If you are into crafting of any kind, you are probably acquainted with Mod Podge. And if you’re familiar with Mod Podge, you have probably read the blog and/or own the book Mod Podge Rocks, by Amy Anderson. I was able to score an interview with this lovely and talented woman from Atlanta, GA and I’m excited to share it below!
You have been knitting and sewing for over 20 years, do you remember what some of your first projects were? OH yes! I remember sewing a few things when I was ten. I learned how to make a little jewelry holder with a pull closure, and a rope basket. I made a ton of rope baskets. Haha! For knitting, it was a very lumpy scarf.
What inspired you to start your blog? I love to write and I love to share with people, so it was a natural fit. Before I started Mod Podge Rocks, I actually blogged on LiveJournal for a few years, just about my life. I’ve always love crafting, so that was the next natural step. I really loved the Mod Podge logo (still do, of course) and it was the next craft I wanted to master, so that’s how the blog was born.
Circus-themed stool. Photo from Mod Podge Rocks
How many hours a week do you think you spend making vs doing businessy stuff? I do about 20% crafty stuff and 80% businessy stuff. Sometimes it’s even less crafty than that. People don’t realize that about blogging – it really changes (the percentage) as you grow.
How many hours a week do you spend blogging? I did a time tracker and last week I worked 60 hours. And that was just on the computer. But when you love something, it’s not work, right?
How long did it take you to complete your book Mod Podge Rocks, what was the process like? Writing a book is REALLY hard, at least it was for me. It took about 9 months for the whole process, and it was very tiring. I imagine it’s like having a baby . . . and I would be a miserable pregnant woman in that same analogy! I didn’t love the process (creatively draining) but the outcome was worth it!
What is your office/studio like? I just moved and my new studio isn’t quite built out yet, but it’s going to be a 1,400 square foot space. I’m so excited!
Recycled Mod Podge Jars for Your Desk. Photo from Amy Anderson
What is a normal (or as normal as it gets) workday like? Any rituals you do every morning, etc? I’m the worst ritual person ever. I really want to become more regimented though . . . I’m all over the place. One thing that remains is that I am not a morning person. I like to get up between 8 – 9 and work on the computer first doing mindless work to get me going. Then I use a task app on my iPhone to tell me what to do next. My goal this year is to get more organized though and have days that I do things – for instance, schedule social media on Mondays, work on crafts on Tuesdays, etc.
Do you listen to music while you work, if so…what inspires you the most? I’m a big classic rock fan. But I’ll listen to anything. My boyfriend laughs at me because I can listen to cheesy pop or watch soap operas while I work – it really doesn’t matter.
Besides Mod Podge, what are your favorite supplies/brands to work with? I love my X-Acto knife, and I love FolkArt chalkboard paint. I also love Martha Stewart gold leafing recently. It kind of depends on the day. Oh, and I always love knitting, so definitely yarn.
What artists have inspired you?
Any favorite blogs that you follow? I’m a HUGE Chuck Close
fan and I also love Charley Harper
. But I don’t really consider myself an artist . . . so what inspires me about them is that they turned a passion into a career.
Endtable Upcycle. Photo from Amy Anderson
Be honest, how many containers of Mod Podge do you own? What is your favorite kind to work with? You would laugh – I have about 3 bottles. My favorites are Hard Coat and Dimensional Magic – and I don’t even have any Hard Coat right now. Because my living/studio space (that I just moved out of) was so small, I couldn’t really have a lot of supplies on hand. so to have a ton of Mod Podge bottles just wasn’t possible. Just wait until I get into my new space though!
Did you have any trouble starting your creative business, any advice you could share? Running your own business is a LOT of work. It’s not for the faint of heart. I am an accountant, office manager, and janitor – among many other roles – in addition to actually doing the work. I wouldn’t say I had “trouble” per se, but it did take awhile to ramp up. It’s not cheap and it’s time consuming. But it’s very satisfying. I would say if you want to be successful, you need to do two things primarily: 1) work hard and often – put the time in; and 2) focus on your OWN work, not the work of others. Nothing good comes out of comparing yourself.
There are many other things that go into running your own business, but those are important, at least when you are starting out.
What do you do when you need to unwind? Hang out with my dogs or exercise. It clears the mind. I also love to knit. I know, I sound like a crazy crafty lady!
Favorite piece of art you own that you did not create?
A Charley Harper
signed print. I LOVE Charley Harper!
DIY Charley Harper Wall Art. Photo from Amy Anderson (proof that she really loves Charley Harper)
What is your favorite thing about what you do? I like getting to make my own decisions about big things. When you work at a traditional job, you have a boss. I like that I don’t have to run my decisions by anyone. Of course I have clients, but ultimately I decide what I do. Maybe I love it because I’m an oldest child and I have four younger brothers, and I’m bossy? :0
Favorite gift to make for someone? I love making mason jar gifts or jewelry.
How do you decide on the Contributors for your blog? Do they come to you or do you approach them? I actually had people apply. I love my contributors!
What do you see in your future? Definitely doing more consulting, writing another book – then I’m not sure. I should probably get a plan, no?
Since I found Mod Podge Rocks in my stash of craft books when I moved, this interview has inspired me to make some crafty creations from the book! I’ll be sure to share some of the projects. If you want to learn more about Amy Anderson, check out her cool tutorials or see where she gets her inspiration from, check out her blog and connect with her on Facebook, Twitter, Instagram, Google + and Pinterest. If you want to be featured on the Meet the Maker, leave me a comment or e-mail me! You can also find me on Facebook, Twitter, Instagram, Google + and Pinterest.
I think the men of Creedence Clearwater Revival were clearly underestimating the amount of thrift stores in Lodi when they wrote the song Stuck in Lodi Again. I’ve been so spoiled by all of the good prices here, that I have a hard time thrifting in Sacramento because everything is so overpriced. There are so many good stores, and I will have to remember to get photos of them all.
It was actually during a thrifting excursion when my friend Kandyce and I were talking about how much we both love taking trash and turning it into something awesome that we decided to start Sweet Mariposa together. Now when we get together, that’s what we do. Go grab some lunch in Lodi and thrift around town. It has become one of my favorite rituals.
During our last trip, we hit up our two favorite shops – Lodi Junction and New & Again.
- I got a 1st Edition Farm House Book that at New and Again for a $1 and it has a lot of good tips for self-sufficiency, canning and a whole bunch of recipes.
- I got the embroidered hat box for a $3 at Lodi Junction, and I have completely fallen in love with it. Kandyce and I decided we’re going to keep it and use it to transport our stuff when we attend craft fairs and whatnot.
- I got two tote bags for $1 each and I’m planning on screen printing something on them. Not sure what yet, though.
- The records were 6 for $5 and I got some good ones – Johnny Mathis, Babs, Sound of Music. Not sure if I’m going to collect them or sell them. I already have so many records and I’m sure it’s giving Sam an ulcer. So I might have to sell.
So, I got all of that for $10. Kandyce got some stuff at Lodi Junction, so our total came to $15, and we got $5 off that with a coupon. It’s kind of amazing.
Did you score any good thrifts lately? Share them in the comments and on your social media sites with the hashtag #staythrifty. I love sharing good deals! And as always, stay thrifty my friends.