Meet The Maker – Maia and The Wildflower and Nelly’s Treasures

Maia and The Wildflower

 

IMG_20191029_135701_990 - Jane - Maia and the WildflowerOur penultimate Meet The Maker for 2019 brings two of our most popular stallholders; bringing us a little ray of sunlight during this very wintery November. Our first maker is resin cast maker Jane of Maia and The Wildflower. With a sprinkling of sunshine in every creation, we are certain you’ll find more than a few favourites at her stall this year. 

 

 

 

Tell us a little more about yourself…

I’m Jane, I live with my partner, Rich, of 13 years and our 7 year old daughter who is called Maia. I’ve been running my shop for around 2.5 years, and this all started because I wanted to keep the flowers my daughter picked for me and so set out to learn about preserving flowers in resin. I’m also a bit of a plant addict! My home is filling up nicely.

20191101_184536 - Jane - Maia and the WildflowerI create jewellery and home decor pieces with resin and real flowers, and I honestly love what I do!..I also work as a Carer with the elderly, so it has been a struggle trying to balance everything but I wouldn’t change it for the world.

 

It’s such a wonderful sentiment that Jane has named her business after Maia and her lovely foraging habit of bringing personally chosen botanical gifts. 

 

What inspires your creativity or craft? 

I love all of the wonderful colours in nature, it always inspires me and I love to create little woodland scenes in my pieces!

It’s easy to see that Jane truly take pride and joy in what she creates, we can imagine ourselves getting lost among the wildflowers and colours of her products. 

20191027_185627 - Jane - Maia and the WildflowerWe wanted to know a little more insight into the skills and techniques needed to create such playful designs:

Patience! Anyone can learn to use resin, but be prepared to experiment and to also fail. There are always lots of lessons in the failed attempts. It’s such a fun craft to learn and very addictive.

 

Where did it all begin and where do you see yourself going?

I started making jewellery and really small items, with lots of failed attempts along the way. I concentrate now mainly on one of a kind pieces for your home, and this is where my heart is. I’ve also just started on my first resin table, which will be finished very soon. I’d love to get to a point where my pieces are recognised as my own.

IMG_20191101_151751_915 - Jane - Maia and the WildflowerWe love that Jane has maintained a passion for details and refining her creative skills to create products for the home as well as jewellery. It’s particularly rewarding to hear just how far she has come in the past year:

“I’m learning all the time while business is growing, but one achievement I’m pleased with is winning an SBS award for Small Business Sunday on twitter with Theo Paphitis. I’ll get to meet him early next year to collect my certificate! Yay!”

 

What is your favourite thing about EML? 

Getting to be around lots of other creatives! I don’t get out often now with 2 jobs on the go!

Jane will be kept busy all day with customers looking at her work in wonder, but at the top of Janes wish list this year is Kindred Kraft by Louise. We love Louise’s Christmas decorations and we’re delighted to hear that these two makers have become great friends over the years.

IMG_20190729_131738_211 - Jane - Maia and the WildflowerOne of Janes favourite products to make is her wall hangings, which is great for us as these are definitely making our wish lists this year. 

When Jane’s not busy receiving flowering gifts from Maia, casting resin or working as a carer she loves to grab a little peace and quiet in book with a good audio book and some knitting. 

In the meantime head over to her Etsy Page for more wonderful products or find her posts on Instagram and Facebook.

 

 

Nelly’s Treasures

 

DD3F505B-A26D-4999-9BA5-CD243FD6A4E5 - Helen SmithOur second maker is one of our favourites and ever so colourful Helen of Nelly’s Treasures. A sure-fire way to add a little joy and brightness to your home or nursery. Whether by adding a few hand-printed illustrations, cushions or banners, we’re certain you’ll find a little happiness in this corner of Etsy Made Local. 

“Hi I’m Helen, I’m 37 and live in Dinas Powys with my husband and our 2 kids – Felix and Daphne. I grew up here and love living by the sea. I read a lot, mostly sci-fi and fantasy and I love watching indie films too. I run Nelly’s Treasures which is a children’s interior brand and have done for about 5ish years now. I make cushions, textiles and prints to add pops of colour to little one’s rooms.”

 

We love Helen’s playful use of colours and animals to add a little adventure to children’s rooms. We were curious about her design process and wanted to know more:

 

IMG_5022 - Helen Smith“I have quite a few different skills that I utilise really. I draw and design my creations, I start drawing in my sketchbook or using my iPad. Designs are then moved into photoshop and organised into files to send to the printers. I get all my fabric printed by a small business in Kent. I then sew up all my fabric into cushions, flags and playmats. I enjoy having lots of different parts to the process, I don’t get bored with it at all then and each day is different.”

 

It’s great to hear that Helen has made a streamlined process to her designs and we’re even happier to hear she’s kept the printing to a small business in the UK. Having such a variety of products is a wonderful way of keeping the creativity flowing whilst maintaining the passion and drive to create such wonderful items. We’re big fans of her playmats and banners this year.

 

IMG_4992 - Helen SmithWhat inspires your creativity or craft? 

Colour is a big influence on me and my creativity like to research colour trends and put together mood boards. My latest collection has been influenced by Eastern European folk art. I like exploring different cultures for designs cues.

Helen’s had a bit of a busy year getting her self prepped and planned for bigger markets as well as setting up a home studio. We think she’s doing an incredible job and hopes she’s managed to get a little time to put her feet up:

 

“I had a baby in January, my 2nd child, so I’ve been on Maternity leave for most of the year, it’s been a pretty hectic year for me personally as I also got married in August. I’ve also built a studio in my garden this summer- We were evicted from our home in the Printhaus this year as it’s being knocked down by developers and it made sense with now 2 small children to work from home for a while. Business-wise, I’ve just partaken in Craft Festival Cardiff which was a pretty big show for me which I was really chuffed to be a part of.”

Where did it all begin and where do you see yourself going?

IMG_4977 - Helen SmithIt’s been a gradual progression really. I studied textile design at uni about 15 years ago and then started Nelly’s Treasures about 5 years ago. In that in-between time I was running market stalls and workshops and working out my illustration style, it all just fell into place at the same time. My plan for the next few years is to carry on building the brand, keep designing textiles and just enjoy illustrating too, alongside raising my kids.

 

We love to hear how Helen’s business has grown organically since her time at university, its wonderful to see how nicely it developed along side her creative lifestyle. We can’t wait to see what designs or products she comes up with next.

 

What is your favourite thing about EML? 

I love catching up with lots of local makers. You tend to get to know lots of faces on the Christmas market circuit and lots have become good friends over the years.

IMG_4895 - Helen SmithHelen has truly become part of the CaVEtsy community over the past few years, and we love to catch up with her when we’re selling at other local events throughout the year. It’s even better knowing that at the top of her wishlist this year are vases made by Baked By Lou and some dazzling jewellery from Fizz Goes Pop, not to mention the wonderful creations from In Rainbows for the kids too (two other local makers who will be at this years EML).

As we’ve already mentioned one of our favourites makes from Helen has to be her playmats; but great minds must think alike as its also one of favourites to make – “I think my favourite is the bear design 

When Helens not busy being super-mum or running or creating designs in her new home studio she loves to get out for a refreshing long walk around Cwm George forest. Head over to Nelly’s Treasures Etsy page for more wonderful gift ideas, or scroll over to her Instagram and Facebook for more events and insights.

 

Come join us on the 30th of November, 10 am-5 pm at Cardiff City Hall for Cardiff and Valleys  Creatives 5th Etsy Made Local. For more information head over to our team’s FacebookInstagram and Twitter pages and show your interest on our Facebook event page.

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