Discover This Shop: Hippie Kingdom, Playing with Paper and Clay

>> Tuesday, May 25

Discover This Shop: Hippie Kingdom
Tucked away in her balcony surrounded by birds and squirrels is Devi, dreaming up wildly colorful recycled jewelry for the world to discover! Learning from her grandmother who taught her not to throw anything away, she uses newspaper, duct tape, straws, boxes, beads and clay to create captivating and totally unique works of art from everyday items.
Devi has opened my eyes to the possibilities the junk mail in my mail box holds!
Take a look at her lovingly created items. Please don't stop here, visit her store and read her descriptions. You will be amazed are her ingenuity at creating something wonderful from objects we so often just throw away!

Tell us a little bit about yourself.

I am Devi. I was born and brought up in Kerala, the land known as "God's Own Country for its beauty.  I currently live in Chennai, a cultural city in South India. I live with my parents and elder brother. We run an online business in Indian Garments.

What first made you want to become an artist?

When I was little, I used to treasure my broken necklaces. When my creative juices flowed, I spread them on the kitchen table and recycled them into new designs. I also made all my Christmas tree decorations from candy wrappers and empty bottles, Santa face from egg shells and other cute things when it was not Christmas. My parents were super supportive about in my artistic ventures and never complained about me messing up the house. When I grew up, I was lucky enough to pursue my graduation in Accessory Design, and live a creative life.

What items do you make?

I have been making jewelry for the past 2 years. I make jewelry that looks happy, and passes on the happiness to the wearer. I am fascinated by bright colors and happy patterns and play a lot with them in my designs. I love to experiment with unconventional materials, techniques and combination.

The balcony at home is my studio. It's wonderful working here with the squirrels and birds, who keep me company throughout the day.

I make a lot of recycled and eco friendly jewelry, which I love the most.  I hate to throw away things, I stack them up. My grandma used to tell me that anything that is preserved and unused will find a use in twelve years. This has really worked for me!

What is your most favorite place in the world and why?

My favorite place is my home town in Kerala, now I get to go there only once in a year. It is a  beautiful place, calm and green. I miss raising the cows and growing our vegetables.

What would you like to be when you grow up?

I would like to be able to keep creating things and have a happy healthy family.

What started you on Etsy?

I came across Etsy when I was browsing, and fell in love with the site. I was planning on starting my own website first, but Etsy looked like a great place to start. I love the Community in Etsy, and the fact that a lot of other sellers are super supportive about newbies.

What do you like the most/least about selling online?

What I like the most about selling online is that I can meet people from across the globe. It is a wonderful feeling to know that someone across the sea is wearing the jewelry you made with your own two hands! I also like it that I can have my own time table, and work at my ease.
The least wonderful part is the tedious process of photographing and listing items. But then I suppose we have to pay a little for the bigger advantages!

What lessons have you learned since starting selling online?

Selling in a community like Etsy has taught me the need to have a Niche. Otherwise, I don't see a reason why someone should buy from my shop when there are hundreds of other shops. I am extremely good at NOT promoting my shop. Five months in Etsy has taught me that promotion is really important to get your shop to your customers. I am sure there is someone who would love to buy from my shop, but if she never sees my shop, she can't. This is something that I really need to work on!

Where do you advertise?
I haven't advertised anywhere till now. I had a Gallery in PoppytalkHandmade last month. I will be running a Google ad campaign soon.

Thank you for sharing a bit about yourself with us toady Devi! I thoroughly enjoyed browsing your shop!

Here is the link to Devi's Etsy shop Hippie Kingdom
and the link to her Facebook Page.


Devi Chand May 29, 2010 at 3:14 PM  

Thanks a ton for the feature Nina.. I have been jumping up and down :)

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This blog about my day that includes my Etsy and Artfire shops, newbie and experienced Etsy sellers, helpful business tips, tutorials, Etsy treasuries, Artfire collections, fashion, decorating, inspirational quotes, pictures and music.
For fabric flower brooches, hair pins, bobby pins, jewelry and accessories, please visit my Etsy store and Artfire store.
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