We love Instagram! It’s a fact. It allows us to preserve moments of our day and share it with our friends and family. (We’re also a little obsessed with hashtags, #seriouslywhatsfunnierthanahashtag #didyouseethatjimmyandjustinskit).
One of the most incredible things that Instagram has done is created a new community. I have been able to connect with other women just like myself – creative crafters, working moms, scrapbookers, and washi tape lovers! One of these amazing women is Margot Miller. This friendship wasn’t totally random - Margot is married to my friend Tristan, who I used to work with years ago on the one and only Tony Danza Show – but if it wasn’t for Instagram I doubt we would have met. Margot & I started following each other and became insta-friends! (pun intended). When we got together in person for dinner, I felt like I had known her for years!! Margot is one of those people who make everyone around them happier. She is a great friend, wife, aunt, and an incredibly talented illustrator. She uses a collage technique that is easily recognizable as her own. Just as Instagram has introduced us to a whole new group of people, Margot has introduced us to so many things we now love – everything A Beautiful Mess (the blog, Emma, Elsie, their apps, their books), E-Courses, and now a Blog Hop!
We were honored that she chose us to be a part of it. For those of you who don’t know (aka – us before we got Margot’s email) a “Blog Hop” starts with one person who profiles two other people that inspire them and answers a couple questions about themself. Those people then link back to the first person, answer the same questions, and profile two more people. The cycle continues. You can follow the chain back and find some pretty incredible people.
So here it goes…
You can find Margot’s post HERE!! Her creative process is very inspiring and knowing how she operates simply made me appreciate her work that much more. Below are some of my favorite pieces she has created. Visit her website HERE.
Questions & My Answers:
1. What are you writing/working on?
Businesswise - I am currently working on opening my Etsy shop. You can of course buy my cards right here, but having a store on Etsy has been a goal of mine for a long time now. I love everything about Etsy and the community of makers it has built.
Creatively – I am working on a Project Life Mini-Album. I have absolutely loved the idea of Project Life since I first discovered it via Instagram!! It is basically a more achievable way to scrapbook that consists of sliding photos and decorative cards into clear photo pockets!! The idea is to do a little each week and at the end of your album you have a beautiful, complete picture of your life. After thinking I could do this while taking care of an infant, I quickly came to the conclusion that it just wasn’t going to happen. So, instead of getting down on myself, I took some great advice – “Just Start”!! We’ve been making an album this summer!! It’s tons of fun and I can’t wait to share the completed album!
2. How does your work differ from others in your genre?
I would say our greeting cards are different from others because they combine photography, clever sayings, and a handmade aesthetic. I take all the photos myself so they are unique to my point of view. I use a bleaching technique to alter the edges and give the image a border. I type the sayings on an antique typewriter we found at a flea market in Brimfield, Massachusetts and affix it to the photography. I then scan and reprint the photo. Each photo is hand-mounted to a brightly colored piece of card stock. I truly enjoy this method. Using my hands to type, cut, bleach, and glue allows me to fully express myself creatively. Coming up with the sayings and daydreaming of our next card is one of my favorite things to do. Mailing our handmade cards to friends and hearing their happiness when it arrives makes the whole process completely gratifying.
3. Why do you create?
I create because it fills my soul with happiness!! Ok, that’s a little cheesy, but I do create because it truly brings me joy. I love using my hands and I love zoning out. It’s a moment to escape from the busyness of life and just enjoy making things. Whether I’m making a new greeting card, sewing Halloween costumes for my kids, or scrapbooking memories, it all makes me feel fulfilled.
4. How does your creative process work?
My creative process is ongoing. It pretty much never stops. I have several notebooks filled with card idea, DIY projects, and blog topics. Writing it on paper helps me not only execute what is flying through my brain, but it allows me to think clearly. When it comes to my greeting cards I often write the same saying several times. Every so often I take all those ideas in the many notebooks and compile them in an excel document. (fun fact: I used to be the Script Supervisor of The Rachael Ray show and consider myself The Queen of Excel). As a team, we then brainstorm what photo will best convey the saying. Sometimes we do this at a lunch meeting or on long car rides! I find that we are very creative while driving together. Next, I make a plan to take the photograph. Sometimes that means buying props and setting up a photo shoot. Other times it means taking a work field trip. While this is generally my process, sometimes it works out the other way. I always have a camera on me and many times I see something and think “that will make a great card.” I snap the photo and think of the wording later. One of our best sellers was created that way. After an afternoon photo shoot, I treated the team to ice cream cones from a Brooklyn ice cream truck. The cone and sprinkles were almost perfect. I had Chad hold it up in the sky so I could see the top of the trees and get a great depth of field. That photo was taken in pure happiness and I believe you can feel it in the end product. That card just makes people happy!!
Two Creative People Who Inspire Me:
We met Queenie Best at The National Stationery Show! She found us through Instagram (there it is again – connecting people) and introduced herself. Queenie is from Canada and makes THE cutest cards. They feature adorable cartoons with word bubbles and captions that make you chuckle. In addition to her greeting cards, she also produces key chains, buttons, tote bags, and notebooks. Plus, she has a Society 6 store where you can buy even more fun products with her illustrations on them – including baby onesies. She’s got her brand down!! Check out her site HERE and follow her on Instagram HERE.
Lindsey Warriner is also a new friend from The National Stationery Show, but it turns out we also went to the same college (Go, Emerson!!). We met at a cocktail mixer, so we got a glimpse of her humor via her charming accent and sly jokes before we saw her work. The next day we stopped at her booth before the show opened. Her cards are Lindsey personified. It was almost like we were having another conversation – laughing out loud once again!! She uses great colors and I’m looking forward to finding out her creative process!! Check out her website HERE.
Alright, girls – it’s your turn!! Consider this Blog hopped!!