Sunday, June 12, 2016


This month I chose to interview a shop owner whose shop always catches my eye. It is bold, gorgeous, and so fun. I introduce you to RubiaCraft!

Etsy Paper: Tell us a little about yourself.
RubiaCraft: My name is Valeria Kondor. I am Hungarian. I was born in this beautiful little county in 1975, grew up here and earned my BFA in visual arts from Eszterhazy Karoly College of a historical town of Eger. I worked 10 years in the animation industry as a production manager and this job took me to India. I lived and worked there for 12 years. I met my Husband also in India and we have a wonderful 7 year old Son. After our Son was born, I decided to go back to art. Two years ago we moved to Hungary where I live and work now.
paper cut house box custom color 2.4x2.4x4 inch
Paper House
Etsy Paper: When did you open your shop on Etsy?
RubiaCraft: I opened my RubiaCraft Etsy shop in 2012. Originally I opened it for my Mom’s textile works, then after a year or so I took it over with my paper works. I have another shop for my art that I opened in 2011.

Etsy Paper: Tell us about your shop.
RubiaCraft: RubiaCraft is for my paper boxes, decor papers and paper decoration items. I design and make everything myself in my home studio. I would like to start printing wallpapers that is a long cherished dream, and also would like to make printed boxes.
paper cut greeting invitation card choose your color - B6 size 5.1x4inch set of 6
Greeting Card
Etsy Paper: What type of work space do you have? Did you have to clear away something in your home to find the space?RubiaCraft: I am a full time artist. After taking my Son to the school in the morning, I come home and sit to work. I have a studio space in the living room that includes my art-craft table, large format printer and cutting machine, also some flower pots and three turtles. When I do lino printing, I transform the area to a printing workshop, or when working on large canvas paintings, I rearrange it to have more space. One day I will need a separate studio but now it works for me.

Etsy Paper: How much "technology" do you use in your works?
RubiaCraft: I started paper cutting to add inlayed collage elements to my watercolor paintings. Then I went on cutting decorative designs. First I just used hobby cutter knife, then I needed more precision so bought X-acto knife. Cutting by hand has its own delicate appearance but cutting the whole day is painful to the fingers and arm, also quantity is limited. Today I use Silhouette Cameo cutting machine for most of my paper cut designs and boxes.
My boxes are all no-glue ones that you can assemble just by folding. I paint, make box layouts, design surface patterns. It includes a variety of activities so I have to prioritize always to make sure that first of all I finish the paid orders, then continue with ongoing new works. I have many box layouts and pattern designs in the making. It takes me days, sometimes weeks to finalize one so I am always surrounded by the ongoing project items. Even when other prioritized works put them on hold, they are in front of my eyes so the thought process is going on. 
As a new addition to my studio, I invested on a large format printer. I create surface designs from my paintings and print them on paper. Paper is a very versatile material for decoration and these printed papers make not only gift wrapping papers, but are great to make bags, beads, envelopes, flags and buntings, origami, storage containers, pinwheels, lamp shades just to name few. 

Wrapping Paper
Etsy Paper: What inspires you?
Rubia Craft: I like clean outlined silhouette forms of any kind – architectural forms, backlit elements of the natural world, shadows. Indian life thought me harmony and gave me great inspiration for new shapes and colors! I draw and sketch a lot, often in the evenings too in the kitchen while waiting for the rice to cook. I am a Capricorn, and becoming even more characteristic that way with time. I love simplicity combined with delicacy.

Etsy Paper
What is your favorite item to create and why? 
Rubia Craft: I like to work on custom orders that I mostly get for paper boxes. The customer outlines the idea and I make just what they need and like. It is such a joy when they write how much their loved ones appreciated the box or banner.
bird paper cut party banner spring 7.7x9.3 inch - 6 pennants
Bird Banner
Etsy Paper: Do you sell mostly online or at craft shows?RubiaCraft: My main market place is Etsy, I enjoy being part of the active and inspiring community of makers and artists!

Etsy Paper: What do you have on while you're creating, if anything, and is it tuned to something specific? RubiaCraft: I work usually in silence, but periodically I put on music that I listen again and again. Once I had a U2 album on for a whole month every day. I relax with my Son, cycling, yoga and dance!
I feel blessed every morning when sitting down to work for being able to create and make, getting connected to wonderful people around the world and learn.

Wow! Such a vibrant personality and shop to match. Great pieces for Summer, and really all year round.

