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Shops That Shine - Suite One Studios

Wednesday, November 30, 2011

{ Hello! I am thrilled to take a break from all the hustle & bustle to share a truly lovely shop today.  Lindsay from Suite One Studios is as authentic as it gets...not to mention she's chock full of talent! }

I love hearing where makers draw their inspiration from, can you share with us where you find yours?
I find inspiration just about anywhere. I keep myself open to exploring inspiration anywhere my eyes or hands may linger. I want my pottery to be enjoyed both visually and tactilely and because of this I am always considering pottery as I enjoy my world. Nature presents one of the greatest sources for inspiration, perhaps in part because of the medium itself- clay. I love simple, understated elegance and find myself drawn to clean modern lines and organic imperfections. My color palette and forms reflect a delicate balance between the colorful commercial world and the softer side of the natural world.

Your shop is beyond lovely....and looks effortless! We know it can be difficult behind the scenes though. Describe the most difficult aspect to running a successful creative small business for you, and how you work to overcome it.
It is both terrifying and exhilarating to accept that my success is my own. I am in control of my brand, my designs and my reputation; everything comes down to choices I make and their resulting consequences. I always knew I wanted to be an artist but I never considered that I would find myself running a business. In my early dreams there was a gap between creating art and getting paid for it. I knew I wanted to be paid for my art, but the “how” was, and still is a challenge for me to understand and overcome. Running my own business means being my own boss, and I love nearly every aspect of this, but it is also the source for my greatest struggles as a business owner and artist. I have learned the best way for me to overcome these obstacles is to view them as opportunities for growth.

What efforts do you take to make your shop shine?
I spend a great deal of time working on my product photos, and with running an online shop this is a necessity. Pottery is part visual pleasure, part tactile comfort. Selling pots online automatically cancels out the tactile component of what makes a good pot a good pot. I rely on my product photos to convey texture, feeling, weight and function. I have learned the importance of taking clear photos, using natural light and close-ups to allow the consumer to visually experience all the things the hands normally decide when choosing a piece of pottery. I also spend a great deal of time making each piece from hand without molds and mixing my own glazes from minerals, oxides and stains. These extra little details are perhaps my favorite parts of making my work, and are precisely what makes my shop shine.

How do you see your business growing in the future?

I see my business gaining momentum in the future and evolving naturally to fit comfortably in my life. I am excited to be able to say that in the last year my business has become my full-time job! I feel really positive about the future and see limitless possibilities. I am not certain yet the way my business will grow, but I am certain that it will remain a part of my life. I would like to find my way into a studio space outside of my house. I am currently running some aspect of my business from nearly every room in my house. I am looking forward to having a dedicated work space where I can stretch out a little bit- without worrying about knocking over a piece of porcelain!

Tell us what’s in store for your shop; any new products, shop changes, or celebrations?
I have a love for sitting at a beautifully presented table. I have a love for good food.  And, I have an even bigger love for slowing down and spending time with those important people in my life. I am experiencing a subtle shift in my work to reflect these loves. I am working on developing a stronger dinnerware line and am really looking forward to revealing these new products which will add elegance and celebration to even the simplest meal!

November marks my two year Etsy Anniversary and I am sure I will have a fabulous sale of some sort to celebrate this milestone! I have so enjoyed the last two years and still find myself standing in awe of all I have accomplished with the support of my amazing customers, friends and family.

You’ve clearly established a successful shop, can you offer one piece of golden advice for those just starting out?

Don’t underestimate yourself. If you have an idea or dream in mind stay committed and create a path for yourself, as unconventional as it may be. My business grew at a time in my life when almost all odds were against me. I was working two jobs and going to school, and rarely had a minute to spare. I would spend my days at work thinking about the pottery I wanted to be making, and if I managed to extract twenty minutes from the entire week I would sit at my wheel and all of those pottery ideas would pour out of me in that short little session. I now fire my kiln about three times a week, but in the beginning it easily took me six months before I had enough pottery for a single firing. There were times when I became discouraged but I continued to stay focused and daydream about one day making a living from my pottery. I slowly began listing pictures of my work online and very, very slowly began selling my work. This was not an instant career shift for me. I think it is important to be realistic with ourselves, but to still keep that dreamer inside of us alive. If you have a dream just start. Even if the start feels like the teensiest tiniest little baby step, it is a start, and beginning a dream is never a regret.

Thank you Lindsay for sharing your process and dreams!

Find Lindsay here:

( know a shop that shines? does your shop stand out? submit your link to me at 

allisa{dot} jacobs {at} gmail {dot} com for consideration to be included in the new