Today's Featured Family of Artists
Helena Al-Kubaisi (wife)
Flynn Rosenberg (2 ½ yr old son)
Helena Al-Kubaisi (wife)
Flynn Rosenberg (2 ½ yr old son)
Here is my interview!
A. What do you sell?
Q. Nature-inspired jewelry, fiber art fashions and expressions in wood. Only have one wood item in our shop, as my woodworking area is outside and it is so very cold in Colorado during the winter season to work in that space. I will hopefully be back to doing some woodworking this summer :-)
A. How did you get started with Etsy?
Q. My wife and I started knitting together during the evenings and she also attends a knitting group in the community once a week. The nice ladies there talk about Etsy often. That's how we got to know Etsy and then finally opened up a shop.
A. When did you get interested in making your Art/Craft?
Q. I have always been interested in handmade crafts. As a young boy, I would help my mom with her loom. As most folks probably feel the same as I do, I believe working with your hands to create is very soothing to the soul. The very act of creating/the steps you take to get there (no matter what the final product is) brings much happiness and peace to my brain. Truthfully, knitting and working on jewelry after work (hospital lab day job) in the evenings is the best therapy on the planet and even cheaper than a therapist :-). I appreciate that my wife and I can share in this time together. Our toddler boy Flynn brings us much inspiration and enjoys crafting too. Kids naturally are interested and drawn to creating and as they grow into adults, sometimes that aspect of their lives moves to a lower position. When I used to teach high school science, I always wondered why teaching high school kids was harder than the elementary kiddos. The elementary kids naturally want to ask questions, design and experiment. My high school kids had so many other things going on in their lives, that asking questions and designing experiments (what they did so freely as youngsters) actually became a very difficult task. Anyways, this has been my observation with interest in arts/craft creation and it has helped me to rethink/evaluate what I enjoy most and to incorporate a little more of crafting in my life.
A. Where does your inspiration come from?
Q. Hands down, my inspiration comes directly from the places my wife and I have lived. She is from Hawaii and I am from Colorado. You can see some of the ocean-mountain exchanges in our jewelry. Our toddler boy, Flynn, provides a push for designs as well. I will see him poke around in the yard or see things on our hikes that he points out. I'll start with colors or textures he interacts with in his natural world and use that a sounding board for the jewelry I design.
A. Who taught you or how did you learn your art form?
Q. I took a few classes in jewelry making, checked out many library books and visit our local rock and mineral shops. The people at the rock and jewelry shops are always helpful in answering your questions. I took a few classes from them as well.
A. Where do you see your Shop in 5 years from now?
Q. Five years from now, I intend positive changes and growth for MountainUrsusDesigns. We learn everyday about how to improve our methods, how to tackle the continual day-to-day lists and at the same time, balance life as a family. I see shipping our handmade items worldwide and hope that these folks are inspired just as much as we. Etsy is a great tool for connecting with people on a global scale. We can take that opportunity to connect with people all over the world and find out that we share so many things in common.
A. How do you manage your time between Etsy and the rest of your life?
Q. Managing time for Etsy and the rest of my life is difficult. It is a daily challenge to keep up with it all. But, I am continually fueled by the positive experiences I have had with folks in the Etsy community. My wife does all the photography for the handmade items we make and this is a HUGE help. Each day, I try to chip away at a few more things to do on the daily list she leaves for me to do when I get home from work. Whether that be answer convos, work on an activity she organized for Flynn and I, or even to take my jewelry apart and start over again. By the way, Helena as the final say in whether a jewelry item gets posted in our shop. Ha! Helena keeps me organized and I am so grateful for her organizational skills. It also helps that I work 8 days on at my day job in a hospital lab and then have 6 days off. I really power through those 6 days off spending time in the evenings when our boy is asleep to create jewelry. During those 6 off days, I pack in as much time with Flynn as I can. We do beading work together and he has been learning to knit. Got through at least 2 cast on stitches without him wiggling away and heading on to the next thing of interest.
A. Is this a hobby, part-time job, or full-time job?
Q. Currently, all of our crafts you see in our Etsy shop are things we have created as a hobby.
A. Do you make or stock items you love, or what will sell?
Q. We make items that we love. For us, part of creating is loving what we make, otherwise the stress can really get to you. Also, it has to be fun! This encourages positive growth in your craft. Just like for kids of all ages, learning is a healthy and positive experience when it is fun. Why should it be any different for us old folk? I learn about new methods, techniques and what works and doesn't while crafting. We truly intend for people to be uplifted by our handmade items just as much as we have been inspired to make them.
A. Where else can we find you online?
Q. Currently, you can find us here:
LIKE US ON FACEBOOK: www.facebook.com/pages/MountainUrsusDesigns/509738365705667?ref=ts&fref=ts
FOLLOW US ON TWITTER: twitter.com/MountainUrsus
PIN WITH US ON PINTEREST: pinterest.com/mountainursus
FOLLOW US ON WANELO: wanelo.com/mountainursusdesigns
FOLLOW US ON GOOGLE+: plus.google.com/106418689589801870701/posts
A. Did you always want to have your own business?
Q. I had my own business cutting firewood for people in Durango, Colorado right out of high school. I learned very early on in that endeavor not to let your business own you. I reflect on those memories often.
A. Any other thoughts you want to share with us?
Q. Intend for positive change, ask questions daily, and above all be grateful and give thanks for the opportunity to be a part of this world and the experiences you become a part of along the way.
Here is a sample of what you will find!