Andrea(Dré) of WillowcatStudio
I tend to frequent Etsy, an online market place where I get lost for hours ooohing and auhing over hundreds of artist’s creations and when my heart begs for more insight on what it is exactly that drives these wonderfully creative and talented people I hit up the forums to find out more. On such an occasion I found WillowcatStudio and even back then she struck me as quite witty, quirky and kind which is happily what I’d imagined. That same week she had found my shop and bought a pair of hairpins, it was an awesome coincidence.
So months later through yet another strange string of happenstance we bumped into each other once more. I had featured an item from her shop in Daisy Finds only to find out that same week through a convo (Etsy's catchy slang for email) that she’d blogged about the exact pair of hairpins she bought back in April for her daughter’s hair. So when I was fretting about who to feature first for Indie Ever After it all just made sense, duh…..WillowcatStudio!!
1. Tell us a little about yourself.
I hate questions like this. I am a 32 year old (mom, wife, friend, daughter, artist, crafter*) woman. My husband and I live in a small southern Manitoba town with our amazing children and 4 pets. I have become accustomed to doing several things on the go and it is not unheard of to watch me paint, cook and play simultaneously.*not in that order, varies daily
2. How did you know you wanted to be an artist/crafter?
I was almost 5 and attending kindergarten. My teacher, Lise, organized the best project for us. We took wax crayon shavings and arranged them in a design or image, when we were done she pressed it with a hot iron and all the colors melted together. I think at that moment I wanted to become an artist. My mom kept a school days book for me, in grade 2 and onwards the artist box in the 'what do you want to be?’ Section, was always checked.
3. When did you come to create WillowcatStudio?
In 2000 while we lived in Wyoming. Prior to that, I had played with other names but willowcat won out in the end. Willow is the cat that my husband and I got when we had first moved out together, 15 years ago! She is still an awesome cat and it's such a fabulous story.
4. What do you find to be your favorite medium?
If I had to choose one it would be chalk pastels. I adore how the colors blend together or stand on their own. Chalk pastels force me to slow right down and focus on the task and be aware of where my hands and fingers are. We don't spend much time together right now but one day we will.
5. Where do you draw your inspiration from?
My base inspirations come from my crafty aunt who taught me to knit and cook, and my mom who taught me to do things with style and flair, and I do, with my own brand of each. Now I am inspired by the things I see, touch, or daydream. My true inspiration is my husband, who always pushes me to try something a little bit different, who helps me draw outside the lines and discover a little more about me and my work.
6. Where can others find your creations in and outside of Canada?
I am currently in 2 brick and mortar stores Sew Dandee at 105 Osborne st in Winnipeg as well as The Pembina Hills Arts Council at 352 Stephen St in Morden Manitoba. If you don't live there you can find me online at Etsy, and I am building a cafe press store too, as willowcatstudio of course.
7. Why Etsy?
I liked the community and the forums, people are really welcoming and eager to help and encourage you. It felt more like a neighborhood and everyone waved and smiled to each other, that's why!