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Cincinnati, OH, 45227

Ohio Made Blog

Linnea Head

Rikki Teeters

Linnea Head is a wildlife artist in Cincinnati, Ohio! She is one of our very favorite local artists. We interviewed Linnea to learn more about her local business. Meet this extremely talented local artist at our Mini Holiday Maker Mart Popup on December 9th!

Linnea Head

Tell us about your local business.

I am Linnea Head, Wildlife Artist. I paint in acrylic and draw with oil pastels and have created collages since I could safely hold a pair of scissors. I mix media a lot, book pages, my own drawings, etc. I got my degree at Xavier University for Philosophy. I wrote my thesis on Immanuel Kant's third critique, titled, "What Art Is."

My artistic goal is to raise awareness in the beauty of our natural world, representing (mainly) animal portraits with vivid colors to capture their essence. Eyes are my favorite thing to depict, as I feel they are both what have the ability to capture a creature's soul and connect us to them. I believe art reveals what is not visible to the sensible eye, but is revealed through the reflective mind's eye.

Linnea Head

What drew you to your craft?

Hmm, this one is a tough question since I have been drawing and painting since the tender age of 4, my favorite subject being horses and people's faces. I doodled throughout high school until I became much more focused on academics, socializing, sports, clubs, and generally practicing being a responsible young adult... it wasn't until I spent an extended summer in Montana, my second year of college, that I started painting again. The wildness of big sky country begged representation and called me back.

Linnea Head

What is your favorite thing you have ever made?

I guess I have a couple. A horse painting, titled "red horse" and currently a lion, called "Fire".

Linnea Head

What did you want to be when you grew up?

When I grow up, I want to be an artist and a lawyer and master hostage negotiator. However, I think I'm still dreaming.

Linnea Head

What is your creative process?

My creative process has been slowly progressing. With no real starting point, cultivated through nature walks, dreaming, books and other artist's images, I simply show up to my studio every moment I can. I take out a canvas and start. Sometimes I have a clear idea, sometimes I don't. I always choose an animal before hand, and if it's a new one, I watch videos for a while (e.g. I started painting gorillas and so I watched videos of them and went to the zoo to see how they move and interact with each other... I also listened to the Tarzan soundtrack while drawing them).

Linnea Head
Fiona The Hippo Art Linnea Head

What advice would you give yourself 10 years ago?

I would tell myself to relax and know that things will turn out if I work hard (I would like to tell myself this now as advice for 10 years in the future). Follow your heart and continue to surround yourself with supportive and intelligent people. Brush off unimportant matters and keep your eyes on your goals. Seek wisdom from others. And most importantly, perseverance.

Linnea Head

Why is it important to support local artists & makers?

First, shopping local brings people together. You enforce the creativity of the people around you. By supporting local artists, you bring more color and creative diversity to your city. It makes you and your city more vibrant and interesting. Secondly, it makes the community more independent and unique. It is easy to buy things from Amazon and get them delivered to you immediately (I am guilty of this myself) but it involves no interactions and rarely does it involve true craft. Local Art/craft is a reflection of your place, your city- make it flourish!

Linnea Head

Why do you love doing what you do?

I have to say that I love being my own boss. I also love all the options I have to use my skills to make the world a better place... I have been able to donate pieces to the Cincinnati zoo and support their efforts in conservation and community building, even though my donations may be small, I feel lucky that I have something to offer. I have felt for a long time that since I was given certain opportunities, it is my duty to make the world a better place than I found that. If I didn't see a way I could do that with my art, I would never pick up a brush again. (Although, I am forever learning how to do this, so please send me your ideas if you have some!!!)

Linnea Head

What advice do you have for other women who want to start their own businesses?

Well, I will start by saying that economically and entrepreneurial speaking, we have lived in a man's world for centuries. However, I truly believed that has changed in the past 100-150 years. Some might view it as slow and that there is still a lot of progress to be made. I chose to look at how far we have come as a civilization and as humans. I don't have any fear that I can succeed as much or more as my male counterparts. My advice to other women is be bold and believe in yourself. Look at the bright side and cultivate the skills the world hasn't seen yet... most of all, and I would say this to both men and women - be yourself, your true self. Not everyone will like you or your products, but if you show your real stuff, some people will LOVE it.

Linnea Head

Natterdoodle

Rikki Teeters

Natterdoodle creates hand-lettered art in Columbus, Ohio! Owner, Natalie, was the first artist we collaborated with at Ohio Explored more than 2 years ago! We interviewed Natterdoodle to learn more about her small business. 

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Tell us about your local business.

Natterdoodle is heartfelt handwriting with a mission to sprinkle positivity confetti. As a lettering artist, I aim to use the power of written word to inspire hearts, minds and fits of giggles.

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What drew you to your craft?

Ever since childhood, I have been a doodler and a writer. I grew up writing poetry and scribbling little doodads inside my journal. I loved language and was always hunting for hidden meaning in song lyrics. Words can wield so much power; in an instant they can bring joy, tug on a memory or cut deep. Lettering art was a natural way to combine my love of art and language; most of the time the words are my own and sometimes I get to borrow and illustrate the lovely thoughts of others.

Natterdoodle

What is your favorite thing you have ever made?

Impossible question. I really couldn't answer it. I can list my top 10 favorite animals in 5 seconds flat, but I can't rate my own art that way!

Natterdoodles

What did you want to be when you grew up?

A writer for Rolling Stone.

Natterdoodle

What is your creative process?

Sometimes an inside joke will inspire me, sometimes it's pop culture. Other times it's a social cause I care deeply about. Getting the words right takes time and getting the lettering right is a very slow process. I'll sketch something a dozen times and spend hours on it before I feel good about it. While I love to use my iPad Pro, I'm still drawn to ink and paper above anything else. One of the hardest things for me is settling on color - I love color so much I can barely hold myself back from dumping every color under the sun onto the page.

Natterdoodle

What advice would you give yourself 10 years ago?

10 years ago if you'd told me I'd be a full-time artist I wouldn't have believed you. I would tell myself to remain open to the wondrous possibilities that might cross your path. And I'd also share one of my personal mottos I wish I was able to embrace earlier: stay tender, stay tough.

Natterdoodle

Why is it important to support local artists & makers?

When you shop local, you're investing in someone's dream. You know that someone touched it with their own two hands and they put love and personal care into every piece. I feel so grateful to live in Ohio; it's a very warm and welcoming environment for entrepreneurs.

Natterdoodle

Why do you love doing what you do?

I love seeing folks' faces light up when they interact with my work. And I love starting out with a fresh white canvas and breathing a whole other world into it.

Natterdoodle

What advice do you have for other women who want to start their own businesses?

Find a supportive community of women who will champion you and your work. Look for women from all different facets of industry and backgrounds; I love hanging with other artists but sometimes I need a community organizer or a non-profit guru to offer me another perspective. You'll need women who will go to bat for you, pick you up when you're down and give you real talk and a swift kick when you need it.

Natterdoodle

What is your favorite thing about exploring Ohio?

I'm always surprised by Ohio. Just when I think I know everything there is to know and have seen everything there is to see, something jumps out and grabs me and makes me even more proud to call Ohio my home.

Natterdoodle
Natterdoodle

Glass Sky Jewelry

Rikki Teeters

Glass Sky creates jewelry to "connect you to your natural, beautiful, nuanced self". We interviewed owner, Andrea, to learn more about her small business. Meet Glass Sky Jewelry at our 2017 Ohio Explored Holiday Maker Mart on December 3rd! 

Glass Sky Jewelry

Tell us about your local business.

Hi! I'm Andrea, the artist behind Glass Sky Jewelry. My background is in Fashion Design and while I was working in that corporate world, my least favorite thing was the message that you aren't good enough unless you wear ___ and know ___ and follow the fashion "rules." With Glass Sky, I hope to focus instead on emboldening, supporting, and really celebrating the strong, natural spirits of the amazing, complex, everyday women.

Glass Sky Jewelry

What drew you to your craft?

I have always been a maker and am infinitely inspired by shapes and textures. Metal-smithing started for me as a hobby and, honestly, as stress relief because it gave me a chance to be creative for no reason other than expression and enjoyment. Putting on the jewelry I made ended up becoming a daily ritual of self care and the pieces became like armor, keeping me connected with my authentic self through out the day. It confirmed for me that jewelry can be something we love to wear for looks, and also for connection to ourselves. Jewelry is almost more intimate than clothing because I think a lot of us end up having our favorite pieces that we wear again and again. I love having the chance to create pieces that can become staples of your style and spirit.

Glass Sky Jewelry

What is your favorite thing you have ever made?

My number one go-to piece to wear is the Many Moons bracelet. It's the first design I made with metalsmithing skills. It has grown on me and with me and feels so full of energy. I had this assignment in an astronomy class in college to observe the moon on different days and at different times to watch its progression. While I don't do it everyday now, I still love to look for the moon and I feel comforted knowing that it's cycling through constant changes. I love contrast and the tension of juxtaposition, so the idea that it reliably changes is so inspiring to me. Other top favorites are the broken glass earrings (I made the first pair on a fire escape in Brooklyn) and the custom pieces that give me a chance to try to tell a story and create something one of a kind and full of meaning.

Glass Sky Jewelry Moons

What did you want to be when you grew up?

In my late teens, I remember talking to adults who had these fascinating journeys and stories of how they came to what they loved. I have always felt very open to the journey. My jump to entrepreneurship though was the first time I felt like I was not only picking a job, but also a lifestyle that I believed in. I didn't realize until I left my old job how much anxiety I carried with me everyday, how sleep deprived I was, and how drained my spirit was. When I left that world, I told my mom it felt like the square peg to my round hole spirit. Being a maker and working in a way where I receive from what I give is really the dream, the Round Peg. And it supports a lifestyle where I can be healthy, content, and inspired. What more could you want?

