Every Wednesday The Folksy Blog will be finding out a little bit more about one of our sellers in this new series called ‘Shop Talk’. This week we’re talking to Sami Teasdale from Folksy shop ‘Teasemade’
“Teasemade – Intricate hand stitched treats”
Teasemade is a real treat. Unique and quirky pieces, that perfectly capture a love for crafting. Sami’s photography shows off the intricate hand stitching of her pieces so well, giving customers no doubt to the quality of her pieces. The gingham background used gives a consistent scale to all of the pieces, and more importantly makes Sami’s listings instantly recognisable, especially as she has used the same gingham to carefully embroider her banner too, great shop branding!
Could you describe your shop?
Intricate hand-stitched jewellery treats using a treasure trove of delicate fabric prints and charms. As well as the simplistic beauty of more classic Liberty prints, I like to collect and use unusual quirky patterns and colour ways (not exclusively Liberty), so there’s often limited edition treats to be found.
Who does your Folksy shop appeal to?
I’ve found specific products interestingly appeal to different people, gentlemen tend to buy love token jewellery, crafty types like the craft/tea themed items and the younger market like the quirkier prints. Teasemade especially appeals to those with an appreciation of textiles both young and the young at heart, and most certainly those bitten by the Liberty bug.
Is this your day job?
It is indeed, but this has been a fairly recent turn of events. I used to be a Design and Technology/Art Teacher which was very demanding but I loved it, after some health challenges I needed to rethink my lifestyle and working habits. During these challenges stitching became my blissful escape and my sanity, it is from this that teasemade has really blossomed.
Have you been into craft and the handmade lifestyle for long?
Handmade is in my genes. I’m very lucky to be able to turn my hand to most things crafty and was brought up wearing the most beautiful handmade clothes made by my lovely mum. I blame her early influence for never being satisfied with regular shop bought items, always needing to embellish or refashion them, and my crazy attention to detail! I studied Fine Art Sculpture which was non-textile based. I love all materials and I’m addicted to the process of making and learning but it all gets rather tricky to make big messy things once you leave University, I’d like several dream studios one day.
When you’re not selling online where do you promote and sell your stock?
Due to the subtle tactile qualities of my jewellery they suit bricks and mortar shops of a boutique/handmade nature. As well as supplying locally in South London I use social networking such a Twitter, Facebook. I also get commissions through recommendation and word of mouth.
Do you have plans to expand your business in the future?
I’d like to gradually supply to more retail outlets. I have a few in the pipe line and others I have my eye on, but mainly the next idea is to expand into my textile art work more, now that my jewellery is established. Ideally in the future I’d love a lifestyle balance that included a bit of teaching in the form of workshops as well as making my own work.
Teasmade has a wonderful blog where you can see her work in progress, and find out more about what goes into each of her pieces.
What advice would you give to someone thinking about opening up a shop here on Folksy?
I’ve found social networking really valuable not only as a promotional tool to get my work seen but as a way of meeting fellow designers, sharing new opportunities and top creative tips. I use Twitter, Facebook, Blog about my makings and share my photos on Flickr, all of which are fantastic ways to get instant feedback and support, as well as give feedback to others. There’s a whole lot of love to be had! It can feel a little lonely at the start so if you have the time, network all you can, or find one that suits you. Another fun way to meet people and make connections is craft swaps so keep an eye out for those.
We’d love to hear your comments!