Tell us a bit about yourself
I live in beautiful Tassie with my husband and two children. I started Mooi Handmade last year after many years of dreaming about what I would design/create oneday when I 'got around to it'.. That day happened last year when I was looking at my fabric stash thinking I really need to start using this! And so, a clutch was born! I started sourcing designer fabrics and leathers and I havent stopped since! I usually manage to get about 2 hours work done during the day when the children sleep, and then another couple hours at night! Its still early days for me, but I love what I do and love having the freedom to create anything I want!
Can you explain your craft/art and the material you like to use?
I design and create clutches, market bags and cuffs using amazingly beautiful Italian leathers and gorgeous designer fabrics! I love mixing up colours and patterns that you wouldn't expect to see together.
Where do you get your inspiration and what is your creative process?
Inspiration comes from anywhere but mainly Magazines (I have a magazine addiction, from Fashion to Interiors), Pinterest and Instagram. Sometimes its just a certain colour combination that I see or a shape that catches my eye. The start of a one of my pieces usually begins with a certain piece of leather or fabric and takes off from there to see what other colours or design features will work with it.
How long have you been creating and how did you get into craft/art?
I've been creating for as long as I remember! From different crafts when I was younger (fabric covered photo frames and brooches made out of Fimo to name a few!) and then moving into Art and design as I got older. Sewing was always my main passion, which led me to study fashion at Tafe when I finished high school. I've always been passionate about Interior Design as well and have dabbled in furniture upholstery and I love to paint too!
How did you come up with your business name?
'Mooi' is a dutch word meaning beautiful. I chose Mooi as a nod to my dutch heritage and because I thought it was a simple name with a great meaning.
What resources 'have or do you' use to help your creative pursuits (i.e. groups, classes, shops, websites etc)?
I google a LOT! If I need to learn a new process or find a different way to do something I'll go to You Tube. I'm fortunate to have some creative friends who are always happy to help come up with ideas and solutions as well.
What's your best advice for someone starting up?
Stick to your guns and believe in what your doing! If you think your product is good and worth selling there will be other people out there who think the same! Get some advice off other people in the same industry. I found the Made It facebook page really helpful!
Do you have any advertising/promotion tips for sellers to be successful?
Facebook has been great for me in getting my products seen by a lot of people leading to quite a few wholesale enquiries! I've also started 'pinning' my items on pinterest.
Can you share any lessons that you have learned the hard way?
Work out your pricing early on. I made the mistake of trying to price my items as cheaply as possible because I was worried they wouldn't sell! This meant I didn't make much profit and there was no way I could sell wholesale as there wasn't any profit in it for the retailer! I now have a set formula that I use so I know exactly what the retail price will be from the start so there's no confusion or double guessing!
What do you like to do besides creating?
When I'm not creating I love spending time with my family, gardening, shopping for second-hand furniture, heading to the beach, drinking coffee and flicking through magazines, throwing dinner parties and playing basketball!
What is your favourite music, television show, film, book, website?
Fav Music - anything that happens to be on the radio.
Fav TV shows - Grand Designs, Offspring, Revenge and for a laugh, Miranda!
Favourite film - Everafter.
Favourite book - any James Patterson Novel.
Favourite Website - Pinterest.
What would be your perfect day?
A whole day of shopping in Melbourne!.... On my own! .... Followed by a massage and dinner at a fancy restaurant!
Who is your favourite madeit seller, explain why in less than 10 words?
Three Beans in a pod - nyone who crochets!! because I've tried it and I just cannot get the hang of it!! So my fav seller at the moment is 'Three Beans in a pod', beautiful designs and colours!
Mooi Handmade visit store
13 May 2014