1. Tell us about you and your shop.
My name is Elana. I am a full-time graduate student, in the last year of my Master’s in Spanish program. In between school and various part-time jobs, I like to craft. Although I don’t get much time to create, when I do it provides much needed stress relief. I live in Wilmington, NC with my husband and two cats, where my studio is lucky to share our 2nd bedroom with the home office.
My shop is called Squeeze Card Co. with the slogan “…because a handmade greeting is like a mailable hug.” Even though I am terrible at keeping in touch with this or that pulling at me, I think beautiful, handmade cards are a simple way to share the love I feel but don’t always express. I started on Etsy in January of this year, as a way to share my creations with others, and so far I have been pretty successful. It is my hope that through my shop I can bring a little bit of happiness and love to others.
2. How did you get started in your craft?
I have always loved art in any form…give me a new box of crayons or colored pencils and I was a happy kid! In high school I dabbled in an elemental form of scrapbooking, which I soon abandoned, but I continued to collect beautiful notebooks and stationery, and relish any visit to an office supply store, and in the end, my love of paper won over.
My crafting in its current form began sometime in early last year as I was planning my wedding on a tight budget. Needing something particular and not being able to spend a lot, I designed and made my own wedding invitation and paper goods (a whole array including inserts, reply cards, maps, programs, menus, table numbers…) using a rubber stamp with a star motif. I was hooked on stamps. I began to dabble with techniques and supplies, and the rest is history.
3. What tool can you not live without?
The most basic of basic tools are really two- my paper trimmers. I have two, one with a cutting blade and one with a scoring blade, and I use them both on nearly every single project.
4. What inspires you?
I take a lot of inspiration from colors, since that is usually my starting point for a project. I just love color! I love to try new color combos, pulling them from photographs or color challenges. I am also inspired by patterns and textures: in catalogs, looking through pictures I’ve taken, in nature...inspiration is everywhere if you look hard enough.
5. Name one favorite item from your store
Hmm…right now my shop is pretty bare because I have been working like a mad woman on my first wholesale order, but I think I have to go with this notebook. Maybe it stems from my love of list making, or of notebooks (I once collected them) or of this handmade crown detail, don't know but I just love it.