By this point you probably know I sell beads and canes on Etsy. I tend to talk about those a lot. A little less discussed is my Field and Fable shop on Etsy which has finished items in it. Not many because I am continually arguing with myself: do I leave them in a separate shop? Do I put them in my much larger and more successful other shop? And as a result, the poor thing is always neglected. Decisions!
The other reason my Field and Fable shop on Etsy tends to be neglected is that I initially wanted it to also have the work of other local artists in there. People whom I couldn’t convince to start their own Etsy shops for some reason. And technically, if I only “worked” for them, I could do that but I made the mistake of accurately describing my relationship with them and the Etsy rep vetoed me. So, to sell their work on Etsy, I may have to work up a different sort of agreement with them. And so on.
I hate when things are needlessly complicated for completely arbitrary reasons.
On all those lists of What Creative People Do or What Artists Are Like there is always something about how they’re easily bored or have short attention spans or have multiple projects on the go. I don’t consider myself either easily bored or having a short attention span but I do, always, have several projects running at the same time. That way when I hit a break in one I can work on another.
Tooaquarius has been my beady and polymer clay concern for years. The name came out of a version of my gaming name from ages back and it’s officially been my claying name online and at shows for about twelve years or so. During that time I’ve done a few other projects – Claychicks, with my good friend Carolyn, comes to mind – and a few of the ones going on these days are my Field and Fable, Superior Tech and CraftGossip gigs.
Field and Fable has a site and an Etsy shop, just like Tooaquarius but it’s also got a physical, brick and mortar, building in my small town. In it I sell a variety of local and regional handmade items, some supplies and I teach classes. The studio where all the Tooaquarius goodies are made is in there, too. The building itself is where my partner’s family business used to be and Field and Fable occupies the show room and parts room. My partner works out of the old car bay area (and the “clean” side when needed!)
Superior Tech is my partner’s business where he works mostly doing electronic and computer related work for cars. Occasionally I get to help out with the online parts of this – helping set up a website, YouTube channel and other things right now – or work on computers or pass parts for repairs. Our busy seasons dovetail nicely so I can help when he’s at his craziest.
And finally I’ve been the polymer clay editor for CraftGossip for a few years. There, I get the chance to show off what the community is working on, promote places and tools for clayers and generally see all the very cool things Polymer Clay can do.
Do you guys find yourselves creatively doing 5 things at once sometimes?
One of my pushes for this year is to plant new seeds – I meant it both metaphorically and literally. One of those seeds was supposed to be a collaborative selling site and Etsy shop. Turns out there will also be a brick and mortar component to it. That will be Field and Fable, a separate entity from Tooaquarius. I’m sloooowly working on the site and the shops for it all. The step by step thing.
Field and Fable will have a downtown storefront as well as an online presence. The shop will focus on maker work – fine art, upcycled creations, local craft, supplies for it all and a learning space. Tooaquarius beads and niftiness will be present of course as well as work from many others. I will probably move a portion of my studio there to keep making work.