely fluffles, the more they look like little mouse ears! 🐭 This is generally how I work – I’ll have an initial idea, sketch it out and let it sit for a while so my imagination can bubble over with further inspiration. Then I’ll pick it back up again and make it more tangible or render it digitally, perfecting it and tweaking it for hours until the final piece feels complete ☀️ How do you go from idea to finished piece?
Day Six of Meet the Maker Week is ‘Shop’ – My Etsy shop is full of home decor such as prints, weavings, garlands and fabric collages for a colourful home full of handmade treasures alongside people decor such as embroidered felt brooches, hair accessories, jewellery and many more fun doses of handmade goodness! 👩🏻🎨 Every single one of my handmade products gets posted out carefully wrapped in tissue paper and tied with a ribboned bow before being lovingly placed into protective packaging. This makes them perfect gifts for your friends and family (or even yourself!) 🎁 Grab a cup of tea and explore at www.elistonbutton.etsy.com ✨🎀
So there you go! A whole week of getting to know me and my little creative business alongside lots of other makers. To find everyone’s Meet the Maker Week posts on Instagram search the hashtag #meetthemakerweek (or use that clickable link!) There are some really fabulous makers for you to discover or re-discover so it’s really worth a look.
If you are a maker, I would highly recommend joining in if there is the opportunity again, whether you are a new business or a more established business.
I guarantee you will find some wonderful creative magic out there and even tucked away in your own creative business!
Now I’m off to give some little green bundles of fluffy goodness a haircut ready to be crowned with red party hats before they fly out into the world spreading their Christmas cheer!
My new Christmas Sprout Pom Pom Brooches are in the Eliston Button Etsy Shop alongside their bigger brothers and sisters in the form of Christmas Sprout Pom Pom Garlands and Individual Christmas Sprout Decorations as well as a Pack of Four.
If you are still Christmas shopping, be sure to keep in mind the Last Christmas Postage Dates.
Also remember that the Eliston Button Etsy Shop is a treasure trove of handmade goodness all ready to post and that everything arrives gift wrapped in tissue paper and tied with a ribbon bow – Perfect!
Don’t forget, if you want to keep up-to-date with all things Art, Design, Craft and Adventure around here, remember to subscribe to this blog and become a Buttoneer to get blog post updates straight to your inbox so you don’t miss a thing! (It’s free!)
Until next time, meet me for a chat with a cup of tea in the comments below. I’ll click the kettle on!