Friday, May 30, 2008

~Featured Crafter~ Olde Country Creations

Tonya of Olde Country Creations

Please tell us a little bit about yourself.
My name is Tonya Hopkins, the artist and owner of Olde Country Creations ( I am married to my best friend from high school, I have 2 daughters (14 and 8) and live near the coast of North Carolina. I love to spend time at my parent's farm with my family, watching my oldest daughter play soccer, listening to music, swimming, cooking and watching football.

How long have you had your online business?
Olde Country Creations has been open for just a few months. However, I used to own an online shop called The Artist Barn. I owned the Artist Barn for 3 years.

How did you come up with your business' name?
I was lying in bed one night and it just kind of came to me. I love things that are old, the country and creating so Olde Country Creations seemed fitting.

What made you decide to open a website to sell your creations?
Originally I opened my shop because I had family and friends wanting to buy my creations. I thought if they liked my work enough to buy it then maybe others would as well.

What is your 'specialized' craft?
Decorative painting.

How long have you been crafting?
I started crafting in 1994.

What or who has been your inspiration?
Besides my family I have 2 major groups that keep my creative juices flowing. One is the community at Prim Mart and the other is Tole Town. Both are filled with creative ladies that inspire me every day.

Are all of your products handmade?
Yes, either handmade or hand painted.

What types of products do you sell?
I sell hand painted items on a variety of surfaces, hair bows, soap balls and I am starting to make dolls, which has been so much fun.

What seems to be your best sellers?
Because the majority of my items are one of a kind I do not have a best seller per say. The designs I sell the most of are roosters and roses.

Do you sell wholesale?
Not at this time. Again because so many of my products are one of a kind, it is hard to offer wholesale.

What methods of advertising do you use to promote your shoppe?
Link exchanges, charity donations, networking, offering free articles for redistribution with my information attached, exchanging fillers for mom packs (or some call them prim packs), top sites and of course handing out business cards as much as possible.

Do you have a blog that you use to help promote your shoppe?
Yes. Olde Country Creations Blog

Do you sell in other venues?
I have a local customer base but I do not consign my products. I have never done a craft show but I am hoping to do the Blueberry Festival that is held in Burgaw, NC next year.

How many hours per week would you say you spend on your website and crafting?
I treat my business as a full time job so I try to put in 35 to 40 hours a week on business related things and creating.

Here is a slide show of just a few of the products that Olde Country Creations has to offer.

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