My One Brown Mousevisit store
Tell us a bit about yourself.
My name is Kerry and I live in county Victoria, about 3 hours west of Melbourne. My family consists of myself, my husband Michael and our 2 kids, Lily (13) and Aiden (10). We live on a small farm with a vast array of sheep, cows, chooks, dogs and cats. My days can vary greatly from making gorgeous clothes to feeding animals to chasing cows off the road (yep, I did that last week). Before MyOneBrownMouse I was an administration officer for a small family run car dealership. I have to say now I really dislike anything to do with administration and paperwork! (I’d say my creative side won that battle!!)
Can you explain your craft/art and the material you like to use?
MyOneBrownMouse mainly caters to kids and babies, with the occasional addition of Ladies dresses, funky pouches and accessories. I love bold and bright fabrics to make our classic design clothing. I believe that the gorgeous fabric should speak for itself and classic garment design showcases the fabric.
Where do you get your inspiration and what is your creative process?
Fabric, fabric, fabric! I never buy fabric with a specific item in mind, I tend to hoard until the inspiration grabs me. I love reading at lots of blogs and the web, but Pinterest is my go-to guilty pleasure! I spend way too much time on there!
How long have you been creating and how did you get into craft/art?
I was given a small toy sewing machine as a child and I suppose it all went from there. I started making clothes for Barbie dolls and soon I was making clothes for myself with the help of mum (who is a beautiful sewer). When I reached secondary school I was taught how to read patterns and draft my own patterns. I will never forget my textile teacher. I know she struggled with my reluctance to use patterns and in the end gave up and taught me how to draft my own!
How did you come up with your business name?
When my daughter was born she made the cutest little squeaking noises so we nicknamed her the mouse. My surname is Brown so it all just went from there and I came up with MyOneBrownMouse!
What resources have you, or do you, use to help your creative pursuits (e.g. groups, classes, shops, websites etc)?
As I mentioned before I’m a huge fan of Pinterest (well, an addict actually). I take small snippets of inspiration from the many things that I see. Pinterest also is a wealth of information with many tutorials for that odd time you might need a bit of help when creating something. I do admit I’ve ‘YouTube’d’ videos when I’ve been stuck before, but who hasn’t? I am also a member of some fantastic Facebook groups; if I need help many are only too happy to offer advice.
What's your best advice for someone starting up?
Just have a go!! Nothing was ever started by thinking about it. I remember my thrill when I sold my first item & I’ve got to say I still get it every sale I make. Keep your head down and don’t waste time comparing yourself to others, inspiration will never hit that way. Don’t dwell if you see something similar to your product…. Move on…. Evolve! Make sure your photos pop, people shop online with their eyes.
Do you have any advertising/promotion tips for sellers to be successful?
I use Facebook, Instagram & Pinterest. All are great promotional tools but you have to be active. Never be afraid of posting too many updates; the people that you may annoy may not be that interested in the first place. I have some fantastic brand reps & enthusiasts who cross-promote most of my posts thus increasing my reach.
Can you share any lessons that you have learned the hard way?
Value what you do and don’t undersell yourself or your product for the sake of getting a sale. Handmade can sometime be a difficult market when you’re competing with the big chain stores. If someone asks if they can help, take the offer! I know I would be lost without my husband who during busy times becomes chief post-organiser, deliveryman and general kid wrangler.
What do you like to do, besides creating?
In my little spare time that I have, I like to spend with my little family. Sometimes this may be just working together on the farm, heading off to various sporting & music commitments or just vegging out watching a movie.
What is your favourite music, television show, film, book, website, and/or phone app?
Music - I love folk, contemporary and a little bit of country music. You will currently find the computer in workspace blaring with First Aid Kit & the Waifs. TV - I’m a Block addict cant miss an episode. Movies – My all-time favourite movie is The Help. “You are kind, you are smart you are important.” Best line in a movie ever! Books - I will read almost anything but I love a murder mystery; something that keeps you guessing until the end. Websites / Apps - Why Made It of course! And did I also say I loved Pinterest?
What would be your perfect day?
Sleep-in, breaky with the kids & hubby followed by a lazy day (I don’t get many of those).
Who is one of your favourite Made It sellers? Explain why in less than 10 words?
ZippyZippy - I love the gorgeous Jacqueline’s odd sock and laundry bags. These are used daily in my house.
MyOneBrownMouse visit store
24 November 2015