The Rhode Island Etsy Street Team is doing a virtual cross country trip, featuring an Etsy seller from each state. We are calling it our Etsy "Rhode" trip.
Our first interviewee hails from the lovely state of Maine, and her work, simply put, rocks! Her name is Lindsay Duranceau, she's 22, and her shop is filled with a really interesting mix of beautifully made items, from masquerade masks to Christmas ornaments.
HT: Tell us a little about yourself.
LD: My name is Lindsay, I'm 22 years old, I like pretty things, cute things, funky things, vintage things and just anything that is visually appealing to me. My current day job (which often stretches into evenings and nights) is a sales associate for a major retailer. I've always been a crafty person. One of my favorite things to do as a wee one was color in coloring books and make little things to give to family members, which could range from a pipe cleaner flower to a decorated rock. In high school, I had an amazing art teacher who really gave me the idea and encouragement to start becoming more serious about the things I made. She gave me the idea to start selling my creations to the masses. In the spring, I stumbled upon the wonderful world of Etsy and now here I am.
HT: Your shop has an eclectic mix of items. How do you decide what you are going to make next?
LD: Well, my whole philosophy on creating things is that I have to feel it to make it. I'm very much a perfectionist and if I'm making something and I don't like it as I making it, I'll make something else. I have to like what I make, I feel if I don't like it, why should anybody else like it? So, when I sit down at my crafty station, I take a look at the supplies I have readily available, ask myself what I feel like making and then I make it. I'm a Gemini, so I get bored often, which is why you'll find an eclectic mix in my shop. I don't like making the same things back to back or again and again and if I do make similar items, usually the look or style of the items will differ. I like variety and experimenting...that's what makes me feel it. Plus, I'm big into scrapbooking, which strongly influences my other crafts, and in the scrapbooking world, it's so fast paced and products and styles change so quickly, that I'm always finding new inspirations and ideas I want to implement or new products that I want to try. You'll often see this in my goods.
LD: I started making my Masquerade Masks in high school. One of the assignments for my aforementioned art teacher's classes, was to make a mask. I liked it so much, she let me take home one of her plaster molds after the class finished and I started making them for fun after that. I found that I could do so much with them and make each one so unique that I really enjoyed the process. It may sound crazy, but on 98% of my masks, each sequin in glued individually. It became not only a fun process for me, but a therapeutic one as well.
HT: What are your favorite materials? Where do you find your materials?
LD: As with the things I make, I often like to mix up the materials I use, so it depends on the week that you ask me what my favorites would be. It's that Gemini thing again! Basically what I like to say is that if it can be used in scrapbooking, I like it. Really, I like all kinds of things...non-traditional and traditional, new and vintage. Some funky or pretty patterned paper is always a must. Lately, I've been into buttons, especially vintage ones, and lace trim. I always love using notebook paper and fringe too. I get my materials from everywhere. Craft stores, online stores, flea markets, Etsy...one of my favorite places to get the previously mentioned lace trim is a shop right here on Etsy, One Ripe Peach. Ellen from One Ripe Peach always stocks the most lovely things!
HT: How did you hear about Etsy?
LD: I actually kind of stumbled upon Etsy, through the scrapbooking world of course. Allison Kreft from Hambly Screen Prints had done a post on her blog about selling her glass pendants in her Etsy shop and curious me, I went to check them out. I navigated around Etsy a bit more and discovered that it wasn't just for jewelry and that it seemed simple enough that anyone could sell their wonderful creations. So, I signed up that night.
HT: What is your favorite aspect of Etsy?
LD: I really don't have one favorite aspect of Etsy, I love all things about it. I love that I can sell my stuff and I can buy cool things and I can chat with other Etsians in the forums. I just adore having a place I can be my creative self and hopefully share that with others, as others share it with me.
HT: Have you always lived in Maine? What about your state inspires you? What are some quirks unique to your state?
LD: I have always lived in Maine. Lived in the same city since I was born. I live in Southern Maine, which is far different from the rest of Maine. What I love about living in the area that I live in is that it's not that far from Boston, so I've got the major city close by, but at the same time, it's only a 15-20 minutes drive to the ocean and if you're into camping and outdoor activities, you can drive a bit north, and you have all sorts of places geared towards that type of stuff from campgrounds to state parks to vast wilderness and mountains and lakes. You've got all sorts of things all around you, so there is something for everyone and it's really all within a few hours drive. Plus, the sun rises here first out of the entire US, and the traffic isn't horrible...yet. The state is growing at a fast pace, so if you ask me that in a few years time, I may have a different answer!
HT: Do you have a personal favorite piece in your shop? If so, what makes it your favorite?
LD: As I said before, I have to like everything I make, so I do like it all. If I had to pick a favorite piece, right now I'm really loving my Button Wreath ornaments. I made one for myself that I posted on my blog that people really seemed to love, so I figured I should make more and give people the chance to get one of their very own to make their Christmas trees this year just a little bit cuter.
HT: Do you know where Rhode Island is, and have you ever visited?
LD: I do know where Rhode Island is, it's just on the other side of Massachusetts and it's probably a 4 hours drive from where I live. I have been there once, but it was back when I was in middle school. My Mother and I were big hockey fans back then and we went down to see our local team play the Providence Bruins. Unfortunately, we arrived in the evening and left right after the game and I slept the way there, so I don't really recall much of the state itself, but the arena was nice!
HT: Being the holiday season, what are you asking for this Christmas?
LD: On my Christmas list this year, I have lots of items from other Etsy shops. There is so much good stuff that people are making on there and it's incredible! I also have lots of crafty supplies and this really cute bowling bag by Jay McCarroll of Project Runway fame! But at the same time, and I know this is going to sound cliche and a bit corny, but it's really all about the togetherness and showing appreciation to those that you love and that's what really makes Christmas time special and that's the best gift of all!
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