Glass Sky Jewelry

What is your creative process?

For me it starts with emotional inspiration. I pull from my own experiences and from the things I hear around me. I hope to capture some of those grey moments of life, where things are complex and nuanced and so human. A theme I've been working with lately is dusk and the idea that it's a transition with no clear tipping point. It's self-fueled, unwavering, reliable, unstoppable. The key shape I'm playing with is what I'm calling the Balance Symbol. It shows a strong horizon with the moon and the sun hanging halfway in the balance. Lately I've been riffing off of this shape, adding in materials, creating variations, and really listening to what the women who shop my jewelry ask for. My goal is to create jewelry that supports you, so I love to hear what people are responding to and let that be inspiration to create more.

Glass Sky Jewelry

What advice would you give yourself 10 years ago?

My message would be the one I hope to share with others through my jewelry today.. Don't apologize for who you are. Don't be hard on yourself for who you are not. Embolden and celebrate your strong, natural spirit, whatever that means to you.

Why is it important to support local artists & makers?

It is so easy to buy a thing. But when you buy from an artist or a maker, you buy more than just the thing, you're also buying their passion and their point of view or their view of the world really. I think the reason we emotionally connect with things is because they represent something we believe in too. So when you buy from a local maker, you say with your purchase "I believe in what you believe in. And I support it." And that connection is unbeatable. It serves that artist and their work, but I think it might even serve us as buyers more.

Glass Sky Jewelry

Why do you love doing what you do?

The connections. The challenges. The rewards. It's more than I know how to say really.

Glass Sky Jewelry

What advice do you have for other women who want to start their own businesses?

1. Don't be motivated by fear.

2. The other makers and artists around you are not your competition, they are your colleagues and your community. Don't forget to connect with them and share with them! 

Glass Sky Jewelry

What is your favorite thing about exploring Ohio?

Fall leaves, sunsets, and live music.

Glass Sky Jewelry

Meet Glass Sky Jewelry at our 2017 Ohio Explored Holiday Maker Mart on December 3rd, 2017!

Kylie Meiser Design

Rikki Teeters

Kylie Meiser is a photographer and designer that creates letterpress goods in Cincinnati, Ohio! We interviewed owner, Kylie, to learn more about her small business. Meet Kylie Meiser Design at our 2017 Ohio Explored Holiday Maker Mart on December 3rd!

Kylie Meiser Design

Tell us about your local business.

My original plan all along was to graduate college and get a full-time job as a Graphic Designer. After graduating last December, my plans quickly changed after my experience working at Pistachio Press where I learned more about owning a small business. I knew that working there and starting my own creative business was exactly where I was meant to be on this journey as an artist. My business consists of photography and design services as well as my newly added shop of handmade print and gift items. I strive to constantly educate myself on how to be an environmentally friendly business. Each of my products are created and packaged using a combination of recycled, tree-free, and compostable materials.

Kylie Meiser Design

What drew you to your craft?

Learning the art of letterpress printing during my internship has really inspired me to where I am today as an artist. I love the idea of taking something I’ve designed from the computer and turning it into a hand-printed piece of art that someone else can enjoy.

Kylie Meiser Design

What is your favorite thing you have ever made?

Definitely my Cincinnati Craft Brewery Map! After visiting many of the breweries I started to realize just how big the beer scene is here in Cincinnati. I knew there had to be an interactive way of keeping up with them all, while also creating a piece of art. I took my design to print in August and it’s amazing to see how much my business has grown from this experience. I’m excited to see how I can develop these into other cities and ideas.

Kylie Meiser Design

What did you want to be when you grew up?

As a kid, you could always find me with my nose in a craft book while covered in paint, glue, and whatever else I could get my hands on. When I got a little older my mom bought me a computer program to create little greeting cards and flyers. After all of the years of crafting and making things on the computer I knew my passion was in the creative field.

Kylie Meiser Design

What is your creative process?

I am constantly thinking about what I can make next–most of these ideas happen late at night. Everything starts with a random idea and leads to a ton of research, sketching, and planning (I’m a bit of a perfectionist) until I eventually begin designing on the computer. With my letterpress goods, I send off my digital designs to have a plate created so I can print it on a printing press.

Kylie Meiser Design

What advice would you give yourself 10 years ago?

Never have a set path for your journey in life. Always have an open mind and a free spirit that allows you to follow your heart as it will always guide you in the right direction.

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Why is it important to support local artists & makers?

Local artists and makers are the bread and butter of our community. Behind every purchase from a local artist there is a passionate, hard-working, and dedicated human being who poured their hearts into what you’re taking home.

Kylie Meiser Design

Why do you love doing what you do?

I love the human interaction I get to experience with all of this. Whether its a brief chat with someone at a craft market or a long lasting friendship with a client, I’m truly grateful for all of it. I have been welcomed with open arms by this community and I am so proud to be a part of it.

Kylie Meiser Design
Kylie Meiser Design

What advice do you have for other women who want to start their own businesses?

You will be a part of a community of empowering women who are set out to help one another. Reach out to other small businesses for help or advice, because chances are they are thrilled to help out!

Kylie Meiser Design

What is your favorite thing about exploring Ohio?

I’m a Louisville, Kentucky native who has always loved visiting Ohio. I enjoy the variety in culture and landscape throughout the entire state that creates endless opportunities for adventure. I have a long list of things I’d like to do in Ohio and I can’t wait to keep exploring! 

Kylie Meiser Design

Meet Kylie Meiser Design at our 2017 Ohio Explored Holiday Maker Mart on December 3rd, 2017!

Go Magnetic North

Rikki Teeters

Go Magnetic North makes "Wayward Workbooks" to help travelers prepare for trips, track adventures, and reflect on journeys. We interviewed owner, Amanda, to learn more about her unqiue local business. Meet Go Magnetic North at our 2017 Ohio Explored Holiday Maker Mart on December 3rd!

Go Magnetic North

Tell us about your local business.

Go Magnetic North started with me sitting on the floor of my apartment in Madisonville chicken-scratch sketching in a random notebook pages of what I hoped would turn into something useful. It almost came to me too easy; within a month I had my first printed Wayward Workbook in my hands. That's when I realized how powerful passion can translate into production.

It all stemmed from being questioned by people everywhere I went about how I travel so much and expressing their envy in my trips. It made me feel uncomfortable, like they had this impression that I was superior to them or had something they didn't. The fact is, travel is my passion so I do everything I can to do it as much as I can. I wanted a way to inspire people to take the trip they've been dreaming of, that it is possible to afford it if you know what to look for, that you do have the time, and make the resources more available to them. GMN is still in its infancy, but I am so excited about the direction that it is going and developments that will happen in the future.

Go Magnetic North

What drew you to your craft?

With the Wayward Workbook, I wanted to give people a resource that helped them not only plan and organize their trip, but remember all the moments, big and small, of their adventure. I would always bring a notebook with me while traveling, but never took the time to actually journal in it. So with the Wayward Workbook, I provide short prompts for the traveler to jot those small, but significant moments down without having to take time out of their trip to write entire journal entries.

After we travel, we realize that all of those small moments tend to have the biggest impact on us. I wanted to provide a way to never lose sight of being in the moment wherever you are, but having a special way to look back on and remember those moments later on.

Go Magnetic North

What is your favorite thing you have ever made?

Connections. I know that's beyond the aim of this question, but that is by far my favorite thing that has come from my travels and dipping my toes into the world of creatives. I have connected with some of the most incredible, inspiring people. I don't think anything I could ever create could overshadow the connections I've made, and it is because of those connections that I continue to create.

Go Magnetic North

What did you want to be when you grew up?

My standard answer would be a teacher, but my favorite phase is when I aspired to be a grocery-bagger. I can't tell you why I looked up to cashiers and baggers at grocery stores, but going to Aldi with my grandparents and being able to bag my own groceries was a highlight for me as a kid. Two things to take from this: 1. You never know who you're inspiring, no matter how mundane the work you're doing seems to be. 2. We're all a little weird. Just own it and roll with it.

Go Magnetic North

What is your creative process?

Coffee, mostly, and music. In all honesty, I don't know if I really have a process. Sometimes I go weeks feeling uninspired and stuck, other times a spark of inspiration hits and I leverage it for all it's worth in that moment. I've never identified myself with being a "creative", but the older I've gotten the more I've learned to lean into those 'out of the box' thoughts that occur because it usually means I'm on to something good. One thing I have learned is that you cannot force creativity.

What advice would you give yourself 10 years ago?

10 years ago I was 18. I could write a novel about the advice I would give myself! I'm sure I could write another one 10 years from now as well. The two biggest pieces of advice I would tell myself are to embrace the moments you think against the norm and out of the box, and to start packing your bags now to see as much of the world as you can. Oh, and your parents were right about basically everything.

Go Magnetic North

Why is it important to support local artists & makers?

Because they keep the world full of spirit, inspiration, and hope in the pursuit of a dream! In Cincinnati alone, there is an overwhelming amount of creative talent that I feel so lucky to be surrounded by. The local artists and makers are truly the glue to our communities, connecting us all in ways that otherwise would have never happened without putting themselves and their craft out for us all to experience; the groundbreaking Blink event that happened in Cincinnati is a prime example.

Go Magnetic North

Why do you love doing what you do?

