Inspiration week Day 3 : Maya Donenfeld of maya*made
I am very excited to be interviewing Maya of maya*made. Entering into Maya's blog, flickr or shop is like coming home to a wonderful, peaceful, comforting place where you will be surrounded by simple natural beauty. Maya has really made a huge impact in the crafting world in a very short time yet she remains so humble, approachable and truly genuine. I think that is what I love most about her. So while Maya is on a well deserved vacation with her sweet family I am posting this interview with her.
What inspires you in your creativity?
I find inspiration in many places, from the internet... to nature... to walking down a city street. I try to look at the world through my children's eyes... as if everything is brand new.
If you tried to trace back the series of events that lead to you making things and opening an etsy shop where would it begin?
I've always loved making gifts for friends and family. If I could, I wouldn't sell anything, I'd just give it away. Since that isn't a reality I can afford, selling what I make seems to make sense. A way to support the making habit! It's actually much more than a habit, it's a serious need that I can't seem to satiate. Nor do I want to!
How did you learn your crafting skills?
I don't remember a time when I wasn't making or teaching myself new tricks/techniques.My family taught me to have faith in the abilities of my own two hands and the joys of figuring out how to create things on my own. The library is very important to me, but now the internet has taken center stage. I love looking for tutorials. Everything you could possibly want to learn is now at your fingertips!
I've always sewn and embroidered, but in a "by the seat of my pants" kind of way. It's only been in the last year that I've begun to call myself a sewist. I entered a local contest on clothing deconstruction last year and totally surprised myself by winning. With the prize money, I bought a better sewing machine. My sweet Pfaff machine has changed my life! I love sewing on unexpected materials, but my focus is mostly sustainable and recycled fabric.
Can you describe an environment : time, place and company ( people or pets)
where you feel most creative?
I have a busy household, and the only time it gets quiet is deep in the night. The wee hours are when I tap into some of my best creativity. I admit, I drink a little hot cup of chai right before we put the children to bed. It seems ot have just enough caffeine to get me going, but I do eventually sleep!
What do you have planned 2009?
I have so many ideas that I have to keep writing them all down so I won't lose track. Brainstorming is one of my favorite things to do! I will continue what I've been sharing on my blog: offering ideas for creative parenting and simple living with the seasons. Teaching adults is a joy I never knew as a nursery school teacher, but have discovered through blogging. I'm looking at ways to incorporate that into my life... sewing workshops, craft classes etc. I'd also like to branch out and try new mediums, which will most likely end up in my etsy shop. Linoblock printing is at the top of the list.
What advice or encouragement would you offer another creative person
contemplating taking a big step to open a shop or blog in 2009?
I jumped in, headfirst. I had no idea what I was doing and had never read a blog before last winter.Anyone can do this! I learned as I went, and tried to find my unique voice, while simultaneously observing and taking notes on the bloggers I most admired. I think Flickr is the most important blogging tool I discovered. Not only does it help spread the word about my work, it gives me endless inspiration. It's my window on the creative world. So many deep friendships and valuable connections have been made by establishing and investing time into my photostream and others. If I had to do it all over again, I might start with Flickr and then when my toes were wet, move on to a blog. One last piece of advice for new bloggers or even shop owners. Don't ever hesitate to: comment on other blogs, have Etsy conversations, and reach out to new friends. Make it meaningful to you. It may change your life, or at least how you see the world.
Thanks so much Maya and I hope you come home refreshed from your vacation and that you had a chance to pocket a few stones for a very good cause. I will be back tomorrow with interview #4 with the lovely talented Nicole from Brooklyn, NY.