Until next time,
Etsy Paper
Team Captain

Sunday, May 1, 2016

23 janvier

May is here! What a gorgeous time of year. Speaking of gorgeous, I found a gorgeous shop on the Etsy paper Team. 23janvier has absolutely stunning prints and a variety of ways to enjoy them. Now, let's meet the shop owner Marie-Charlotte. 

Etsy Paper: Tell us a little about yourself.
Marie-Charlotte: Hi, my name is Marie-Charlotte Kerzan ; I'm a French artist living in south west of France in a lovely city called Pau. I've been studying in French school of art learning painting, graphic design, photography and paper work.

Japanese handbound notebook printed with a blue pattern, Panoramic size, choose your paper, for drawing or writing
Japanese Notebook
Etsy Paper: When did you open your shop on Etsy?
Marie-Charlotte: I've opened my shop at the end of year 2013. It was not a big collection at the beginning but little by little I've developed my workshop and my activity has grown up.

Etsy Paper: Tell us about your shop.
Marie-Charlotte: In my shop 23janvier, I sell handmade stationery inspired by Japanese design. I create handmade notebooks, handprinted washi paper, cards and original illustration. I create and made every item I sell, using traditional technics as stamp printing, engraving and Japanese binding. My stationery is floral, coloured and delicate inspired by nature and Botany reminding painting aesthetic. It's important to use the best material, the less polluting using ecological paper, water-base paintings etc.

In my shop, you will find a little fabric collection, printed with 23janvier's patterns and using eco-friendly, water-based inks as well.

Paper Sheets
Etsy Paper: What inspires you?
Marie-Charlotte: Nature, flowers, Botany. I create my patterns with plants I pick up, using painting, photography and stamping. I'm passionate with asiatic paper work because it gives to paper and stationery a precious nature. Paper is a really delicate, sensitive material and I try to make objects who are not just useful but above all who give the envy of writing and contemplating.

Etsy Paper: How do you package your items?
Marie-Charlotte: My items are packaged using thin paper as washi or Chinese paper. Those paper give beautiful foldings and are a little transparent which reveals the patterns inside. I finish my package with natural string as white raffia.

Etsy Paper: What is your favorite item to create and why?
Marie-Charlotte: I think my favorite item to create is Japanese paper; I use natural white paper I print with stamps I've designed using colours I've made. Hand-printing is so interesting; each paper has its difference and it's up to me to accentuate it or not. Hand-printing brings a lot of freedom and inspiration in my creativity.

Etsy Paper: What is your favorite thing about Etsy?
Marie-Charlotte: I've discovered etsy just before I've opened my shop and I think it's a simple and really effective way to discover other talents. What I like the most about etsy is the melting pot, the real exchange you can have with people all around the world and I've discovered beautiful things thanks to this website.

Etsy Paper: Is there something that you've never tried with paper that you'd like to try?
Marie-Charlotte: I have lots of paper projects but my actual and biggest one is to make hand-dyed paper wrappings using Japanese shibori technic. Shibori is a traditional technic which consists on drawing patterns using foldings. I study and work on stains using plants and ground in a way to create a hundred percent natural decorative paper.

I hope you enjoyed learning all about 23janvier. Aren't the prints amazingly gorgeous?!

Until next time,
Etsy Paper
Team Captain

Sunday, April 3, 2016

Charonel Designs

This month's interview is with a fun, feminine, beachy kind of shop. Sue and Elissa have an endless amount of items in their shop with a little something for everyone. Read all about them and Charonel Designs.

Etsy Paper: Tell us a little about yourself.
Charonel Designs: We are a mother daughter team that lives in sunny Texas. We have 2 furry assistants (our cats Cheeto and JJ) who like to supervise and help us with our shop projects. Sue operated a wedding cake business for 10 years and Elissa used to be a stamping demonstrator and still works full time as a business analyst. When we aren’t crafting, we love to go to antique shows and visit fun little towns all over Texas. We come from a creative family and inherited some of our creative ability from Sue’s mother who was an artist and teacher. 
Etsy Paper: When did you open your shop on Etsy?
Charonel Designs: Our shop was created when Sue’s wedding clients expressed interest in having custom wedding invitations and favors created for them. After Sue closed her wedding cake business in 2009, we decided to migrate our paper creations to an online store and we found

     Etsy Paper: Tell us about your shop.
     Charonel Designs: We create invitations, table numbers, favor boxes and gift tags for parties, weddings and special events. Wedding cake and cupcake toppers are a favorite too.
Etsy Paper: How did your shop get its name?
Charonel Designs: We used the family name Charon and added the first two letters of Elissa’s name to come up with Charonel and then added the Designs.