It gives me an opportunity to talk about travel with people and hear their stories. If you ask anyone that knows me, they will probably tell you that I immediately light up when discussing a recent trip I went on, or when someone asks me for travel advice. Seriously, please reach out if you are planning an adventure somewhere! There are so many breathtaking places hidden in this world of ours that truly change you when you get to see them firsthand, and make you realize the importance of protecting this Earth we live on. Also, how humbling it is to be in a completely unknown city/state/country and connect with complete strangers.

Go Magnetic North

What advice do you have for other women who want to start their own businesses?

Don't you dare doubt yourself! The only reason my business exists today is because of fellow female business owners encouraging me to pursue my ideas, so find that tribe and keep them close! There is nothing more inspiring than a woman going against the norm to pursue her dream, and nothing more empowering than being a woman and taking charge to set your own rules for how your life is going to go. If you have a passion or dream that keeps you up at night and gives you butterflies during the day, it is meant to be shared with the world. Share on, girl. Also, keep a regular yoga practice and a bottle of wine on hand at all times.

What is your favorite thing about exploring Ohio?

I've lived in Ohio for majority of my life (from Cleveland to Cincinnati) and it wasn't until the past few years that I really started to appreciate it for what it's worth. The small towns are filled with incredible charm that haven't changed one bit since I was a kid. It feels like going home again every time I drive through them. On the other hand, the bigger cities have gone through some major transformations and it has been so exciting to watch the changes happen and the positive impact it's had on our cities. I love discovering new local stores, restaurants, coffee shops, art, etc. knowing that place is unique to our city or our state and hearing the story behind the owners and how it all came about. I am so proud to be from Ohio and live in Cincinnati and it is because of our strength and support of local businesses and makers that I have this pride.

Go Magnetic North

Meet Go Magnetic North at our 2017 Ohio Explored Holiday Maker Mart on December 3rd, 2017!

SE Designs

Rikki Teeters

SE Designs creates handmade jewelry in Cincinnati, Ohio. We interviewed owner, Samantha, to learn more about her local business. Meet SE Designs at our 2017 Ohio Explored Holiday Maker Mart on December 3rd!

SE Designs

Tell us about your local business.

About five years ago, I started working at a local bead store in Cincinnati for some extra spending money while I was working full-time as a lab tech. I learned how to make jewelry there, and completely fell in love. Around the same time, a co-worker at my full-time job taught me how to knit. Together, these became the creative outlet I didn’t know I was missing.

I finally started SE Designs last year. “SE” stands for Samantha Elizabeth, my first and middle name.  I strive to create unique, high-quality jewelry and hand knit accessories.

What drew you to your craft?

I have always loved creating. I am drawn to anything I can make with my hands. If I have the time and means to make something myself, I’ll give it a try.

SE Designs

What is your favorite thing you have ever made?

I recently made a ring with this huge, beautiful moonstone cabochon. It was the first ring I tried to make with an open bezel setting, and turned into a little bit of an experiment. It’s perfectly imperfect.

What did you want to be when you grew up?

I have never had an answer to this question! I wanted to be and try everything.

SE Designs

What is your creative process?

My inspiration comes from the materials. It’s kind of backwards, but I get gemstones and yarn that I love, and then make a mess laying everything out and deciding how best to showcase the materials. Very rarely do I have an idea in my head first and then get materials to bring that image to life. The best part about jewelry and knitwear? If I’m not happy with what I make, I can tear it apart and start over.

SE Designs

What advice would you give yourself 10 years ago?

Keep your eyes on your own paper. In the age of social media, it can be easy to compare your life to the lives of your peers.

SE Designs

Why is it important to support local artists & makers?

When you support local artists, you are helping to support someone’s dream. Each item you purchase is a representation of someone’s time and passion.

SE Designs

Why do you love doing what you do?

There are always new techniques to create, learn, and master; I love experimenting with new techniques. It is impossible to get bored when you are obsessed with your craft.

SE Designs

What advice do you have for other women who want to start their own businesses?

Be confident in your products and your process! It would be great if everyone liked everything you made, but it’s not realistic. Try not to rely on the approval of others.

SE Designs

What is your favorite thing about exploring Ohio?

My favorite thing about exploring Cincinnati is that it is really a city of neighborhoods. You can move 5 to 10 minutes away and have a completely new living experience. I’ve lived in Norwood, Oakley, Walnut Hills, and Columbia Tusculum, and love different things about each neighborhood.

SE Designs

Meet SE Designs at our 2017 Ohio Explored Holiday Maker Mart on December 3rd, 2017!

Winks & Whiskers

Rikki Teeters

Winks & Whiskers is a small business that creates apparel for "Pet Parents". We interviewed owners, Kayla & Eric, to learn more about their story. Meet Winks & Whiskers at our 2017 Ohio Explored Holiday Maker Mart on December 3rd!

Winks & Whiskers

Tell us about your local business.

We are the Owners of Winks and Whiskers, a Pet Parent Apparel company I co-founded with my husband Eric and our pup Sadie. We sell our original designs on tees, tanks and totes to the pet parent community. We lived in Columbus for 6 years before taking off on the road and we are both originally from the Cincinnati area. Ohio Pride!

Winks and Whiskers was born out of a love between pet and parent. Our driving force behind building a business as a family is that we got married to spend the rest of our life with each other, but after a 9-5 job there isn’t a lot of day left together. So for the next 5 months we spent all non-working hours in our spare bedroom office cranking away at building a business and a brand—a company inspired by our love for each other and our rescue.

Two months after our launch (May 2016) we bought an RV and started traveling full time. We now attend different pet events along the way selling our apparel as a family. With Sadie, our One-Eyed-Wonder by our side, we're bringing the world fresh, on trend graphic tees, tanks and accessories.

Winks & Whiskers

What drew you to your craft?

One afternoon in 2014 at a rescue shelter, we met Sadie, a five-year-old, one-eyed rottie/chow mix who stole our hearts. From that moment on, our lives were changed for good. Neither of us ever imagined how much pet adoption would affect us. Since that day almost four years ago, Sadie has never left our side. In attendance to any dog event we could find, we notice the lack of fashion forward tees for the proud animal lover. So, in a little (pet friendly) coffee shop in Grandview, Ohio, we came up with an idea for a line of apparel that would speak to pet parents like ourselves: proud and passionate with an eye for great design, Winks and Whiskers was born.

Winks & Whiskers

What is your favorite thing you have ever made?

We take a lot of pride in our designs and the shirts we make them on. Our favorite tee we’ve made would have to be our Camping Buddy Tee. It’s our lifestyle through and through.

Camping Buddy

What did you want to be when you grew up?

We both wanted to be marine biologists. Free Willy was obviously played too much as we were kids! Fun fact: we finally got to see wild Orcas while traveling, one of the many advantages of living small and mobile!

Winks & Whiskers

What is your creative process?

We take so much pride in our designs. Everything is crafted in house by Eric, the creative of Winks and Whiskers and a lot of times it starts on paper in his favorite sketchbook. After that we pass it around to our closest pet parent friends to see if they’d wear it or not!

Winks & Whiskers

What advice would you give yourself 10 years ago?

Don’t wait and just do. You WILL learn along the way! If it fails, you learned so much during that journey about yourself, your family, and your friends.

Winks & Whiskers

Why is it important to support local artists & makers?

People in your own community are putting their passions out for the world to see. Supporting them means you are supporting that person's dreams, artistic talents and ability to maintain being a maker in your community.

Winks & Whiskers

Why do you love doing what you do?

After rescuing Sadie, we knew Winks and Whiskers had to be more than just about a trendy design or in-season-saying. We had to make a difference. A portion of every purchase goes straight back to our Spotlight Charities. That means every two months we cut hardworking animal advocate groups a check and send it their way! The ability to do something together as a family and give a portion of it back to dogs and volunteers in need is the major reason we love what we do.

Winks & Whiskers

What advice do you have for other people who want to start their own businesses?

Do it! Take the leap and experience the good, the bad and the ugly. When you look back you will feel more fulfilled. Eric likes to compare it to the hour after a long run. You feel like you accomplished something and though your body is tired, you feel at peace and good about yourself.

Winks & Whiskers

What is your favorite thing about exploring Ohio?

Ohio is our home state! It’s funny when we talk to other people from more “adventurous” areas of the U.S. and they are so surprised when we tell them Ohio has more than just miles and miles of farms. We keep finding new places to visit and explore. You can’t go wrong with a full day or two at Hocking Hills!

Winks & Whiskers

Meet Winks & Whiskers at our 2017 Ohio Explored Holiday Maker Mart on December 3rd, 2017!

Clayflower Studios

Rikki Teeters

Clayflower Studios creates ceramics & grows potted plants in Cincinnati, Ohio. We interviewed owner, Britney, to learn more about her local business. Meet Clayflower Studios at our Mini Holiday Maker Mart Popup Shop on December 9th!

Clayflower Studios

Tell us about your local business.

Clayflower Studios is a potted plant and ceramic art business started by Britney Rhine and currently located in Cincinnati, Ohio. As an artist and self-proclaimed "plant mom", Britney wants to give people the tools to have healthy, happy plants and supply them with unique, handcrafted 'homes' for their plant friends!

Clayflower Studios

What drew you to your craft?

My Dad is both a skilled woodworker and avid gardener. His hobbies really led me to where I am today. Some of my earliest memories are either working with him out in our garden or in his woodshop. My love of plants and need to be surrounded by them was instilled at an early age. Working at Cincinnati's Civic Garden Center and then Delhi's West Hills Greenhouses really helped me hone in on my skills and knowledge of plants and learn the best ways to care for them. As an artist, my craft originally began in woodworking, mostly focusing on indoor and outdoor planter systems. However, after loosing access to my school's woodshop, it was necessary to find a more accessible medium for those forms. It wasn't until I began working and taking classes at Cincinnati's Queen City Clay that I was able to translate those skills to the clay world.

