This is the fifth creative corner interview. The series continues to be well received and its great to be able to showcase so many different talents.
This week let me introduce you to Aeyshea Jones from the Boutique of the Kitsch and Strange. She has kindly answered my interview questions and she has showcased her work. Which is so creative and continues my aim to show a wide variety of skills and styles.
Hi my name is Aeyshea Jones, and I am a Welsh vegan crafty lady who loves roller derby I skate with Reaper Roller Derby. I graduated in Carmathenshire’s West Wales School of the Arts. Where I specialised in fine art and painting whilst also undertaking a large deal of sculpture working with molten metal materials such as Bronze and Cast iron. In recent years I have applied my skills and material based knowledge to the realms of a much smaller body of work. Including crafts such as jewellery making, sewing, polymer clay sculpting and even up cycling old mannequin and doll parts.
2. Tell us a bit about your business.
Aeyshea Jones – Boutique of the Kitsch and Strange, well what more is there to say! It’s right
here in the title haha……. I am an eclectic eccentric individual and my Boutique of the Kitsch and Strange is essentially a real reflection of my personality. This in turn means I find myself making a lot of miniature crafts, art , jewellery and more with a kitschy, weird, wacky, nerdy, fan-arty, alternative fashion and even roller derby accessories.
3. What made you start your own business?
My idea to start it all was totally born from my passion to live and breathe all things creative and to maximise my time spent in an artistic and craft based environment. I just have to make things! No really I do! But it’s a real joy for me so it just came naturally and made total sense to work towards turning my love for the artistic realm into a dream career working with like minded creative individuals who share my passion.
4. Did you have any formal training or are you self-taught?
The creative areas that I am formally trained in would be Fine art, Painting and sculpture. The jewellery making has been all self taught, as with the polymer clay sculpting. I have worked with much larger scale sculpting with traditional clays during my college and university training but nothing so small as the polymer clay jewellery I work with now.
5. Explain your creative process.
Well in the beginning I was fresh out of uni and just making stuff for myself, I enjoyed making it but I had no market as such to sell it to. I was making a lot of big expensive things that were time consuming and never sold. I started making smaller things, jewellery, cards, ect and I saw lots of people making really cool things with polymer clay and wanted to give it a go, a friend asked me to make a sandworm gauged earring and even though it was extremely ambitious as a project I found I loved the challenge.
From then on I realised I could make much more complex things than I ever thought possible and started selling them alongside my other crafty things, and now I love being challenged with commissions to make something new. But the actual creative process I guess, is to have a thought, sketch a visual plan out and then get hands on with my materials making whether I am sculpting clay, painting or making jewellery.
6. Describe your typical day.
My typical day starts as any good day should with a nice healthy brew of tea. I have recently embarked on the most extraordinary journey of motherhood spawning my greatest creative make yet! My beautiful 8 month old daughter. This means my typical day is no longer organised as it would once have been. So I work around the clock as an when I can, normally nap times and evenings. So I have become a bit of a crafty night owl that avoids night time sewing to avoid stirring the little beastie. My Fiance helps out a great deal looking after her so I can work and also helping to paint and sculpt some of the pieces we work collaberatively on.
7. What is your biggest seller?
My biggest seller has to be my fan arty polymer clay Beetlejuice Sandworm Gauged Earrings
8. What have been the high and low points of running your own business?
Highs have got to be when I can see that my customers are genuinely thrilled with what I have made for them. It really gives me a sense of achievement when somebody gives me that sort of feedback. I have received a few emails where a customer has told me how thrilled their child has been with a necklace for instance and having a sense of something I crafted made somebody else smile and brought a bit of joy to there day is what I take home at the end of the day.
Lows would be there never seems to be enough hours in the day to get everything I would like done, but I am told that I can be extremely hard on myself so maybe being my own boss
sometimes makes me my own worst enemy?!
9. What would be your top tips for running your own creative business?
Top tips would be,
1, Network, surround yourself with other creative people. Don’t lock yourself away it’s very important to bounce ideas with other creative thinkers
2, Social media presence. Its such a powerful tool to reach your audience and it is totally free and a great visual way to reach out and find those people looking for all the beautiful art and craft that you have to offer
3, And of course always make sure that you dip your paintbrush in the water vessel and not the precious cup of tea!
10. What are your aspirations?
My aspirations are to keep crafting and making for as long as humanly possible. Whilst also helping to inspire others to find self expression trough arts and craft. I always quite fancied the idea of becoming an art teacher or art therapist. So who knows what the future may hold
11. Where can we find you?
Thanks to Aeyshea for taking part in my interview. She has kindly offered a prize for a giveaway for my lucky readers.
You could win this Moana style Heart of Te Fiti Pendant
You can enter multiple times using the entry options shown. The winner will be picked at random by Rafflecopter. The Winner will be contacted by Aeyshea Jones to send them the prize. Full terms and conditions can be found in the widget.
One Moana style Heart of Te Fiti Pendant – no monetary exchange available
The contest will close Midnight Wednesday 13th September
UK Entrants Only