Etsy Paper: What inspires you?
    Charonel Designs: We are inspired by our many travels together and apart. We love the beach and the ocean and spent many years in Florida. Traveling to the Caribbean is a favorite past time and we draw a lot of inspiration from the islands and the wonderful tropical colors and themes. Our tropical table numbers and gift tags are some of our most popular designs. Sometimes we are inspired by wedding trends and wedding cakes. 

Etsy Paper: Is there a certain color or motif that you are repeatedly drawn to?
Charonel Designs: We are always drawn to tropical motifs, the beach, the ocean, seashells. Paris and shabby chic are favorite go to styles as well. We also like creating fun projects with a Texas or cowboy theme, naturally influenced by where we live. Aqua and pink are favorite colors we are drawn to. Roses seem to be a re-occurring theme as well, inspired by the roses in our garden.

Etsy Paper: What is your favorite technique/ your "specialty"?
Charonel Designs: One of our specialties is paper shoes decorated with bits of lace, buttons and vintage trims. We created a paper shoe one Halloween for a candy favor. We decided to try decorating these paper shows like little Marie Antoinette shoes. We found vintage lace, trims and velvet flowers at an estate sale and local fabric shops and started to incorporate them into our shoe designs. We once had someone order 75 of them for New Year’s Eve masquerade ball, those were extremely fun to do!

Etsy Paper: How did you learn your craft?
Charonel Designs: Art has always been in the blood for both of us. Sue’s mother was an artist and teacher and always had a creative project going on from sewing, drawing, crocheting or china painting. Elissa started stamping when a friend invited her to a stamping class. She soon caught the bug and became a demonstrator teaching classes for 3 years. Through that experience, she learned techniques for working with paper. This transitioned easily into making paper items for brides. Sue has always loved to cook and bake and always took creative classes like pottery and painting. When she lost her job, she started a business making wedding cakes. When she closed the cake business she started to help Elissa with the paper creations. 

Etsy Paper: What is your first crafting memory?
Charonel Designs: One of Sue’s favorite memories was when she was a little girl, she made 120 Easter hats for family members at a family reunion. They were made from paper plates and roses fashioned from colored Kleenex.
One of Elissa’s favorite memories is her grandmother teaching her how to crochet and also decorating her bicycle for an Easter parade using colored tissue paper roses.

Etsy Paper: Do you have a special space for your crafting, or does the kitchen table do double duty?
Charonel Designs: We have a craft room in our house that’s used to store the many stamps, packages of paper and spools of ribbon we use. But we do the actual crafting usually in the living room or at the kitchen table. We enjoy watching Hallmark movies when we create! We generally spread out for as long as we need and then clean it all up when we are done!

Etsy Paper: What number is the most items you've made in one sitting?
Charonel Designs: We had an order from a corporate client for 3000 business card holders. Every single one was cut and embossed with a leaf impression by hand. It took us 4 weeks to get it done working nights and weekends!

Business Card Holder Thank You Notes
Business Card Holder
    Sue and Elissa sure do make a great team and it shows in their shop's items. By the way, Charonel Designs has 927 reviews with a 5-star average, that speaks volumes. 

Until next time,
Etsy Paper

Team Captain

Tuesday, February 2, 2016

Sky Goodies

Welcome to February. This month I have a favorite of mine, Sky Goodies. Misha and Amit are super unique and very talented. Read their interview here.

Etsy Paper:  Tell us a little about yourself.
Sky Goodies:  My name is Misha. I'm a graphic designer. I'm married to my classmate from design school, Amit Gudibanda. He's a product designer. Together we started a design firm called Sky Design 10 years ago, and 3 years ago we started Sky Goodies. We live in a little village inside the bustling mega city of Mumbai, with our six year old daughter, Ashi. We work from a little cottage which is our office and studio, and we have a small team to help us manage the growing business.

Etsy Paper:  When did you open your shop on Etsy?
Sky Goodies:  We opened the Sky Goodies Etsy shop in 2013. We started listing paper printables for DIYs in our Etsy shop, by September 2013. 

DIY Paper Toy / Favor Box / Container | Miniature Flower Pot BIG size, green | Printable A4 size pdf template | Instant digital download
Favor Box
Etsy Paper:  Tell us about your shop.
Sky Goodies:  We design and create paper giftables. The majority of these are DIYs, which one can print at home or buy in physical form as pre-cut and pre-creased kits. We love making happy colourful products which can be used after making, or given as handmade gifts. We also make whimsical hand-drawn 'doodle' planners and notebooks. All our products aim to make the owner happy. My husband and partner, Amit, works out templates and I work on graphics. Although our work overlaps a lot, and we depend on each other for feedback and inspiration.

