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Interviews

CONVERSATIONS: Running an Online Shop with The Bloom Print Project

August 24, 2015

Conversations_Shop_Bloom-PrintBloom Print Project | The Orange Slate(photo credit: The Bloom Prints Project)

On Monday mornings around here, I interview people who inspire me. In August and September, the theme is RUNNING AN ONLINE SHOP. Today I’m excited to introduce you to Amy, a fellow mommy, my August almost twin, and a fabulous artist, teacher, maker, and blogger.

Tell me about your shop!

I owns and teach all ages at my eclectic art school, Bloom-Prints Art Studio, blog over at The Bloom-Print Project and serve as an art juror for an international art competition. The studio is based on the premise of inspiring and encouraging those of all ages – no matter where they are at in their creative journey, everyone can “BLOOM” right where they are {within their “bloom-print” of life}!

Amy also creates sweet “bloom loom” embroidery hoop art for childrens’ rooms and nurseries. All looms are hand-crafted from vintage fabrics of the highest quality and each silk bloom is hand-selected from local small businesses with whom Bloom-Prints collaborates. Bloom-Prints believes in collaborating continually with small business and uses fabrics and supplies strictly from vendors with whom she has created relationships. She is also currently writing, illustrating and publishing a sweet children’s book that is very dear to her heart.

Amy began her creative process making these sweet keepsakes when decorating for her daughter Mila’s nursery in the spring of 2014. She wanted something classic, charming, and full of whimsy, a touch of vintage, combined with a modern-day touch. After her nursery was featured on a Pinterest post by Disney Baby, requests for Bloom-Prints custom Hoop Art began to blossom and it makes Amy’s heart swell to think she can be the tiniest part of these sweet baby’s lives by creating a custom keepsake for their rooms.

Describe a typical day in your business.

Oh my word. This is a tough one as I run two small businesses, but the key for me is that I try to stay on a schedule as much as possible. Mornings until naps at 10 I try to dedicate to Mila and development. On days I work from home, it’s books, prayer time, a cup of tea for me and veggie melts for her as we play on the floor. Then, naptime comes and I hit the ground running with planning for studio classes and creating art for customers.

We plan on walks every afternoon for fresh air and for a critical break time, (weather permitting) and of course making intentional time for home chores etc. Kavs (my husband) and I also plan intentional time to “unplug” every day, which is so needed in order to stay connected in this insanely distracting social media/smart phone world.

Do you feel like where you are was a clear goalpost or did it evolve?

I can honestly say my goal was to be used in the ways God wanted to. I knew when the timing was right, as long as I kept creating and being inspired, eventually I would get to where I hoped to be in business.  I want to be in His sweet spot for me, if that makes sense. So If He didn’t open doors, then I didn’t want it. When I started my studio, after days and weeks on my knees in prayer, doors started flying open that I never expected. So I suppose you could say it just happened , but I truly believe the doors were opened. The looms, those became a small business that I NEVER planned however. They were a fun thing for Mila that suddenly started to blossom.

What is your greatest daily challenge right now?

The ever so true mama and work balance. When I leave for the studio, I wish I were snuggling Mila. When I’m at the studio I love it, but can’t wait to be home with Kavs and Mi.

What part of your daily juggle are you most proud of right now?

I am always a work in progress, but am just so thankful to be working and to have wonderful clients that want to work with me as I do what I LOVE!

Who are some of your mentors, role models, or inspirations?

Working moms and stay-at-home moms they both inspire me for so many reasons! The Instagram community floors me. It’s the everyday woman that I adore and learn soooo much from.

 

What is one piece of life advice or time management tip you’d give to someone worried about juggling a family, life, and a business or creative endeavor?

I actually have three!

  • If you have a spouse, get them on board and plan ahead. If my hubs had not supported me since day one, I would have never opened my doors. It’s been so enjoyable because we are a team and he believes in the studio mission.
  • Do what you are passionate about and the rest will follow. It’s a lot of work, but if you love it and it comes naturally, on the not-so-confident days, it’s a lot easier to wing it and learn as you go!
  • A LOT of grace – and rest on occasion! Even God rested on the seventh day. We decided to close on Sundays for that reason. I went to a schedule of rest from working 7am-10pm 7 days a week. It’s just dumb to do that to yourself.

What’s one goal for your business in the next year?

To get the message  of this children’s book that is so tremendously dear to my heart out into the hands of sweet babes and families.

What is the hardest part of your business for you?

Self promotion would be the hardest part for me! As much as I adore what I do, I hate promoting essentially “me,” because I teach 95% of classes. I want to celebrate others ahead of myself.

What are you most grateful for?

The sense of community! Tears shared on our wooden studio floor – priceless.

If you could start over and, knowing where you are now, change one thing, what would it be?

Nothing. God is good. All the time. I learned what I needed to through trial and error – only looking forward, not looking back!

Thank you so much for chatting with me, Amy! I absolutely adore your studio and your creations.

For the other conversations in this series, check out my conversation with Nicole and Meg.

As an aside, one book on my booklist is Jessica Turner’s The Fringe Hours: Making Time for You. It’s been recommended to me as wonderful encouragement for moms trying to make more time to create.

NOTES:

Connect with Amy and Bloom Prints Studio: Instagram | Facebook | Twitter | Pinterest | web site.

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