Tuesday, September 30, 2008

Gnome Clothes

Michelle McKeon

Right now we are living in West Lafayette, IN while my husband finishes his PhD program at Purdue. We have lived many places including Long Beach and Napa, California, Fort Collins, Colorado and Eugene, Oregon.

Business Name

Describe what you sell.
My items include Reusable Cloth Sandwich Wraps, Cloth Baggies, Cloth
Napkins, Cloth Snack Bags and Cloth Produce Bags. In my "spare" time I enjoy making fun and unique play dresses and skirts for imaginative little girls. I sell these at a local craft boutique.

Sandwich Wraps- 100% Double-layer Soft Cotton Flannel with a Velcro closure- use in place of plastic baggies to wrap up your sandwich for lunchtime- doubles as a placemat when it's time to eat.
Baggies- 100% Double Layer Soft Cotton Flannel- Flip-top style (think of the old style plastic bags sans ziplock). Use instead of plastic baggies to hold sandwiches, snacks, crayons, toys…you name it.
Napkins- 100% Single Layer Soft Cotton Flannel -Reusable/ Machine Washable- Fun prints, small size perfect for children and/or your lunchtime needs. Use in place of paper napkins and/or paper towels.
Snack Bags- 100% Cotton- Easy Velcro closure Handy carrying handle- Use them for
• snacks, fruit
• toys,

• gym tote, ID, Money holder
• ipod, cell phone
• wristlet,
• cards,

• art supplies,
• make-up,
• anything that you or your child needs to securely and stylishly tote around.
Produce Bags- Reusable- Drawstring closure, see-through for easy scanning. Use at the supermarket and/or farmers market in place of the plastic produce bags.

What is your real life like?
I am a SAHM. I have a very loving and supportive husband, two crazy little girls (my gnomes) who are 5 and 2 and one black lab/mix dog. We moved from CA to IN last year so that my husband could reacquaint himself with the academic world. My first winter in Indiana is what really kicked my sewing butt into gear. I have recently signed up to attend two Craft venues this year. The Strange Folk Festival in O'Fallon, IL coming right up at the end of September and a local High School Booster Club fair in November. Needless to say I have simply been sewing like a mad woman….you know, in my "spare" time.

What is your process?
I have chosen to use only 100% cotton and Organic Cottons in my lunch accessory items. I don't want to have to worry about poly or vinyl coatings, just keep it simple. When I make my play dresses and skirts, I try to keep an open mind to what little girls find "beautiful", colors, textures, sparkles, shiny, furry, all the things that make fabric fun. The "Spin Factor" plays a big role in it as well. I try not to get too technical, just mix, match and have fun with it.

Business Goals and Vision...
I "officially" started this business last February when I listed my first items on Etsy. I have sold over 800 items since then. Honestly though, I have been sewing for my girls since my first one was a baby. Once their closets began overflowing, I thought it was time for others to enjoy our fun as well. I would like to say that I see my business expanding, but really….I only have so much "extra" time, so what I really would like to see in my business is more focus on inspiration, creativity and imaginative play. I simply do this for fun, so I want to have fun doing it.

How do you market your business?
I don't do much marketing. Sometimes I search around forums and find people who are looking for items such as mine. Most of my business comes by word of mouth, my customers are GREAT advertisers. Many have recommended me or even bought items for their friends and/or relatives.

Do you subscribe to any business related blogs, zines or magazines?
I am always keeping an eye on "green" mommy blogs.

What inspires you?
I am most inspired by those little things that you walk by every day. Angles, textures, colors…when you really stop to look around, there are so many exciting aspects
to the world. I do confess that much of the reason I even stop to look is because I see
my daughters' reactions to the simplest pleasures. Looking through others eyes keeps the scenery "fresh".

What are two of your favorite things from your shop?

This Rainbow Snack Bag…I just LOVE the Colors and the Boldness of the pattern (5th picture from top)

Also, My Organic Cotton Line of Sandwich Wraps, Baggies and Snack Bags…Love them…(last picture on the right)

Am a fan of these places...
– she makes the most WONDERFUL detailed fantasy realm maps

olivestar7 I LOVE these baby cocoons -so soft and snuggly
Elfland- I enjoy her creativity
Matt Beard- One of my good friends and stellar artist from Northern California

thedreamygiraffe- hmmm…found one that kind of reminds me of my gnome…

Find seller at..


Anonymous said...

love the items in her store.
everyone should reduce the use of plastic bags.

Jeeks said...

I love the reusable bag Idea! And the items are so cute!.

BlossomingTree said...

The snack bags are really cute. I love the colors of Earth Strata.

Rachel said...

Very good idea!

CheyLoCreations said...

I love reusable stuff! I do cloth wipes too! Great interview/feature!

2BeBold said...

love and support the use of reusable bags... no need for plastic!

RainbowMom said...

Really cool! I also love the reusable snack bags. :)

nicaeli said...

what a great shop. I love it!:)

Fancy said...

I never would have thought to use fabric sandwich bags!


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