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Meet the Maker

Meet The Maker: Sandy Juarez

In this week's Meet the Maker post, we talk to a Maker who has a phenomenal story about taking what life throws at you and turning it around. Sandy is in our Successful Makers' Society and her drawer pulls are GORGEOUS. There are several that I am coveting and trying to decide where I could put them. My office needs a cabinet, so I think they will be going there in the near future. 

Why did you start your handmade business?

I’m 60. This wasn’t my plan, but life happens. My husband and I had a design Center for kitchens and cabinetry for 20 years. Then 2008 came and we never quite recovered. 

Five years ago, this sweet man that I love so much, was diagnosed with Parkinson’s Disease. I need to find a way to take care of us now. It’s my turn to show this man the same love, respect, and devotion he’s always shown me!I

I know I can do this....I have always had a very keen eye for design.

Tell us about your handmade business

I have an Etsy shop where I sell contemporary/modern knobs and pulls. I really like the idea of having one major focus and I love that my knobs are small and relatively light, making packing and postage doable! I am waaaay into my cement knobs. There are 4 styles and I make them all ☺️ They are imperfectly perfect! ❤️

What have been your biggest business challenges?

 Definitely learning the technology!

How did you overcome these challenges?

I am learning by trail and error. I feel like I’ve been going 1step forward and 3 steps back from the beginning.

What do you love about having your own handmade business?

I love the creative process I go through to make my cement knobs. I also LOVELOVELOVE organization because I’m a bit of a OCD freak ☺️

What is the best business advice that you ever received

My daughter told me not to get distracted by shiny things. To keep things small, simple, and manageable and to grow slowly without debt.

My greatest fear is…

That this might not work and I’ve wasted a lot of time and resources. I feel a sense of urgency since I am now responsible for taking care of my husband and I.

What advice would you give yourself 10 years ago?

 Learn everrrrrrrrrrrything you can about technology. You can do anything with that knowledge!

My favorite business tool is:

Anything I can find at the dollar store that I can use as a tool, I do! Like popsicle sticks, mixing bowls, plastic spoons, plastic cups....but probably my favorite is my drill attachment that I use to mix my cement.

 

You can find The Hardware Foundry online. 

 

Meet the Maker: Laura Dixon

Welcome to our new Meet the Maker series! We are features makers just like you. Our first maker is Laura Dixon. Laura makes super awesome wedding bouquets that aren't going to parish. How does she do this? You'll have to read her post below! 

Photo by B-Freed NYC Wedding Photography

Photo by B-Freed NYC Wedding Photography

Why did you start your handmade business?

I was planning my own wedding in 2012 and wanted a unique wedding bouquet that I could keep forever. I am from the UK but was getting married in New York City - I didn't want to throw my bouquet away before I flew home. 

I stumbled upon button bouquets on the internet and thought 'I could make one of those'...a lot of research, practise and patience later and I had! I made my own wedding bouquet from buttons and brooches, incorporating elements of NYC into the bouquet!

I loved making my unique bouquet so much that I wanted to give other brides the opportunity to have one too!

Tell us about your handmade business?

I work with busy brides to help them create a unique, personalised bouquet so that they can rest assured that they will have something precious to carry with them on their wedding day and to treasure forever.

I also make coordinating bridesmaids bouquets, flower girl wands, buttonholes and accessories.

Everything is designed and made by me and is unique to each of my brides.

What have been your biggest business challenges?

My biggest challenge was learning how to make a button bouquet - its tough!

I spend many hours over several weeks perfecting my own technique and now have a unique design which I am very proud of!

What do you love about having your own handmade business?

I love that I can give brides the chance to create their own unique bouquet that is full of their personality. I work with them to design a bouquet that is unique to them and that often includes sentimental touches that reflect their life and relationship (for example one of my brides had a charm with her children footprints added to her bouquet).

I have posted bouquets all over the world and feel so touched that my brides choose to carry something I made with them on their wedding day.

What advice would you give yourself 10 years ago?

Not to worry about what people think and to go with your heart when making important decisions.

Where can we find you online?

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