Many of us entertain the idea of founding our own little enterprise centered around something we really love to do, but I think it takes real courage to start following your dreams and probably even fiercer determination to keep following them when every now and then the road turns bumpy. Carving out your path as a recognized artisan is not for the faint of heart, but the rewards of tenacity are manifold. Lisa Nowakowski, owner of The Happy Acorn, the purveyor of fantastic and unique handmade cake toppers (and handmade jewelry, gifts and collectibles) lets us take a peek behind the curtain, and find out what it is like to run a creative family business. She also shares a few craft secrets along the way.
Heart and Soul, interview with Lisa part 1
It’s a true honor to be a part of someone’s life in that way. To make something that signifies love, and to hope that they will look at that cake topper years from now and show their children and remember their special day.
What do you think about the deluge (in a good way :) ) of craft based businesses that are being founded?
I think it’s fantastic that creative people have an outlet in the internet to share their work. It’s both inspiring and encouraging as an artist to be a part of and to have this amazing community right at your fingertips.
Are people tired of uniformized global brands, mass marketing and production?
I think that people have always been drawn to the work of artisans, and I think as more people realize that there is this wealth of handmade goods available online, more folks will want to spend their money on the unique work of a real, touchable artisan rather than a big retail store that relies upon trends and sells cookie cutter stuff that came off an assembly line. It’s a much more personal experience to work with someone one-on-one who is actually making your item by hand, who not only knows what they’re doing but who truly cares about what they’re doing. It’s got heart and soul. And it’s so much more rewarding as a customer, I think, to know that you’re supporting this person’s life by buying from them. It’s such a personal, lovely experience. A win-win.
Does the DIY movement and popularity of Etsy like market places constitute a mini revolution of a sort?
I think so. I mean, it’s worldwide but again, right at your fingertips. What could be more convenient and more fun? It’s entertaining to shop online, and it’s much more fun to shop on Etsy than it is at a big box dot com. And you’re going to be more apt to find something unique to you. And it’s inspiring folks to tap into their own creativity, talents, and skills, and to be more independent thinkers and break free from commercialism and the mainstream. That’s very revolutionary, I think.
How does all this look in the cake decorating business?
It looks good! My husband and I really love what we do, and I think that business will increase as more people begin to get comfortable with shopping online and also as they begin to see how many more options they have as consumers now. We’re open to making whatever the customer wants, and we want them to be happy with their piece and proud to show it to their family and friends. It’s a true honor to be a part of someone’s life in that way. To make something that signifies love, and to hope that they will look at that cake topper years from now and show their children and remember their special day. It’s really very nice.
The second part of the interview is coming soon.
Available here: The Happy Acorn
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