Clayflower Studios

What is your favorite thing you have ever made?

Some of my more recent geometric planter pieces have been my favorite so far. After taking a really great handbuilding class at QCC, I learned how to work with hard slabs to create more angular forms. Even though clay can be a soft, malleable material, working in this way has been an interesting correlation to crafting with wood. I also really love making my "cactus cuties", that come in the form of pins, magnets, keychains, pendants or ornaments. They started as just a way of using up some excess clay, as I just cut out the cacti shapes from the leftover areas on the parts of the slab. All the shapes are cut out by hand, painted with underglaze, and carved using a sgraffito technique, making each piece completely one-of-a-kind. In both style and process, I feel like they are an expressive and fun companion to the more simple and precise geometric pieces. 

Clayflower Studios

What did you want to be when you grew up?

An artist, for sure. I always, always wanted to be an artist. My Mom actually has photos of me from a day in 4th or 5th grade, when we were supposed to come dressed as who we wanted to be when we grew up. I came dressed as Pablo Picasso.

Clayflower Studios

What is your creative process?

For both the plants and ceramic side of it, my process is actually surprisingly meticulous. I really thrive in a clean, organized environment. For the plants, I have separate trays for anything that I'm starting as a top cut vs leaf cutting, etc. For my ceramic work, I love doing everything in the same stages. I cut all my shapes out at the same time, assemble things, then clean all the forms, and do any glazing. I don't like the processes to overlap too much. 

Clayflower Studios

What advice would you give yourself 10 years ago?

I think I would have waited a year or so to head off to school. I fumbled around quite a bit in my first couple years at the Art Academy. I went into school just thinking that I wanted to be an "artist", but I don't think I was mature enough at the time to really know what that meant. I knew plants were important to me, but I was never really sure how to turn them into "art". It wasn't until after graduating that I was really able to connect all the dots.

Clayflower Studios

Why is it important to support local artists & makers?

Of course it is always so imperative to support the arts, but for me it also has a lot to do with our impacts on the environment. By purchasing any sort of item from a local maker, you know for a fact that that item was made here, by that person's hand, likely with local materials, and didn't have to be shipped 1000+ miles to your doorstep. I feel like buying local and handmade is one of the smallest steps we could take towards combating climate change.

Clayflower Studios

Why do you love doing what you do?

It's hard to even describe that feeling. Connecting with people and being able to share a love of plants and the natural world, as well as a love of the arts... it's just beyond words. I love seeing people go home with something that they adore and giving them the tools to care for it so that they might have it for years to come. 

Clayflower Studios

What advice do you have for other women who want to start their own businesses?

My advice to other women who want to be business owners is to use any resource available in your community that you can. Don't be too shy to ask others for help or advice. Cincinnati especially has such a wonderful community and a strong support system for makers and artists. I've learned so much just by observing and talking with other makers and entrepreneurs in this area. The greatest tool is those around you!

Clayflower Studios

What is your favorite thing about exploring Ohio?

The greatest thing about Exploring Ohio has got to be all the PARKS! I'm originally from a small town in southern Illinois that is completely surrounded by state parks, wildlife preserves, etc. Hiking, and exploring in general was such a huge part of my childhood so I was originally a little weary of moving to a city. However the transition to Cincinnati was so easy because even though I'm living in this (what feels like to me) "big city", we are completely surrounded by nature. Some of my favorite parks to visit are Glen Helen Nature Preserve, John Bryan State Park, Hocking Hills, Stonelick State Park and literally any/all of the Great Parks of Hamilton County!

Clayflower Studios
Clayflower Studios

Humble Hive Homemade

Rikki Teeters

Humble Hive Homemade creates natural personal care products in Ohio. We interviewed owner, Lauren, to learn more about her eco-conscious local business. Meet Humble Hive Homemade at our 2017 Ohio Explored Holiday Maker Mart on December 3rd!

Humble Hive Homemade

Tell us about yourself & your local business.

My name is Lauren Craig, and I'm the "human in a kitchen" from Humble hive Homemade. I run the business from my home and make everything with love in our kitchen. I live on a 5-acre Sustainable Family Farm right outside of Yellow Springs, Ohio. I received my Master's Degree in Clinical Mental Health Counseling, but my trajectory changed drastically once I became pregnant with our first son. At that time, I became disillusioned with the products I had been using for myself and my family.

The more I looked into the ingredients utilized, the more determined I became to craft a better, healthier option. Everything we put on our bodies is absorbed by our bodies, and so I went out in search of a safer solution. Slowly but surely, I developed recipes for each product and soon, friends began asking to purchase the items I was making. I'm incredibly passionate about offering others safe, sustainable, products that they can feel good about using. I want to share the high-quality products I've been making for my family for years with others in the most sustainable, healthy manner for our environment. All of my products are made with Organic & Fair-Trade ingredients and are packaged in compostable or reusable containers.

Humble Hive Homemade
Humble Hive Homemade

What drew you to your craft?

Throughout the years, I've become more environmentally conscious and aware of the products and items that we, as a family, utilize on a regular basis. I began connecting the dots around me and realized I needed to take a more active role in creating the reality I wished for. I've always been passionate about cooking and realized that making cosmetics and personal care items utilizes the same principles and draws on that same sense of passion. Thus, it seemed the next logical step that I would rid our home of toxins and begin making all of our own cosmetics and personal care items out of my kitchen.

Humble Hive Homemade

What is your favorite thing you have ever made?

It's a dead tie between two of my products. The first is my "Happy Day" lotion bar. It's impossible for me not to crack a smile when I give it a sniff. It's energizing, uplifting and totally unexpected. The second is my solid perfume locket necklace. This item is brand spankin' new and I plan to have it ready for purchase just in time for the Maker Mart.

Humble Hive Homemade

What did you want to be when you grew up?

I wanted to be a veterinarian. I'm not too far off, however, as I live on a 5-acre Sustainable Family Farm with chickens, ducks, pigs and will welcome goats as well in the Spring! 

Humble Hive Homemade
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Humble Hive Homemade

What is your creative process?

I'm passionate about replacing items people use everyday with toxin-free upgrades. And so, I'm constantly looking for new ideas. Once I stumble upon something that excites me, I'm like a dog with a bone and go into hyperdrive; formulating the perfect blend of ingredients and finding the most sustainable packaging solution.

Humble Hive Homemade

What advice would you give yourself 10 years ago?

Follow your gut. It will prove spot on. Trends, "safe" paths, and monetary wealth don't hold a candle to following your passion.

Humble Hive Homemade

Why is it important to support local artists & makers?

As a society, we've become so disconnected from how products are made and as such, see nearly everything as disposable. This has led to shortcuts which are costly to our overall well being. Each time we spend a dollar, we are casting a vote. In casting a vote for a local artist and maker, we are supporting fervent passion that is sure to enrich and inspire future generations.

Humble Hive Homemade

Why do you love doing what you do?

Humble hive Homemade allows me to feed nearly all of my internal, hungry, "passion monsters." I'm able to tinker in the kitchen with recipes for hours on end until I find just the perfect blend of ingredients. I'm able to photograph each item and pour love into writing the description for it in my online store. I'm able to feed the need for a pleasing aesthetic in designing each product label and finding the perfect, sustainable container for my new concoctions. I'm able to feed the desire to nurture others by offering products that will enrich others' lives and bring a smile to their face. And finally, I can rest easy at night knowing that I'm doing my part to care for our planet so that our children can have a place to call home.

Humble Hive Homemade

What advice do you have for other women who want to start their own businesses?

Follow your passion. Find the "thing" that keeps you awake at night; the thing that ties your stomach up in knots from excitement. Grab onto it and run. Create measurable, short-term goals that can be taken immediately so that you can begin to feel your excitement grow. You're bound to run into issues, but once you overcome them, your confidence will grow and you'll be ready for the next hurdle. Take the leap.

Humble Hive Homemade

What is your favorite thing about exploring Ohio?

I love the diversity in landscapes and people. You can get a little bit of everything you're craving here. If you want to hide away in the country and eat at a Mom and Pop restaurant, you can. If you want to dive into city nightlife and hit up a local brewery, Ohio has it. If it's hiking and wilderness you crave, you have countless places to choose from. I grew up wanting out of Ohio. Now, I can't imagine calling any other place "home."

Humble Hive Homemade

Meet Humble Hive Homemade at our 2017 Ohio Explored Holiday Maker Mart on December 3rd, 2017!

Bella Studio

Rikki Teeters

Bella Studio creates handmade jewelry, bags and accessories in Columbus, Ohio. We interviewed owner, Karla, to learn more about her Ohio Made business. Meet Bella Studio at our 2017 Ohio Explored Holiday Maker Mart on December 3rd!

Bella Studio

Tell us about your business.

My business is Bella Studio, naturally inspired jewelry and accessories handmade in my small studio in Columbus, Ohio. My collection features natural gemstones, leather, cowhide and hand-dyed fabrics are my passions. The process of putting my own personal style into my work is my favorite kind of expression. My philosophy is to live an artful life!

Bella Studio

What drew you to your craft?

In 2002, I took a jewelry class at a local bead shop. At the time I was picture framing as a hobby and raising my family. The class was my first experience making jewelry. The pure beauty of the crystals, gemstone and glass beads had me hooked! It was love at first sight and I haven't looked back.

Bella Studio

What is your favorite thing you have ever made?

I'd have to say my favorite pieces have been the ones with the most sentimental value attached. Jewelry that tells a story in small ways. I continue to add to a very chunky charm bracelet that I started years ago. Charms and found trinkets that remind me of special moments and milestones.

What did you want to be when you grew up?

