Friday, July 26, 2019

Featured Exhibitor: Willow Tree Jewelry

Who are you and what do you do? 

We are a mother-in-law/daughter-in-law jewelry artist team based in Minneapolis. We are proud to design and create pieces that combine a mix of semi-precious stones, gold filled and sterling silver metals, and authentic leathers.

What’s the latest thing you’ve been working on?

We are currently working on adding new earrings and rings to our collection with the use of metal fabrication, forging, and metalsmithing. We are also working to include new gemstones in our collection too!

Will you be featuring any special holiday items?

We are working on a handful of gift sets that will be available this coming holiday season.
What was your first memory of making something?

Years ago, when Brenda was traveling with her son for athletics, she often found herself with quite a bit of downtime. While on a sports trip to Saint Louis, MO, she wound up in a bead store, expecting to only be there for a few minutes. Two hours later, she found herself with a basket full of beads, findings, wire, tools, and instruction books. It was then she knew that she was hooked on jewelry making.

What do your customers love most about your product(s)?

Customers love our quality, attention to detail, delicate and bold designs, and most of all, our custom bracelet size guide - no two wrists are alike, and everyone deserves a bracelet that fits well.

Have you always been passionate about art and design?

Brenda's love for art and design started at an early age when she learned how to make clothing. Years ago, fashion was not as accessible as it is today. Many times, the latest fashion could only be found at an expensive department store or in a secondhand shop (still at a premium price). Knowing that she was good with a needle and thread, Brenda began making clothing. From selecting patterns to coordinating colors - her clothes became some of her most significant accomplishments.
Like Brenda, Christina has always loved art and design. From writing to photography to jewelry design, she has always been fascinated with the idea of creating something new. Joining Brenda in business has allowed her to explore unique aspects of her creativity that she never knew existed, and for that, she is grateful.
What do you love most about craft show vending?

We love interacting with our customers. It means a lot to us to have the support of our returning customers over the years - it is always a highlight to see a familiar face!


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Posted by Admin at 9:27 AM  ⁙  0 COMMENTS

CATEGORY:  Featured Exhibitors

Thursday, July 11, 2019

Featured Exhibitor: Moxie Malas

Moxie Malas is crystal healing and aromatherapy jewelry inspired by the best version of you and created as a reminder that all those qualities already exist within.  Each piece of Moxie Malas is created using genuine semi-precious gemstones and crystals.  The intentions for the jewelry is set with the needs of the wearer in mind and what stones and crystals best support that intention.  



Who are you and what do you do? 

Jessica Hoch, Owner of Moxie Malas and we create crystal and gemstone jewelry as a wearable affirmation of the energy within.


What’s the latest thing you’ve been working on?     

We just launched our NEW Moxie Monthly Bracelet Club where you get an exclusive to the club bracelet each month along with a crystal and worksheet on how to incorporate the intention of the bracelet into your life.



Will you be featuring any special holiday items? 

I will be offering an essential oil and bracelet gift set!




How do you usually prepare for the holiday season? 

Preparation for the holidays usually starts in about June with planning and then the ordering of the stones and crystals will be done in September with making happening in October. 


What was your first memory of making something? 

I grew up in an family of artists so I have been creating and making for as long as I can remember. When it comes to beaded jewelry my cousins and I would create bracelets and necklaces at the cabin every summer. 


What do your customers love most about your products? 

My customers love the deeper meaning behind each piece we create. Each bracelet and each mala (meditation beads) we create has a specific name and story to explain the energies of the stones and crystals that are combined. When our customers are shopping Moxie Malas they are really looking deeper into what it means to them and what it represents as they wear it each day. 




Have you always been passionate about art and design? 

Absolutely! Growing up in the back room of a flower shop I have been surrounded by color, design and natural beauty since before I can even remember. 


What do you love most about craft show vending? 

The thing I love most about craft show vending is getting to really interact with our customers and hear their stories. 


Is this a full-time business for you? 

Yes, Moxie Malas is my full time business. 




What’s your favorite item that you sell? 

My favorite item that we sell is the Peace Within Mala - I have been wearing it almost daily for about a year and a half now. 


How did you get started in your business? 

I started Moxie Malas really as a way to give meaningful gifts to my friends and family and it slowly blossomed into a business. 


Why did you start working in this particular craft? 

Working with malas and with stones and crystals was very intentional for me. I really wanted to create something with beautiful energy, deep meaning and jewelry that would be a vehicle for a greater message. 




What do you think sets your designs apart from others? 

The unique combinations of stones and crystals as well as the stories behind each piece. 


What has been your favorite moment since creating your business? 

There have been so many amazing moments in the last 4 years, but the one that stands out the most for me is when a women emailed me saying that she had been meditating everyday since purchasing the mala (meditation beads) and that it had changed her life. That moment really solidified my “why”.


How does the city you live in influence your work? 

Being is MN there is so much support and enthusiasm for local makers. It has been integral in the growth of my business.




What are some inspirations for your work? 

My biggest inspiration for my work is people. The whole reason I do what I do is to help people to heal, transform, and step into their own personal power. Much of the aesthetic inspiration comes from the natural beauty of the stones and crystals themselves. 


What motivates you to create? 

A deep desire to be surrounded by beauty and to work with my hands.  


Where do you see your business in 3 years?  

I see my Moxie Monthly Bracelet Club growing into a thriving online community as well as hosting workshops and retreats all over the county. In 3 year I also see my retailer list growing and thriving. 




Where did your business name come from? Is there an interesting story behind it? 

Moxie to me is really about having a clever perseverance, positive mind and a vision for the future. Moxie is about knowing yourself and believing in your inner hopes and dreams. 


Have you had any major failures? If so, what were some important insights gained? 

I don’t know that I would necessarily call it a failure, but I started my business with a different name and logo. I rebranded to Moxie Malas in 2017. The biggest insight here was the shift from making the jewelry to heal myself to making the jewelry for others and what it really meant to my customer rather than just myself. 




What valuable experience/knowledge did you have before starting your business? 

I have been a yoga and meditation teacher for 10 years and have my 500ryt from Devanadi Yoga, as well as Reiki 2 certification. Much of the energy and personal growth exercises and knowledge come from these teachings. I also have a Bachelors’ Degree in Apparel Design and Development which has really helped with the production side of things.



What made you take this leap into being your own boss? 

I grew up in a family business and watched my mom be her own boss my whole life and it really seemed like the next natural step. I really decided to go full time with it when the finances could support me doing so and when the workload became too great to have any other projects. 


What are some tips or suggestions you’d like to offer to fellow makers? 

Keep following your passions and remember that no one can create what you are creating. Even if it’s the same exact object or thing, they are not you and don’t have your energy or life experience to offer. Trust the process, honor your energy, and take things at a pace that serve you and your life aspirations. 







Check out more Moxie Malas products online, and be sure to stop by their booth at the Minneapolis Gift & Art Expo, November 1-3, 2019 at the Minneapolis Convention Center!










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Posted by Admin at 3:25 PM  ⁙  0 COMMENTS

CATEGORY:  Featured Exhibitors