I sat down for an interview with Carissa Black. Here is what we talked about. Be sure to visit Carissa at all her links and if your ever in Connecticut, visit the shops who sell Carissa's items.
Andrea: What region do you live in?
Carissa : I live in Connecticut, so the East Coast.
Andrea: What kind of items do you create?
Carissa: I create handbags and all of the accessories to go with them.
Andrea: How long have you been creating?
Carissa: I have been creating "officially" for about 5 years now. I have always loved designing and sewing.
Andrea: What or Who are your creative influences?Carissa: I find that the artists on etsy really inspire me. There is so much creativity. It really makes me push myself. I also really love fabric. It is fun to look at a design or color and imagine all of the wonderful things it could become.
Andrea: Do you work outside of the home/studio?
Carissa: I work out of my home. I would love to have my own studio some day.
Andrea: If you could be in someone else's studio or kitchen, whose would that be?
Carissa: There was an etsy artist on the Martha Show a year or two back who had a one room studio in the cutest little house. It looked like a playhouse, but was big enough for all of her things. It was whimsical, fun, inspiring, functional, and right in her own backyard.
Andrea: Where do you see yourself in 5 years? What are your goals with your business?
Carissa: In 5 years I want Carissa Black to be a household name. We can all dream can't we? No really I just hope that I still love creating and doing what I do.
Andrea: Do you sell wholesale?
Carissa: Yes, I do wholesale and consignment.
Andrea: Where else can your products be found (name B&M stores or internet urls, including your own)?
Carissa: Here are a list of shops where you can find me at.
My online shop at www.gardencris27.etsy.com
I also sell at the following boutiques:
Yummy Goods in Cape Cod, Massachusetts http://www.yummygoods.com/
Bella Boutique in Alaska http://www.shop-bella.com/
Indigo Lily Co. in Cochester CT http://www.indigolilycompany.com/
Piper Maypop in Farmington CT http://pipermaypop.blogspot.com/
A Whole Lotta Bags in Bangor Maine http://www.awholelottabags.com/
Andrea: Are you a member of any organizations or have any affiliations?
Carissa: Of course I belong to Fabulous Artistic Moms. I also belong to the Connecticut Etsy Street Team.
Andrea: What is your education as it pertains to your craft?
Carissa: I haven't had any formal training, except for high school home economics. All of my sewing has been self taught.
Andrea: What is your favorite part of creating handmade items?
Carissa: I love to have an outlet to express myself. It is just plain fun!