This week we’re talking to Mandy Holwell from Folksy shop Hollowbourne
Could you describe your shop?
This is me! I make things I like and hope someone else is on the same wavelength, my folksy shop reflects my personality and eclectic interests. I can be a bit fluffy at times, hence the silly/cute animals , I like to read science fiction and fantasy hence the robots and dragons. I love the pre raphaelite/arts and crafts/gothic revival period hence the more serious metal work. I’m a born doodler,these are doodles made from metal. I make what takes my fancy on any particular day,with no regard for fashion or conformity. I see my work as small pieces of art that happen to be wearable and I just want people to smile when they see my work.
Who does your Folksy shop appeal to?
Everyone I hope. People who appreciate owning something unusual and handmade, who have a sense of humour, and would like to have an original piece of art .
Is this your day job?
Part of me wishes it was, but I would not like to have to make dozens of the same thing. At that point it can cease being a pleasure and become more like factory work. So I work part time selling central heating boilers to make ends meet. It’s just bigger pieces of metalwork!
Have you been into craft and the handmade lifestyle for long?
I did a degree in silversmithing and jewellery at Loughborough in the early 1980s, so yes, I suppose so. I used to do craft fairs but ended up in a full time job with no time to make jewellery to sell. So for years I just made things for presants and my own amusement. The “crafts and the handmade lifestyle” was not a conscious choice, my family are all creative, there are 4 of us selling on Folksy. The Need ( with a capital N ) to handmake runs strongly in my family. We all paint,sew,knit,or make stuff fom wood, metal etc.You name it, someone in my family can probably do/make it! I rarely buy
anything if I think I can make it myself.
Where do you promote your shop?
Almost nowhere. I have a facebook page as Hollowbourne and as Mandy Hollowell and an underused blog, self promotion is something I’ve never
been good at. I have my own Hollowbourne website where my work appears first, and I sell on Etsy and Dawanda as well as Folksy.
Do you have plans to expand your business in the future?
No I have no plans for world domination……..I would like to sell more but would not want to expand to the point where I was having to pay
someone to make for me.
What advice would you give to someone thinking about opening up a shop here on Folksy?
Go for it, you may need to experiment a bit to find your own particular niche, try to make something totaly original and true to your own
We’d love to hear your comments!
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