Tuesday, October 23, 2012

Etsy Designer Moe, Sew Moe

   What a beautiful Tuesday morning. I woke up to find my city covered in a layer of thick fresh snow, the sound of my furnaces and me snuggled up in some cozy flannel sheet. Perfect. But even more delightful was getting up knowing I get to share with you guys another amazing Etsy designer whose works I quite adore.  Especially some of her unique hoody designs. May I introduce to you guys Moe, Sew Moe. She was even gracious enough to spend some time answering a few questions for this feature and now I get to pass on a little of her journey and experience with design.

So check out her beautiful and creative designs on her Etsy shop, Sew Moe  and you can also follow her on her Facebook page.
1) ) First just tell us about yourself?
    I live and love in the sleepy mountain town of Asheville, North Carolina. My best friend and dog of almost 13 years, mr. dakota delmar, takes a walk with me every morning. The walks are getting slower paced but its our ritual all the same! I know what streets smell the best because of how long it takes us. Perhaps this information will prove to be useful one day?? Afterwards, I get to ride my bike to work (long way or shortcut...how nice is it today?) I cross over a river and ride along the railroad tracks to my spacious warehouse studio tucked in the River Arts District. I would say its cozy, but its rather freezing in the winter so luckily there aren't many witnesses to my "stylish" sense of layering by the end of each winter. It seems like I spend most of my time studio-side, so having a lot of space has made a huge difference in my daily work attitude. I enjoy coming home to my special man friend and the previously mentioned mr. dd...and when things aren't as domesticated, I thoroughly enjoy good beer and pizza with friends. And yes, sometimes we teach each other new ways to braid our hair or talk too much about a pair of shoes. Life is excellent.

2) Are you full time with your Etsy shop? If so what point in your life where you able to commit this as your day job?
    I'm blessed to have sew moe as my full time gig. Mostly through etsy, but also via local commissions and the occasional craft fair. I'm proud to be able to support myself from my passion. I paid my dues with a long job history of full time retail, and then the two-job life (corporate retail + dream job). I went part time in 2008 and finally (finally!!) took the plunge barely less than a year ago to quit my day job and all its "security". Honestly, I wish I'd done it sooner, because this year has been pleasantly exciting and I've grown so much as a designer. I can now embrace my title fully and that is very, very exciting!
3) When you started your Etsy shop what were some challenges you faced?
    When I first started, my biggest mistake was underpricing myself and my time. Its hard to resist offering the best deal possible...everyone loves a good deal! It took me awhile to honor the fact that a quality made garment will last for years and years to come--and that is always a much better deal than the $20 piece that falls apart after a few wears. I had to decide what I wanted to be known for--high quality or cheap prices--as unfortunately those two things do not come hand in hand. At the end of the day, I'm proud of my workmanship and know that my clients are too.
4) Right now what are your most popular items?
    My hoodies are definitely my top sellers. Especially now that I've added a nursing function to the design. As unpleasant as it can be to work with fleece all summer long in an un-conditioned studio space, I will gladly take it. I for one, am very thankful that its always winter somewhere.

5) What inspires you to create new items?
    As a designer I feel compelled to make a new collection twice a year. As much as I love having a best seller, nothing compares to making something for the very first time. Even if some of the seams are crooked or a section looks wonky--a first time piece always trumps something you can make with your eyes closed. My closet is full of these pieces--the prototypes and first-times that aren't made well enough to sell, but they symbolize a lot more to me. They document the little milestones along the way, and I'm quite fond of them for that reason.

1 comment:

Unknown said...

nice interview.. :)
Irene Wibowo