My interview with SiriusFun from Etsy

Today I have a special treat for you, one of my favorite shops has agreed to do an interview with me! Meet Sheila from SiriusFun on Etsy, her shop is FULL of beautiful handmade gift tags that will add that special touch to any gift!

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1. Can you tell us a bit about yourself and your shop.
I am Sheila Krook, owner of SiriusFun on Etsy! I am an animal lover, a fan of nature, gems, glass and paper, rubber stamping, disaster movies, mysteries, reading, Twilight Moms, travel and seeing new sights, ! Lots more too! 🙂 I sell handmade paper tags, glass magnets, earrings, scrapbook embellishments, stickers/envelopeseals, cards, shelves, and occasionally some vintage! Did I mention I love glass? I am addicted to beads and to making earrings! Last winter I made 400 pair!

2. What inspired you to open your shop?
My daughter is an artist and has a shop on Etsy, EarthStarStudios, and she encouraged me to sell some of my creations on Etsy. I also wanted a creative outlet as well as a way to supplement my income from my day job which is in human services (think underpaid!!!).

3. Besides designing & creating things, what do you do?

I work as a Program Coordinator at the local Developmental Achievement Center which serves mentally and physically disabled adults. We used to have a “Seniors” program for the elderly clientele which I created and ran, but most of them have died or retired. As Program Coordinator I have 16 consumers whose programs I am responsible for at the DAC plus I supervise staff and communicate with the residential providers, case managers and families of our clients. It is a very challenging , mentally, physically and emotionally draining job that I will not be physically able to do much longer.

4. Where, who or what does your influence come from?
My influences are many! When I first began to notice digital designs on Etsy I found Lindamayk who specializes in vintage designs with a French flair! I was hooked immediately and began to create vintage tags. I love history, beauty, nature, animals, humor, books, movies, and so much more! I also am so very inspired by the creations of others on Etsy! I have only seen a fraction of the many shops here, and they always inspire me! Vintage, variety and vibrant color is my motto!!!

5. What inspires you to be creative?
Oops I guess I answered this question in number 4! I am influenced by my interests, visual beauty, exotic locales and activities, my grandchildren, nature and so much more!

6. How do you get out of a creative rut?
I try doing something else that is creative in a different way! When I get tired of making tags I might crochet or stamp. I love making earrings, but get very little time to do it now.

7. When did you first discover that you were or wanted to be an artist?

I have been crafting since I was a child. At 6 I learned embroidery, and tried knitting and crocheting. I was always drawing and creating pictures with lots of sparkle and shine! Glitter and shiny stars! Later on in life I started doing counted cross stitch and felt like that was similar to painting but with floss and fabric. I have tried making candles, molded candies, sewing and decoupage and love scrapbooking! I take a tremendous amount of photos! My parents were very creative and they encouraged me to be as well. My mother quilted by hand, crocheted, knitted, did needlepoint and counted cross stitch and professional level sewing while my father was a photographer who had his own darkroom and wood shop. My paternal grandfather was a painter and my paternal grandmother embroidered, was a master gardener and cook! My maternal grandmother embroidered, tatted, sewed, quilted, crocheted and baked while my maternal grandfather was a poet and tried painting and other crafts.

8. Can you describe your creative process for us?
I work from impulse and intuition. When I find a design that I find visually interesting and pleasing I want to work with it. When I see beads of glass or stone that I love, I immediately think of a design that I could create with them.Learning as you work by trial and error is usually what happens for me! “)

9. Where do you see or want your shop to be this time next year?
I would love to be able to participate in more craft shows throughout my area, I would love to be able to double the number of sales made each month and eventually I would very much love to create and sell full time on Etsy and/or other venues and work from home!

10. What is your best advice to newbie Etesian’s just opening their shops?

My advice to new Etsians would be to study shops that you like . Don’t copy other’s work, but see how the successful stores take photos, display their items, promote their items etc. Learn by reading the forums, join a wonderful supportive team like Statteam! Never be afraid to ask for help or advice since most of the Etsy artists and shop owners are more than willing to help and give excellent advice! Etsy is all about community and accomplishing great things as a group!

11. Which of your artwork pieces is your favorite?

I like all my listed items, and so many more that aren’t listed! I only sell things that I personally like!

12. Is there an artist you relate to?

I feel that I can relate in some way to most artists.

13. What would you call your style?
I would call my style “eclectic” since I like vintage, gothic, modern, glam, punk, impressionist etc.

14. How do you feel when people interpret your artwork differently?
I haven’t really had that problem thus far! 🙂

15. What is the most challenging part of being a shop owner on Etsy?

Trying to get views from potential customers!

16. What advice do you have for aspiring artists?

Follow your heart and your desires and work in whatever medium you love!!!
If you sincerely love what you create, then others will too! Your audience may be small at first but continue to create! If you build it they will come!

17. Where else can we find you on the internet besides Etsy?

I have a facebook site which is under the name of Sirius Krook.

18. Do you have any specials or coupon codes for your Etsy shop?
When I participate in BNS treasuries I use the coupon BNS10 for 10% off anything in the shop! I also have sales occasionally and I will create special coupon codes for them!

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