Etsy Paper:  How did your shop get its name?
Sky Goodies:  The word ‘Sky’ had special meaning for Amit and me; starting our careers traveling in Mumbai local trains, jam-packed with people; it was all bearable as long as we could catch a glimpse of the sky through a window. ‘Sky’, to us, represented freedom and space, without limits. Our first venture was named simply, ‘Sky Design’. ‘Sky Goodies’ was our second venture, keeping ‘Sky’ from before. ‘Goodies’ refers to the attractiveness of our products, and ‘the goodies’ is also what our friends call us (short for our last name, Gudibanda). 

Etsy Paper:  Name the top crafting items that you cannot live without.
Sky Goodies:  I need lots of colorful paper, craft glue, a craft knife, ruler and a small pair of scissors at all times. A black ink pen is great to doodle ideas with, in a smooth page notebook. I carry a notebook all the time to sketch in. 

Etsy Paper:  What is it about paper that draws you to create with it?
Sky Goodies:  Paper is available easily everywhere: that's the best part. It is inexpensive and comes in a huge variety of colors, patterns and finishes. When I was young I didn't have access to DIY kits or hobby sets, but my father always gave me lots of waste paper from his office, and that was my playground. I love the smell of fresh paper and the feeling and texture of it. I like making paper products because it can be moulded into many forms. I also like the fact that paper has a limited life and you need to handle it with sensitivity and care. If while making something, you go wrong, there is no 'undo' button. One has to deal with the setback; it's great learning for children as I think the ability to deal with failure is important for happiness. 

Etsy Paper:  Are you a clean or messy crafter?
Sky Goodies:  I am an extremely messy crafter (and person!). While I like my designs to be precise and perfect, I cannot function in clinically neat places. My desk is full of color, odds and ends I have collected, notes and reminders to myself, and all kinds of pens and tools for paper crafting. I am a squirrel when it comes to paper and hoard all kinds of it. While cutting and pasting I clean up a part of my desk but it soon becomes a mess again. I try to be neat but have made my peace with the mess, as I like the chaos of color and it helps me think. I have 5 notebooks going on at any point and mostly can't find 3 of them :) but it's nice to come across old ideas suddenly and get inspired about something else. 

Etsy Paper:  Is there a certain color or motif that you are repeatedly drawn to?
Sky Goodies:  Yes. I love colorful Indian Street and Pop Art. Like old Hindi film posters which were hand painted. Or colorful firecracker packaging printed cheaply and showing bizarre motifs. I love the intricate quality of ornamentation in Indian art. I also love matchbox art, because it surprises me with it's craziness and whimsical character. They use fully saturated colors and bold combinations. All of these find their way into our products. 
Wall Calendar
Etsy Paper:  Where do you feel at peace, free from all the pressure of family and work?Sky Goodies:  I feel at peace among hills and forests, away from the concrete jungle of Bombay. In places where there is no sound of traffic. Amit and I drive out of town with our kid in our car often on weekends, and picnic in the wilderness. We love going for long rambling walks, where there are no people; just trees, birds, insects and their sounds. We love the early morning coolness and the feeling of fresh grass under our feet. We like trekking; it makes things very simple; it's the just about surviving, walking till you reach your destination and enjoying the journey. We love showing our daughter beautiful places, paddling in streams and feeding birds and fish. My favourite place is the Himalaya Mountains; they are so majestic and awe-inspiring, it is humbling to be among them; I can feel the presence of God when I am in the mountains. 

Etsy Paper:  What have you learned the most about life from your craft?
Sky Goodies:  I have learned that I am happy while making things that give others joy. The letters and reviews from customers telling us how they enjoyed the paper crafts with their children and families; how they made handmade gifts for loved ones; these are very valuable to us. Earlier we worked for many years on big, important and glamorous corporate and advertising projects; the projects were successful and the business was great, but the work did not make us so happy. Making small paper toys is far more fulfilling because I know they create joy for their owners. I have therefore learned that giving and making are probably the two most important parts of being happy in life. 

Sky Goodies has a style so unique. The items have a way of showing the personalities of Misha and Amit. Take some time to browse their shop and possibly create your next printable craft. 

Until next time,
Etsy Paper
Team Captain