In elementary school, I  wanted to be a nurse. That quickly changed the first time I visited a family friend in the hospital.

What is your creative process?

My creative process begins each day by just getting to work.  Picking up the tools, mixing the dye, measuring and cutting the leather. I usually bounce from one project to another depending on where the inspiration takes me. 

Bella Studio

What advice would you give yourself 10 years ago?

I'd tell myself the same thing I tell myself today: be brave, work hard and pursue your passion.

Bella Studio

Why is it important to support local artists & makers?

Supporting local artists encourages our own creativity and an appreciation of honest expression. It makes all of us stronger and more connected to buy and appreciate handmade.

Bella Studio

Why do you love doing what you do?

I love putting my style and my passion into my work. Creating is what I love to do! .

Bella Studio

What advice do you have for other women who want to start their own businesses?

Work hard, stay true to your mission, connect with other small business owners for resources and support and above all, be patient.

Bella Studio

What is your favorite thing about exploring Ohio?

Born and raised in Cleveland and spending the past 20 years in Columbus, I used to think Ohio was a little boring compared to the flashier cities and states. But that has all changed! I'm proud of the sense of community and connection I feel in the places I call home. I'm rediscovering the familiar and exploring Ohio with a new perspective. Being in my hometown on the east side of Cleveland and watching the sunset along the lake will never be ordinary!

Bella Studio

Meet Bella Studio at our 2017 Ohio Explored Holiday Maker Mart on December 3rd, 2017!

Skinfoodie

Rikki Teeters

Skinfoodie creates handmade organic skincare products in Vandalia, Ohio. We interviewed owner, Aubrey, to learn more about her local business and her eco-friendly focus. Meet Skinfoodie at our 2017 Ohio Explored Holiday Maker Mart on December 3rd!

Skin Foodie

Tell us about your business.

Skinfoodie is a beauty revolution! A brand about education and the awareness of ingredients and wellness. I am Aubrey,  the founder and sole maker and believe in beauty with purpose. Every ingredient is from nature and will positively impact your skin and benefit your well-being. 

Skin Foodie

What drew you to your craft?

When I was twelve I boiled beets and used them to stain fabrics. I looked at my hands and noticed the beautiful color that was left behind...beets inspired my first lip balm "Gimme a Beet', which was also my first trademark. I have always had a love for food and at a young age I began experiementing with oats, oils, avocados and most super foods! I felt a strong urge to heal my skin with the same foods that helped the inside of my body. I fell in love with all things beauty but struggled to find products that were simple. Without synthetic ingredients and fragrance.  I longed to find a clean beauty product and when I couldn't, I started to make my own. I have a strong connection to food and helping people and sharing what I have found has helped me.

Skin Foodie

What is your favorite thing you have ever made?

Ahhhh, I can't answer that, I love it all! I ask myself a very similar question,"If you could only use one product, what would it be?". The answer is my deodorant. If I HAD to, and I mean had to live without all of my products then yes, I would beg and plead to keep my deodorant. The armpits are such an amazing part of the lymphatic system. For me, it was also a very scary part of my body. I developed large nodes in my left armpit and I knew I had to find a cleaner deodorant. After trying every product I could get my hands on I decided to make my own. After a little over a year and a half of trial and error and almost perfects, I created a beautifully whipped blend of butters, oils and probiotics...and it works! After having enlarged nodes for three years, they are gone. I am extremely proud of every product and the benefits they provide to so many people facing scary things. It is an incredible feeling knowing I am able to help. From conception to production it is me. 

Skin Foodie

What did you want to be when you grew up?

I wanted to travel the world and feed people.  Which in a way...I'm doing. Feeding skin.  I really was never sure what I wanted to be when I grew up but always saw myself as a Mother.

Skin Foodie

What is your creative process?

My mind never stops. I am just now learning how to silence my thoughts to sleep. Ideas, words and phrases come to me as my head hits the pillow. I keep a notebook on my night stand and some mornings I wake and think...I wrote that? When I can't find a notebook, I voice text myself.  From that idea, I research and research and then get to work creating and making.  Everything from the ingredients, packaging and design.  I am constantly observing colors in nature, textures, the truly experiencing even the foods I consume. 

Skin Foodie

What advice would you give yourself 10 years ago?

This one is a tough one. I remember feeling so restless. Searching for purpose. I remember feeling inadequate when I would see others who just appeared to have it all figured out. I would tell myself to be present. Be patient and be kind. I have witnessed others acheive at the expense of others. I am very proud to say...that's not me. 

Skin Foodie

Why is it important to support local artists & makers?

Not only is it important to support local artist and makers but it is important to establish a relationship with whomever is receptive. We are in this together. We share passion and we know the struggle. I take pride in being apart of such an amazing movement and truly admire the beauty in the process of the craft.

Skin Foodie

Why do you love doing what you do?

I am in love with what I do. Everyday is more than satisfying. I am healed everyday my hands scoop raw butters or sprinkle lavender flowers over the top of soap. It is a beautiful thing to submerse yourself in raw ingredients. Most importantly for me it is about helping and healing others. Skin conditions can be very painful emotionally and physically. My heart is full of touching stories and experiences my Skinfoodies and I have shared along this beautiful journey.

Skin Foodie

What advice do you have for other women who want to start their own businesses?

Trust yourself and go for it! Take those dreams and put pen to paper. I found that as soon as I write my thoughts on paper, I would formulate a plan to make it happen. Plus, those notes are so fun to see when reflecting back.

Skin Foodie

What is your favorite thing about exploring Ohio?

Oh OHIO. I am in love with you. I really never fully appreciated Ohio's beauty until I traveled near and far exploring Ohio. The beauty in the changing seasons, the fields, the hills and the caves is worth exploring every inch of Ohio. My most memorable moments are experiencing Ohio with my four children.

Skin Foodie

Meet Skinfoodie at our 2017 Ohio Explored Holiday Maker Mart on December 3rd, 2017!

HandHeld & Co.

Rikki Teeters

HandHeld & Co. creates handmade art & stationary in Columbus, Ohio. We interviewed owner, Isabella, to learn more about her amazing small business. Meet HandHeld & Co. at our 2017 Ohio Explored Holiday Maker Mart on December 3rd!

HandHeld & Co.

Tell us about your business.

HandHeld & Co. is an art and stationery business based in Columbus OH. My designs are influenced by nature and the simple things in life. I love houseplants and also work in a greenhouse, so this inspires much of my work as well! HandHeld was created to draw people back to the simple act of showing thoughtfulness by handwriting a note to someone. HandHeld also supports survivors of human trafficking by donating a portion of profits to a local organization.

HandHeld & Co.

What drew you to your craft?

I have always loved to be creative, but painting has always been near to my heart since I practically grew up with a paint brush in my hand. There is something so natural, calming, and raw about putting pigment on blank paper and watching a little world unfold. 

HandHeld & Co.

What is your favorite thing you have ever made?

That is so hard! I always see the flaws in whatever I create, but at the moment, I really like my yucca painting, and saguaro with purple prickly pear painting, both of which have become cards designs. 

HandHeld & Co. Yucca

What did you want to be when you grew up?

An artist, always, but I went through a phase where I wanted to be a zookeeper! 

HandHeld & Co.

What is your creative process?

I usually start with some sort of photo or plant I like, then sketch it out in a sketch book to see if it is something I want to paint. Once I decide on something I want to continue, sometimes I redo the same painting over and over until I am somewhat happy with it. Lately, I have been trying to finish the first painting all the way and then determine if it’s good, instead of painting the same thing half-way three times!

HandHeld & Co.

What advice would you give yourself 10 years ago?

Practice strengthens creativity.

HandHeld & Co.

Why is it important to support local artists & makers?

We do what we do because we love it! Money is rarely the first thing on an artist's mind, and this allows them to treat their business and others with more kindness. The more we support one another and prove that success is possible, the more confidence we give others to pursue what makes their soul feel alive. 

HandHeld & Co.

Why do you love doing what you do?

There is such a joy that comes from watching your work and idea begin to come together and finally flourish. It is also satisfying and encouraging when other people get excited about this business I have poured my heart into. 

What advice do you have for other women who want to start their own businesses?

Nurture the creativity God has placed in each of us. The voice of an artist is important, and having your own business allows you to be heard.

HandHeld & Co.

What is your favorite thing about Exploring Ohio?

I love all the hidden gems we have, the shops you find when you would least expect. The small businesses in Ohio seem to be thriving right now, and it is always so fun to connect with other creative individuals.

HandHeld & Co.

Meet HandHeld & Co. at our 2017 Ohio Explored Holiday Maker Mart on December 3rd, 2017!

Smartfish

Rikki Teeters

Smartfish creates handmade footwear in Cincinnati, Ohio! We interviewed owner, Regina, to learn more about her unique small business. Meet Smartfish at our 2017 Ohio Explored Holiday Maker Mart on December 3rd!

Smartfish Handmade Moccasins

Tell us about your business.

I do sustainable footwear that's made where you walk. Each pair of shoes is crafted from upcycled and sustainable materials. Since these are primarily made to order, we have the unique opportunity to create a style that suits each customer and adjust the fit of those shoes to their feet. No two feet are the same—not even your own! Straight sizing is a profitable invention of the industrial revolution.

The story behind the name is one I happen to explain pretty often. At first glance, it seems to have nothing to do with shoes! But the name expresses the mentality behind the shoes— the whole point of what I do. It's based on that myth that a goldfish remembers only eight seconds of its past. As beings with a wider consciousness, we bear the responsibility of a conscience. We can understand the impact of our actions and shape our lives accordingly. 

Smartfish

What drew you to your craft?

