Monday, April 6, 2009
Occasionally I come across an Etsy shop that has soooo many items I'd like to own that I just can't stand it. Les Petites Choses (French for the little things) is one of those shops. These colorful felt creations are each one more delightful than the next. Here are some excerpts from my interview with the shop proprietor, Sophie Markus...
Tell us a little about yourself.
I live in France, near Paris, with my husband and 3 children. When all are gone, I go to my little corner to create “petites choses”, little things in bright colors! I am French and American, and had lived most of my adult life in beautiful San Diego til our move here last summer.
What is your art/craft background?
I like to play with colors, and have always done so, with watercolors, acrylic and oil paints and as a graphic artist, in the video games industry! I see color first, shapes and forms afterward.
How long have you been creating with felt?
I discovered handmade felt on a trip to NY 6 years ago, and with a friend of mine who’s a wonderful wet felt artist.
What is it that you like about working with felt?
The day I received the Nepalese handmade felt I have used since then, I was ecstatic with its texture and the richness of colors! It allows for endless creativity, because of its thickness, and is a durable material. Every batch is different from the previous one, in the intensity of color, and also in thickness, allowing for different uses, the thickest are great for purses and pouches ,the thinner ones for flowers or book covers…. My favorite is the super thick one, when the fibers are very dense, it then becomes incredibly luxurious, and still very earthy!
What inspires you to create?
I draw my inspiration from walks in the forest right out my door, and from gazing at the sky, from fairy tales, and all the things I loved as a child, like finding a pretty stone and keep it in a little pocket forever, or the thrill of having a little purse of my own! I also get inspired by the Hayao Miyazaki movies, with their love and reference for Nature, also by Klimt and Bonnard paintings , and the music I listen while working, which carries me …
What has your Etsy experience been?
I have sold on etsy for 2 years, and what I love the most is the international aspect, sending my creations all over the world, and hearing about the places they are traveling to…I have been blessed with really kind customers, and feel very honored when chosen for gifts!
Do you sell anywhere other than Etsy?
Other than Etsy, I also sometimes sell at local craft fairs, which are also a thrill, since you see people’s reaction to what you make in real time!
What is your favorite piece?
My favorite piece is the turquoise bird pouch in my avatar…it came on its own in my hands: sometimes it happens, it is the magic or the grace of making something, it flows without having to think, and comes without a struggle, just flowing between your fingers: priceless moments! I’m glad it went to a good home, to a felt artist in San Diego!
Thanks for sharing Sophie!
Posted by Wendy Martin at 7:57 PM