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Sunday, January 27, 2013

My Interview with Dawn Harrison

I love Etsy! There is so much to see and buy! I love having an online mall at my finger tips! I also, enjoy learning about people and their shops! I found Dawn's Shop and fell in love with it!

My Interview with Dawn Harrison!
What do you sell?
Handmade Jewelry specializing in the Tree of Life Pendant
How did you get started with Etsy?
I was referred by a friend. Whenever I mentioned to someone that I had a store online selling my jewelry the same question always came up . . . Do you sell on Etsy? I had my own website and had been selling on Yardsellr for over a year – but, everyone suggested to succeed I must set up shop on Etsy. I took their advice and here I am.
When did you get interested in making your Art/Craft?
I have always been into crafting. Sewing, crocheting, knitting, drawing, painting, and costume design – mostly the renaissance and Civil War period. It was suggested that I attend an after work gathering to make jewelry with several co-workers and I jumped at the opportunity. I have been making jewelry for several years now. I love it! I discovered the concept of the tree of life pendant on You Tube…once I saw the finished product I was enthralled.
When did you get interested in Vintage items? 
The vintage items that I have made and sold would be the costume design – mostly the renaissance and Civil War period. I started making clothing for our entire family to attend the Renaissance Faires here locally, and it quickly spread to friends and fellow renn fest folks.
Where does your inspiration come from?
My inspirations on the tree of life pendants come from nature. I am surrounded by my beloved trees. As a child I had a favorite tree that I would draw constantly, then I went to Gettysburg, PA with my family for a Civil War reenactment, on that trip I discovered the Gettysburg Witness Tree at Devil’s Den. I was mesmerized by its beauty and shape. I’ve recently had a fellow artist paint the tree on a glass pendant for me. It’s image hangs in my living room and with each tree of life pendant I make I try to recapture the beauty of nature. I have been a camper my entire life and feel so blessed to lie under a tree and dream. Mother Nature has blessed us with so much beauty…nature is my inspiration.
Who taught you or how did you learn your art form?
For the most part making my trees is self-taught. I typically can look at something and re-create it. I found myself following the path of the wire in others trees and then I let my fingers and love for the tree do the rest. Each creation is very personal to me and I can recognize my own work, even after more than 500 tree creations. Give me a string of wire, some gemstones and a ring to attach them to . . . and my fingers and imagination does the rest.
Who taught you about vintage items?
Once again.- self-taught. I am not big on using patterns. I have used patterns to get the basic shape of an outfit, but when I get to the end of the piece of clothing it is all me, totally unique. I have woken in the middle of the night with a vision of an outfit I want to create and the next day I typically get started on the pieces. I have a very restless mind…it is always clicking fast forward. Crafting helps me slow down the process and enjoy the art. I get very focused when I am working on a new project. The house could fall down around me and I would barely notice. Good thing I waited until my children were grown to discover my craft.
Where do you see your Shop in 5 years from now?
I see myself retired from my fulltime Marketing Manager position. I will move out of the office cubical and retire to work my craft and sell my beautiful trees. My goal is to become the number 1 tree of life pendant seller on all my online stores. My hope is to continue developing the store that I share with my daughter, Amanda Harrison, and keep our relationship very close. She makes all the earrings, bracelets in my shop (or soon to be in my shop). We find crafting together keeps us close and we both love making jewelry TOGETHER.
 How do you manage your time between Etsy and the rest of your life?
Right now time management is very hard. I am working 14 hour days and I spend every vacation making trees. We have a cabin in the woods and while there between hiking, riding my golf cart (I just love that little cart), cooking on the grill and playing with my puppy I am making trees. If I am sitting still I am making trees. It is tough right now but I am happy when I am busy, never been one to sit still long.
Is this a hobby, part-time job, or full-time job?

I would say a part-time job first, hobby second. I like making money from my craft because it provides me the funds to make more and build my business. I love beads and gemstones. Some days I will just pull the box of beads out and explore my treasures. Both my daughter and I have that in common. We have built a gem oasis in our basement. To most it is a box of worthless rocks, to us it is beauty. We could go down there and get lost in the glitter of beads and stones. It is such a blessing to be building a business doing what I love.
Do you make or stock items you love, or what will sell?
I try not to stock. Most of my items are one of a kind and I typically sell them as fast as I post them. I have three monster boxes full of our creations. It is very nice when you are going out and need something super special to go with an outfit. I will show the outfit to my daughter and say to her—create me something special for this outfit. By the time I come down dressed she has made me a beautiful set of jewelry to go with it. She has an eye for color and style. I have my own private designer – very nice indeed.
Where else can we find you online?
You can find me at
and of course now on ETSY
Did you always want to have your own business?
No. Never really thought about it until I found I was creating more than I could ever give away as gifts, keep myself or donate to fund raisers or benefits events. The reaction from friends, family, co-workers, and winners of the donated jewelry caused me to consider opening the doors to our online stores. Plus, when my daughter and I started drifting apart and we found one of the best connections between us was making crafts together it seemed like a no-brainer. Our business (which she named) keeps us strong.
Any other thoughts you want to share with us?
I want to thank Kate Brooks for giving me this opportunity. I made some statements here are are very eye opening to me. I have a habit of totally speaking my mind and I realize my tree of life pendants and my jewelry keep me grounded and focused on what is important in my life. My family, my craft and to God for giving us such a beautiful canvas to work from. Thanks Kate.
Dawn You are Very Very Welcome!
Here is a sample of what you will find in Dawn's Outstanding Shop!

Please come on over and check out my shop


  1. Very good interview! Loved to know about you, Dawn...

  2. What a thoughtful and wonderful interview, Kate! I fell in love with Dawn's shop as well. Dawn, you are an amazingly talented lady. Your tree of life jewelry is so unique! Thanks Kate for bringing attention to Just4FunDesign.

  3. Gorgeous jewelry! Thanks for sharing the interview...I'm off to her etsy shop now!