I love to make beautiful, useful things. But the reason why I keep at this work which is sometimes repetitive—cut after cut, stitch after stitch—is because I truly believe in the mission. I had been making shoes for years before I learned that fashion is the planet's second most polluting industry. Whoa. Part of fashion's impact is how garments are made, and part is how we are culturally conditioned to buy many cheaply made things instead of fewer, lasting quality pieces. In America, the average item of women's clothing is worn only seven times before it's thrown out.

I do love refining my craft. I do find joy in making things well. But I keep at it because I believe it's important to change the culture around how we purchase and use garments.

Smartfish

What is your favorite thing you have ever made?

When I was in school for industrial design, I dreamed up and manufactured a line of lighting that also grew air cleansing plants. It was meant to create sacred space in the home for meditation, unwinding, prayer, and safe conversation. It was pretty badass. But honestly the most recent pair of shoes I made is usually my favorite creation.

Smartfish

What did you want to be when you grew up?

I wanted to be either an artist or an inventor. As a designer, I've found space for both!

Smartfish Cincinnati

What is your creative process?

Try, try again! I sketch out a doodle and then go straight to 3D where I start building, analyzing, and building again. None of my designs are ever really finished. Instead of pretending I have no room to grow, pitching this years designs at the end of the season, and chasing new trends for next year, I'll probably be releasing an updated and improved design next year.

Smartfish

What advice would you give yourself 10 years ago?

Your creativity isn't a side thing you have to find extra side space for in your life. It can be your center.

Smartfish Cincinnati

Why is it important to support local artists & makers?

I think so often we blame ourselves exclusively for the negative impact that fashion has on the planet. But it's not just us! It's this machine of industrial commerce that tells us we'll never be enough on our own, tells us we need more and more and more, and makes us believe that the solution to all our problems is another purchase. Then that industry is shady about the impacts of those purchases and the involvement of vulnerable people and ecosystems along the way. I do not mean to discount the "big fashion" exceptions that are out there. I'm speaking broadly about the general bend of the market.

I think it's important to support local makers because they will be transparent and kind in a way that the industry often won't. I hope to create a relationship between me, the maker, and you, the buyer. You have real options for sustainable and local products and I am honest with you about what it took in labor and materials to create them.

Smartfish Cincinnati Market

Why do you love doing what you do?

Meeting people at fleas and markets, watching their faces light up when they connect with the product, and creating something that's made especially to suit their style and needs—that's what keeps me going.

Smartfish Cincinnati

What advice do you have for other women who want to start their own businesses?

You're not going to be the perfect partner, the perfect business owner, and the perfect parent every day. Those are my major categories but they'll be different for you. You fill in the blanks. I think as women especially we feel the pressure to be full time parents, full time homemakers, full time business owners, and have a good outfit on to boot. It's just crazy.

Some days I'm entirely focused on being with my daughter and watching her grow and learn. Other days, she watches some shows on my laptop while I sit at my desk and stay present to my work. Some days I focus on loving and supporting my partner. Other days he's focused on loving and supporting me. Some days I make lovely organic food and some days we eat takeout. When I expect 110% percent of myself in every area of life every day, I'm only setting myself up for shattered expectations and feelings of crushing failure. I can't say I've learned this entirely yet, but I am learning to extend grace to myself and look at the big picture rather than exclusively today.

Smartfish

What is your favorite thing about exploring Ohio?

We live in Over-the-Rhine in Cincinnati. I'm not an Ohio native, and one of my favorite things about exploring Ohio has been getting to know all the alleyways and murals and overlooked corners of my city! Cities in Ohio have quality arts and culture, but they're accessibly priced enough that young entrepreneurs can still live here and make it theirs. There's a way I've been able to get to know the quiet little corners of my city because I live here, walk here, shop here, take the bus here...it's my home.

Smartfish Cincinnati

Meet Smartfish at our Ohio Explored Holiday Maker Mart!

H&B

Rikki Teeters

H&B creates handmade candles and natural self-care products in Cincinnati, Ohio! We interviewed owner, Gabrielle, about her local business. Meet H&B at our 2017 Ohio Explored Holiday Maker Mart on December 3rd!

H&B

Tell us about your business.

When I started H&B back in January when I was at a very vulnerable place in my life. Before starting this business I worked in a hospital as an RN working 12 hour shifts, and it was hard. Being a floor RN is not only physically draining, it is also emotionally draining. After working on a high paced oncology unit I started to realize that I was not enjoying life any more, I had lost weight, was experiencing chronic pain, and over all exhaustion. I went on medical leave and started the healing process.

Once my medical leave was over I had this overwhelming anxiety surrounding returning to work, at that point I felt it was best for my health and well-being to leave that job and pursue a different path. I turned to Pinterest for ideas. I stumbled upon a DIY for candle making and it peaked my interest. I quickly ordered all of the supplies I would need and there in my studio apartment I made my first candles. I loved the process! So I made a bunch of candles and took them to my family to see if they thought they were any good. They loved them! So right then and there I decided to start my own business.

I soon discovered I didn’t want to just sell candles; I wanted to have a larger purpose so once again I turned to Pinterest and once again Pinterest delivered. I found the DIY beauty category. So in January 2017, I launched H&B as a business that makes self care products. My first priority is to deliver quality natural self care products! There is so much thought that goes into each and every product to ensure its safety and quality. My goal is to create products that allow people to practice self-care from the comfort of their homes, and feel a little more restored after each use.

H&B

What drew you to your craft?

As a young child I loved making “concoctions” (as my parents called them). I would turn my bathroom sink into a bowl and fill it with mixtures of whatever body products I happened to have underneath my sink at the time. So when I decided to start this business I thought it was very fitting

H&B

What is your favorite thing you have ever made?

My favorite thing that I have ever made is my candle. I was the person who would never leave target without a candle in hand. So now that I get to scent my own candles I burn them all over the house! Every room has a candle!

H&B

What did you want to be when you grew up?

I wanted to be a chef. And this dream of mine has not died! I still want to go to culinary school even if it is just to improve my cooking skills at home.

H&B

What is your creative process?

There is a lot of trial and error. I usually try and hone in on what kind of scent/product I want to make and then make 2-3 variations of the scent/product. After testers are made I have people test them and give me feedback ( I also partake in the testing) Then I fine tune the recipes. After the product is finalized I design the labels and make sure that all of the details are near perfect!

H&B

What advice would you give yourself 10 years ago?

Never settle for less than what makes you happy.

H&B

Why is it important to support local artists & makers?

I think it is so very important to support local artists and makers because they are the people who care. Makers care about their community. There is a passion that drives makers that larger corporations don’t have. It is a passion to better their community through what they do, as only local makers can.

H&B

Why do you love doing what you do?

I love H&B because it gives my life purpose. A purpose that can help any one of any age to achieve peace and comfort in their lives.

What advice do you have for other women who want to start their own businesses?

You can do this! I don’t know how many times I say this simple phrase.

H&B

Meet H&B at our 2017 Ohio Explored Holiday Maker Mart on December 3rd!

H&B

Stitches & Sass

Rikki Teeters

Stitches & Sass creates handmade accessories for babies & pets. Meet Stitches & Sass at our 2017 Ohio Explored Holiday Maker Mart on December 3rd!

Stitches & Sass

Owner, Sharon, takes a playful approach to sewing and believes that baby & kids items should be fun and functional. She says, “I don’t ever want my quilts hung on a wall. They’re made to be used and to get dirty. Pretty much all of my accessories revolve around slobber.” We interviewed this local business owner to learn more about her story.

Stitches & Sass

What drew you to your craft?

I started quilting 19 years ago in college. A local quilt artist visited The Art Academy to present her work and I was very interested in the way she used fabric to “paint”. Her quilts seemed to come alive and didn’t look anything like the quilts I grew up with. I wanted another creative outlet other than the graphic design I was studying, so I bought a book and taught myself to quilt in the traditional method. Once I had the basics down, I made my first quilt. It was queen size, made completely by hand (no sewing machine!) and took me a year to make. I was hooked. That foundation developed into art quilting and then into modern functional baby quilts. I then created a line of items that were initially gifts for family and friends who recently had babies. I am also a huge dog lover, so creating items for pets was a natural progression.

Stitches & Sass

What is your favorite thing you have ever made?

Pretty much every time I buy fabric, it’s going to be my favorite thing. I’m obsessed with fabric and put a lot of thought into my stash. But if I had to pick one item, I recently made a toddler quilt for a client who wanted an overall ombre design. The design and fabric placement was challenging and fun! Every time I would look at the quilt, I saw different patterns and it was constantly changing.

What did you want to be when you grew up?

As a kid, I had these books where you traced fun letters to create your own fonts. I made posters and my own magazines. I didn’t know what it was called back then, but I became a graphic designer and did exactly what I wanted to do!

Stitches & Sass

What is your creative process?

All of my accessory patterns have already been designed by me, so I start by researching fabric and current fashion trends. For babies, I do not like sticking with the traditional “girl/boy” colors and try to incorporate fun fabrics that aren’t the norm. For pets, I think about fur color and try to choose colors and fabrics that are complementary. When making a quilt, I listen to what the client wants and design around that idea. I also provide samples of fabric to choose from. Sometimes I have freedom to design exactly what I want and sometimes the client works with me to get the quilt they are imagining.

Stitches & Sass
Stitches & Sass
Stitches & Sass

What advice would you give yourself 10 years ago?

1. Save.Your.Money. I never knew then that I would have a business. All of the money I spent on going out sure would come in handy right now…

2. I would also tell myself to not wait and just go for it! For so many years people urged me to sell my work and start a business. I lacked the confidence to do it then and could have gotten started a lot sooner.

