This week's first featured shop is CM Creole Creations! Owner Meghan resides in New Orleans and designs unique handmade clutches, purses and bags. I love Meghan's creations because of how bold they are are while also maintaining a confident simplicity. When I learned she not only designs and sews all the bags herself, but actually makes all her own material, I was even more impressed!
|Small Tote Bag - Large Polka Dots|
MS: Hi, my name is Meghan Satter, and I am the designer/owner of CM Creole Creations. I live in the New Orleans area with my boyfriend and our miniature dachshund, Delacroix. I'm a full-time student at the University of New Orleans with a major in History, concentrating on New Orleans history. If I were able to minor in German, I probably would. When I'm not working on new designs or sewing (which is rare), I can usually be found reading or outside in my ever growing vegetable garden.
|Handmade Purse - Black and White - Small|
CM: When and how did you start sewing? Did someone teach you?
MS: While my profile on Etsy says I first started sewing in high school, I really started sewing at the age of 7. My mother took her sewing machine out to hem a pair of pants and I asked her if I could make some pajamas for my panda bear. She of course said yes, and showed me how to use the sewing machine while she worked the foot petal. When I reached junior high, I was placed in the Home Ec. class by mistake. Since there were no other electives open, I was stuck in this class that I really didn't want to be in. However, this turned out to be the best mistake because I was taught the fundamentals of sewing and design.
|Sunglass Case - Red and White|
CM: I noticed you make all your materials by hand. How long does it take you to make a piece to sell? What's the process like? Your workspace?
MS: The amount of time really depends on the piece. My larger bags can take up to 24 hours, while the smaller cosmetic bags usually take 2 to 2.5 hours.
The process of making a piece can be very frustrating. When I see a design in my head, I want to rush to my work area and start creating it. However, I first have to draw out the design, then figure out the sizing and materials that will be used. After making a layout, I make a pattern on tracing paper - which can sometimes come out wrong. After cutting out the pattern with the fabric, I start marking specific areas that need darts, pleats, etc. When that's all done, I can start sewing the piece.
My work space is located in my former dining room - it was never used anyway. I added shelves for storage and made a large paper mache "C" and "M" to give it a more "this is my office" look. I try to be a tidy sewer, but in reality, 1 minute after I clean and straighten everything, it looks like a tornado came through. It also doesn't help that my "helper", Delacroix, loves to play with the fabric scraps that fall to the floor.
|Cosmetic Bag - Green - Floral Print - Faux Leather|
CM: What's the best thing about selling on Etsy? The most challenging?
MS: I would first like to say that I am thrilled that I found Etsy and I am able to sell my items there. If it weren't for Etsy, I don't know where I would be selling or if I would be selling my items. The best thing about selling on Etsy is that I am able to put something out there that I put my heart into and having other people buy and heart it. It gives me so much gratification knowing that others like my creations.
I have two big things that I find challenging with selling on Etsy. The first one being that potential customers aren't able to feel and hold my items before buying - obviously this isn't something that can be solved on Etsy. The second challenge is getting my store noticed. There are numerous talented purse makers on Etsy, so making my items stand out can be challenging.
|Pleated Clutch - Navy Blue - Polka Dot|
CM: What's your favorite item from your own shop right now?
MS: Tough question! While I love all the items in my shop because I feel they reflect my style, I have two favorite items: The Pleated Clutch and the Zig Zag Foldover Clutch. I love navy blue and the texture of the fabric for both pieces. I also love that the foldover clutch can also be used as a tote.
|Foldover Clutch - Tote - Navy Blue - Zig Zag|
CM: Do you have a favorite shop or item on Etsy? If so, which one(s)?
MS: I could probably write a short book on my favorite items, there's so many. But my 3 favorite items are this Woven Merino Wool Blanket, this Dupioni Silk Bolero, and this Simple Pearl Necklace.
|Foldover Clutch - Tote - Zig Zag - Black and White - Chevron|
Thank you, Meghan! I have some more great shops lined up this week... stay tuned!!