Next up in our ‘Meet the Maker’ series is Imants who runs his Etsy shop Immys Woodcraft making high quality, practical and unique woodcraft from his Cardiff workshop. You can find Imants at our Etsy Made Local event at the Bierkeller in Cardiff on Sunday 3rd December.
Other than Etsy where else can we find your work?
Because my items are unique, on-line selling is not always practical (fresh entry for each item) so I show a range of items on my web site and recommend that people contact me so I can make specifically for them (mini-commissions that are personal). I attend a range of craft fairs and find them very useful to speak with people directly.
Tell me about some of the people you’ve met while working on your business.
The people at Penderyn Welsh Whisky spring to mind – I met them and was able to get some
old barrel wood that they can no-longer use that I convert into a range of pens. The grain in the wood,
the richness of colour, and occasional whisky smells when working the wood are superb.
I’ve also met some fantastic customers who have seen an item on my stall, appreciated that it
was unique and simply had to buy – some have then gone on to commission other pieces.
Who do you admire in your industry?
Artists that have been able to get a name established and attract premium prices.
We live in such a mass produced, buy-it- now world, why should we continue to buy handmade?
It’s the only way to have an item that was probably made for you that is valued for more than its cost price alone. I find people speaking of really looking after an item I’ve made for them and valuing the unique features in the wood grain, the colours and / or the make. I wish more people had the time, in this busy world, to stop and appreciate handmade quality.
When do you feel the most creative?
When I have a piece of wood on the lathe and whilst I have some idea of the internal structure,
I don’t know what it’s going to find inside.
What is your most memorable sale?
A lady who came to my stall, had just had her first paycheque, was intending to splash out on a
new pair of designer shoes, but bought a £200 mixed wood bowl from me because she loved it
more than mass produced shoes.
What are your top gifts for men?
- Penderyn barrel wood cufflinks
- Wooden fountain / rollerball pen
- Penderyn whisky wood – bullet pens (you have to see one of these to appreciate them)
What are you top gifts for women?
- Fine grain wooden pen
- Mixed wood earrings and jewellery
And finally, for fun, Christmas tree, real or fake?
Real, real, real
You can find Imants at our Etsy Made Local event on the 3rd December or in the following places.