3. Be yourself no matter what. Trying to fit into a mold of what someone else wants you to be really doesn’t work. You will never shine until you are your true self.

Stitches & Sass

Why is it important to support local artists & makers?

Even before creating my business, I’ve always thought it was important to shop local. Local artists & makers feed your community and make it grow! We bring in local and outside business and create a more unified city. You are also supporting your neighbor’s dream and passion instead of a large corporation.

Stitches & Sass

Why do you love doing what you do?

I love seeing the faces of people when they pick out something they love. It’s very satisfying when a client receives a custom order and it’s exactly what they expected. You wouldn’t believe how a dog bow-tie can make a person squeal. Sewing is also my therapy. It is the most stress reducing, anti-anxiety, thing I’ve ever done. I can go into my studio and sew all day and not even realize it’s been 8 hours. I hope I am able to sew until I’m at the age where I can’t remember my own name.

Stitches & Sass

What advice do you have for other women who want to start their own businesses?

Be professional but don’t take everything too seriously. Have fun with it!! Be willing to put everything into your business to make it successful. You have to love it or you can easily burn out. It’s a lot of giving up nights & weekends and not hanging out with friends; especially at first. But, if you love what you do, it is all worth it!! Also, become friends with other vendors. I have a wonderful group of friends that I have met at markets. Not only is it awesome to have friends who are like-minded, but you can bounce ideas off each other and be great resources for each other.

Stitches & Sass

What is your favorite thing about exploring Ohio?

I am an Ohio native and grew up in Cincinnati. Even in my own town, I find new things everyday. I lived in Houston for 5 years and during that time, Cincinnati went through a major redevelopment. When I moved back, it had transformed into a city that had so much more culture than before.

Stitches & Sass
Stitches & Sass

Meet Stitches & Sass at our Ohio Explored Holiday Maker Mart!

OBTlove

Rikki Teeters

OBTlove creates handmade headbands and accessories for little humans. We interviewed owner, Madison, to learn more about her small Ohio-made business. Meet OBTlove at our 2017 Ohio Explored Holiday Maker Mart on December 3rd!

OBTlove

Tell us about your business.

OBTlove (Our Baby Thompson Love), started in Hilton Head, SC while preparing to move back home to Cincinnati, OH. I started OBTlove when my first daughter was a few months old. We opted to not find out our baby’s gender during the pregnancy and referred to the baby as “Our Baby Thompson”. As soon as our (bald) daughter was born I wanted to accessorize her, but found such limited options that were mostly tacky and not my style. I started creating my own headbands for her to wear and had extra supplies so I began selling the designs, which led to a small, handmade business- OBTlove!

OBTlove

What drew you to your craft?

The need for unique, trendy, versatile, and stylish headbands for my baby girl that also didn’t cost me a fortune!

OBTlove

What is your favorite thing you have ever made?

I honestly love every piece I’ve made! Each new design is inspired by my daughters and what I want and need for them! As they change and grow, so have my designs.

OBTlove

What did you want to be when you grew up?

Growing up I wanted to be a special education teacher, which I was for several years before recently becoming a stay at home mom-boss and finally getting to focus more on OBTlove!

OBTlove

What is your creative process?

My creative process doesn’t exist with three kids under 4. I have a feel for what’s trendy and then design products that I love for my kids. My husband and I work on making the products several nights a week after bedtime, while watching TV shows! 

OBTlove

What advice would you give yourself 10 years ago?

There are GREAT plans for you. You can’t always see the big picture, so live each day purposefully without trying to gain control, because what’s in store is so much better than you can even imagine.

OBTlove

Why is it important to support local artists & makers?

By shopping locally you are allowing people to live out their dreams! You know where the items came from and that they were genuinely made with love and passion.

OBTlove

Why do you love doing what you do?

One of my favorite things is seeing photographs of beautiful children wearing the headbands that I made! I think because I know how much I love and cherish the images of my children, it makes me feel so honored to see that someone chose my product for their child to wear!

OBTlove

What advice do you have for other women who want to start their own businesses?

The best advice I have is... GO FOR IT! Why not at least try and see what happens? The worst case is you might be out a few dollars and a little time, but at least you tried. 

OBTlove

What is your favorite thing about exploring Ohio?

Ohio is so great! It is the best place to live and has the best people that live here! Ohio Explored highlights that and builds a community of people! 

OBTlove

Whirlybird Granola

Rikki Teeters

Whirlybird Granola is an all-natural, non-gmo, gluten-free, vegan granola made by hand in small batches in Cincinnati, Ohio. Each batch is sweetened with an Ohio pure maple syrup and organic agave nectar. Meet Whirlybird Granola at our 2017 Ohio Explored Holiday Maker Mart on December 3rd!

Whirlybird Granola

Tell us about your business.

We are Whirlybird Granola, located in Cincinnati, OH. My name is Christy White, and I started this business out of my kitchen in 2011 out of a love of granola and a passion for health. I could not find any granolas that did not have adders, fillers, artificial flavors, or high sugar content. So, I decided to make my own. I tried lots of different combinations, ingredients, and techniques to come up with what we have now. Shortly after creating these recipes, I found out I was pregnant with twin boys, which continue to serve as my inspiration. This is reflected on the front of our packaging. There are two birds that form the shape of a heart. These boys and my daughter are my heart and serve as a daily inspiration to be better everyday.

After having the boys, I left my corporate job to be take care of my kids and pursue a life of granola full time. It has truly been a whirl wind ever since. We have grown from selling at markets to selling at Whole Foods, Kroger, Giant Eagle, Remke, and many other amazing local grocery stores, coffee shops, ice cream/smoothie shops and boutiques. I have gone from making granola in my kitchen to renting space where my family would spend hours after their full time jobs to help me make our granola.

Now we are using a commercial facility with our same small batch process in order to be able to produce more. Whirlybird has always been and continues to be a product from the heart, made with love. We truly hope that everyone is able to taste that in every bite. All of our granola is certified gluten-free, Non-GMO Project Verified, and Vegan. Each batch is sweetened with Ohio Pure Maple Syrup and Organic Agave Nectar. It is made by hand in small batches to ensure that homemade taste that we all know and love. 

Whirlybird Granola

What drew you to your field?

I love health, nutrition, and of course granola. I have always love finding foods that are good for you and nourish your body. That is why I loved granola, but when I could not find any granola that was really good for you, I knew there was a need that I could fill.

Whirlybird Granola

What is your favorite thing you have ever made?

Oh, I love our Original flavor granola. It is the flavor that I started with and full of pistachios, pumpkin seeds, sunflower seeds and cranberries. It really is the perfect combination. I look to top my sweet potatoes with a little almond butter and Original Flavor granola. It is so yummy!

Whirlybird Granola

What did you want to be when you grew up?

I really wanted to be a dietician, but when I was in college I dropped out because chemistry was so difficult. Can you believe that?!? Fortunately, now I feel like I am still able to make an impact on people’s health with my granola.

Whirlybird Granola

What is your creative process?

I really love to bake and have always loved that. I also love grocery stores, so I will just walk around the grocery looking for inspiration with flavors, spices, and unique new items. I am usually just buying crazy items at the grocery and bringing them in to the kitchen. Some of them are winners and others aren’t.

Photo by @ohsothymely

Photo by @ohsothymely

What advice would you give yourself 10 years ago?

Oh gosh. I have made a lot of mistakes, but I don’t think I would change anything. Those are what I have learned from the most. But my mom always told me and I would tell myself the same thing: do not to borrow worry. It’s really not worth it. I have spent a lot of time worrying, but all of that worry does not change anything.

Photo by @servingupsimplicity

Photo by @servingupsimplicity

Why is it important to support local artists & makers?

There are so many local artists and makers making amazing things and supporting their families doing it. Buyers are truly making a difference when they buy from a local artist/maker. I always say that every bag of granola counts. And I feel truly connected and grateful to those buyers. It is all about the connection for local artists and makers. We want to feel connected to you and vice versa. When you buy from us, you are truly buying a little piece of us.

Granola

Why do you love doing what you do?

I love connecting with people with similar passions, interests, and love of delicious and quality food. It’s my favorite part of what I do!

Whirlybird Granola

What advice do you have for other women who want to start their own businesses?

Have confidence! You can do it! And don’t be afraid to ask for help. I had/have a very hard time with this. But there are so many wonderful people that have been through it before and would love to help. I have learned so much from so many other amazing men and women. People want to share their experiences and advice, and a lot of it is great advice.

Whirlybird Granola Ohio

Meet Whirlybird Granola at our Ohio Explored Holiday Maker Mart!

Ginger Bee

Rikki Teeters

Ginger Bee Limited: Artfully Crafted Beeswax Products creates handmade candles in Norwood, Ohio. We interviewed owner, Amanda, about her small business and the meaning behind it. Meet Ginger Bee at our 2017 Ohio Explored Holiday Maker Mart on December 3rd!

Ginger Bee Cincinnati Ohio

Tell us about your business.

A few years back, I was working on my beekeeper cousin’s annual honey-harvest crew; we were driving back from a bee yard to the honey house, and we hatched the plan for Ginger Bee. I heard myself say, “Yes! I’m going to start a business using our beeswax!” Ginger Bee's mission is to offer beautiful, high-quality, practical beeswax home-goods.

Ginger Bee Cincinnati Ohio

What drew you to your craft?

Ginger Bee exists because I needed a creative physical way to express myself, I have access to large quantities of beeswax through my cousin's beekeeping business, and beeswax is an amazingly beautiful substance to work with and to consume.

Ginger Bee Beeswax Candle Holiday

What is your favorite thing you have ever made?

