A little over a month ago I won a giveaway hosted by Caroline of In Due Time that was for store credit at ShutterTotes. This shop sells stylish and protective camera bags, and to say I was thrilled is an understatement! I’m a bit paranoid about just having my DSLR out without some sort of protection, but the bulky and boring bag we got from the electronics store just wasn’t cutting it. I instantly fell in love with my pretty, spacious and functional bag (there’s room for my personal items too!), and knew I had to feature the gracious Lynn and her store for my Small Shop Spotlight!
1. Tell me a little bit about yourself (family, interests, hobbies, etc).
I am a mom of 4 but now an empty nester. I love to read and am never without a book going. I have always been a type A personality and am not one to sit around, but I am working on relaxing more as I get older. I love to DIY and repurpose, and got this “bug” from my parents who were always making things and redecorating or fixing things. I have great memories of growing up with my mom letting me pick out a new paint color for my room or a bedspread to redecorate while she made curtains to match, etc. My dad could-and still can-fix everything. They were probably just being frugal but it instilled in me a love of not throwing things out and seeking out a less expensive way to do something while making a house a home. I believe we should be wise stewards of the resources we are given. I LOVE a bargain and try to pass the savings on to my customers to keep my prices low so they can get something functional and beautiful but at an affordable price.
2. When did you open your shop and why?
I opened my shop by happenstance in 2012. I was running around multitasking as moms generally do, and had put my sons football on the stairs to take up the next time I went. I carried a full laundry basket down and slipped on the ball and ended up fracturing my heel. Since I am a mail carrier I was off work for many months without pay. My oldest daughter had just gotten married and my middle daughter was living on her own for the first time. We were all tightening our belts financially so when Christmas rolled around we decided to do a “handmade” Christmas. The creativity was amazing and is still one of my favorite Christmas exchanges. Even the men got into it. My husband made bath salts and my son in law made a fishing pole holder, a fish cleaning table, and did some paintings. Beautiful things and it still blows me away. One of my girls carried her camera everywhere at the time and a purse, but didn’t want to carry two bags. The camera was always just out and about not protected. I decided to make her and another photographer friend a combo purse/camera bag and they went over well. Since I was not working at the time but I could still sit and sew, I decided to list a few on Etsy and they kept selling out. I have since refined them quite a bit but I love to look back on those early bags and see how far I’ve come.
3. Do you have a favorite place or subject you like to photograph?
I am not a photographer but my husband is. He takes beautiful nature photos but my favorite subject is people, especially family.
4. What’s your favorite part about being a small shop owner?
I love creating these bags! I have not gotten burned out or bored with this in the least. I really like to pick each fabric liner and imagine the personality of the lady who will be carrying it. There are so many different combinations. Classic, fun, boho, bright and bold, etc. I like to collaborate with customers on custom bags and sending them fabric pictures to choose from to create something special for them or as a gift. I have shipped these all of the world and to me that is just so special that something my hands made are reaching out to others and sort of joining us in some small way. I still get butterflies every time a new review comes in hoping the person just looooves it!!
5. Do you have a favorite bag (don’t worry, we won’t tell the others 😄)?
They are all my favorites! Seriously, I just keep thinking ok, this one’s my favorite and then the next one comes along…I guess that’s what keeps me going and getting up at 4 am to sew.
I absolutely love getting to know the creative person behind such amazing products. Don’t you?!
Lynn is generously offering an exclusive 15% off discount to my readers that will be good through July 4th! She doesn’t do this often, so don’t miss your chance to save!! Use code ‘ministermom15‘ when checking out of her Etsy store,
and for all you Amazon lovers, you can also find her here!!