My favorite candle that I produce is a light-bulb candle, which I pour using the very first candle mold I ever made. It's ironic... burning the thing that replaced the need for candles. Get it?!

Ginger Bee

What did you want to be when you grew up?

I wanted to be an architect.

Ginger Bee

What is your creative process?

I walk though life evaluating whether every-day objects would make a good candle shape. Where is it's center of gravity? Could I choose the perfect wick for that shape so that little-to-no beeswax is wasted when the candle is burned? If I find it entertaining or charming, but would anyone else?

Ginger Bee

Why is it important to support local artists & makers?

Firstly, local artists and makers can choose to provide art and products that, in-turn, support other local vendors. In this way, there are many layers of individuals and businesses who financially benefit from successful local artists and vendors. Secondly, local artists and makers often offer a fresh, innovative, or alternative view the world; as they live in their neighborhoods and communities and work locally at small and large businesses, they enhance the atmosphere and help maintain a balanced social dialogue. Artists need accountants and car mechanics... car mechanics need artists and accountants... yes, and I realize that many mechanics are also artist. You get my point, though, right?

Ginger Bee

Why do you love doing what you do?

Candle-making is a very methodical and meditative process. Much of my other work in life is based on analyzing, interpreting, teaching and discussing. I enjoy making candles because I can go an entire session of candle-making and not have to explain anything to anyone.

Ginger Bee

What advice do you have for other women who want to start their own businesses?

Do it. Start your business. There are many women AND men out there who are willing to mentor you. Our mid-west culture has trained women see men as default decision-makers, approvers, and risk-takers, but this is a pretense that all of us, women and men, are learning to discard. Utilize your network of female business leaders, but don't miss out on working with men. ...and celebrate the little accomplishments, even if that's just opening your business's Instagram account and consistently posting for 30 days. 

Ginger Bee

What is your favorite thing about exploring Ohio?

The cost of living. I was born and raised in Northern Ohio and, after having lived in Japan and India, have lived in Cincinnati for over ten years. It be may be a bit more challenging to discover, but Ohio holds so many interesting people, traditions, landscapes, and movements... and it's so cheap! I recently stayed in Boston for a few months and returned to Ohio with a grateful heart for my ability to afford a rich life in Cincinnati without having to work my ass off.

Ginger Bee Hive Wax
Ginger Bee

Meet Ginger Bee at our Ohio Explored Holiday Maker Mart!

Gia & The Blooms

Rikki Teeters

Gia & The Blooms is a curated fresh floral market in the Over-the-Rhine neighborhood of Cincinnati. We interviewed owner, Yulia, about her local business. Meet Gia & The Blooms at our 2017 Ohio Explored Holiday Maker Mart on December 3rd!

Gia & The Blooms

Tell us about your background and your local business.

Gia and the Bloom's home is a cozy store front at 114 E. 13th St in Over-the-Rhine. Brown Bear Bakery and Longfellow's are our closest neighbors. The operation is named after my rescue pit bull Gia and we donate part of the proceeds to the rescue that Gia is from.

Gia & The Blooms

What drew you to your craft?

I grew up in Europe where flower gifting is a lot more common and there's a flower kiosk on every corner. Someone always brings fresh flowers to the house and you continually have a flower arrangement on your dining table. I've been arranging flowers for as long as I can remember. When we moved to Over-the-Rhine, I was surprised to see that there wasn't a single flower shop with reasonable retail hours and selection so when our future shop space became available I jumped at the chance.

Gia & The Blooms

What is your favorite thing you have ever made?

I love making bridal bouquets and the last one that I make is always my favorite, until I make another one, that is, and then it becomes my new favorite.

Gia & The Blooms

What did you want to be when you grew up?

I never felt a strong calling towards a particular profession but I was always equally curious in arts and sciences and so I have two degrees, one in art and one in science.

Gia & The Blooms

What is your creative process?

A cup of strong black coffee and a current favorite song on repeat. I always take my time. Flower arranging can get very messy fast and I'm picking up and cleaning every 5 minutes, otherwise I loose site of what I'm doing.

Gia & The Blooms

What advice would you give yourself 10 years ago?

A step back / a break is not necessarily bad. Sometimes you need to detach to see a bigger perspective.

Gia & The Blooms

Why is it important to support local artists & makers?

When you support a local artist you invest into the vibrancy and the diversity of your community. Local makers are initially a backbone and heart of every neighborhood and Over-the-Rhine has been so so great to us. People are very kind and supportive here and we are now lucky to call many of our customers dear friends.

Gia & The Blooms Over The Rhine

Why do you love doing what you do?

There are few things more soothing than being surrounded by flowers and plants, it's hard not to enjoy taking care of plants and arranging flowers. But also seeing our customers' eyes light up when they get a beautiful arrangement from us or a bride getting giddy with excitement over her wedding flowers is priceless. We also meet a lot of really cool industry people.

Gia & The Blooms

What advice do you have for other women who want to start their own businesses?

Ask for help, collaborations and advice from other local business owners, especially when you are just starting out.

Gia & The Blooms

What is your favorite thing about exploring Ohio?

There's always more to see and the scenery changes with the season. I love how green and hilly Ohio is, at least the part where we are, and there's always a beautiful view hiding around the corner. Hocking Hills with it's fern-filled trails is fantastic.

Gia & The Blooms
Gia & The Blooms
Gia & The Blooms

Meet Gia & The Blooms at our Ohio Explored Holiday Maker Mart!

Little Sky Stone

Rikki Teeters

Little Sky Stone is a jewelry brand based in Columbus, Ohio. Designer, Liang Xia, creates minimalist pieces with ethically sourced materials. The name "Little Sky Stone" is inspired by turquoise, also known as the ‘fallen sky stone’ for it’s lush, blue hue. Meet Little Sky Stone at our 2017 Ohio Explored Holiday Maker Mart on December 3rd!

Little Sky Stone

Tell us about your background and your local business.

Little Sky Stone was founded in 2015 in Columbus, Ohio. My interest of collecting stones and drawing them had started from a young age. During a college trip, I traveled to Hubei Province, which is located in the southwest region of China. After the trip, my inspiration sparked even further when introduced to the beauty of turquoise and the rich history behind the stone. Turquoise is is believed to bring health and protection when worn.

When I moved to the U.S. in 2011, I discovered that turquoise was popular here. I did some research and found out that most of the turquoise stones are made into Native American-inspired jewelry. From a cross-cultural perspective, I designed a few pieces of turquoise jewelry that incorporated modern Chinese elements in them. My friends loved how different they were from what was seen on the market. My pieces were simple, modern and minimalistic. With their encouragement, I started Little Sky Stone designing and selling turquoise jewelry. I met Chao Song, my business partner, who was operating his own silver business at the time. We realized we both had the same set of values within our businesses and both had the drive to promote traditional Chinese silver making skills. Since then, we have merged our business together and expanded our product line. Our mission is to incorporate Chinese elements into our designs and create a line that shares the authenticity and inspiration of oriental craft from old to new.

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Picture 2.jpg

What drew you to your craft?

I have always loved drawing, designing and being creative. I am a fan of living a minimal lifestyle. When I first moved to the United States, I only brought two suitcases with me. In my first two years here, I moved three times between Cincinnati and Columbus, and each time, packed those suitcases and was ready to go. That minimalist concept is incorporated into all my designs and I see it as a way of expressing myself.

Little Sky Stone

What is your favorite thing you have ever made?

I think the Ohio ring we have is one of my favorites. It is a simple design of an arrow wrapping around your finger. Ohio means a lot to me- it’s where I went to school, where I got my first house and my first job. It is my home in the U.S.

Little Sky Stone

What did you want to be when you grew up?

I wanted to be an artist when I was growing up. I had attended art classes after school for 10 years. When I graduated from high school, I had to put my dreams aside and study a major that I could easily find a job in. Being an artist is extremely hard in China, most artists cannot make a living out of it. I am very glad that now I am able to start this business and show off my passion!

Little Sky Stone

What is your creative process?

I love visiting museums and collecting any ideas that can be used in my designs. A lot of my designs come from a concept, for instance, the Chinese philosophy of Yinyang. When a design pops into my head, I’ll write it down and draw it for reference later.

Little Sky Stone

What advice would you give yourself 10 years ago?

The advice I would give myself is always to be brave, keep trying new things, challenge myself and embrace as many cultures as I can.

Little Sky Stone

Why is it important to support local artists & makers?

As a millennial growing up in China, I saw a lot of local artists and makers give up their dream to get a better job in order to make a living. While on my college trip, I met a couple in Guizhou Province. They have been silversmiths who create pieces using traditional silver-making skills.They told me that in their village, fewer people are choosing to be silversmiths due to financial trouble and they have to find jobs in the city. They are concerning that silver-making skills will be lost in this generation. I feel that it is extremely important to support local artists and makers, for it supports them, their communities and more artists can continue to pursue their dreams.

Little Sky Stone

Why do you love doing what you do?

I love designing, being creative and help people choosing their favorite pieces of jewelry. I love the challenges that come with a business and working to make things right.

Little Sky Stone

What advice do you have for other people who want to start their own businesses?

My advice to anyone who wants to start their own business is to go for it and start something first, even if you cannot see a promising future at the moment. If you wait until you think you have the perfect business plan, you may have already missed the perfect opportunity. Try it out and see what happens!

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What is your favorite thing about exploring Ohio?

I love how Columbus has grown so much from when I first moved here five years ago to now. There are so many new businesses, shops and restaurants that have popped up. I love walking around in the Short North area, Grandeview and the revamped area of downtown Dublin. When I am exploring Ohio, I can always find something new and interesting.

Little Sky Stone

Meet Little Sky Stone at our Ohio Explored Holiday Maker Mart!