Tell us a little about the both of you!
Amanda: Well, I’m one half of the Kind Over Matter team & I live in western Pennsylvania, where I am a mama to my 2.5 year old son Zenin & we have another little light soon to make his appearance. I am a crafter, poet, lover & run Pretty Messes & verve bath press , a micro-press that publishes handmade chapbooks. I am the author of several of poetry chapbooks including love notes & bloodlines. You can connect with me through other social media outlets here but Facebook is the best place to find me.
Well, there would be enough explanations and experiences that you would get to hear from many traders about their trading journey. But for you it would be your first trial that would make you realise and understand all these because it is this trading with the crypto code that would give you the real hand on trading.
Jenn: I’m the other half of our dynamic duo, I live in northern Virginia & work for a non-profit in DC doing all things social media & multimedia related. I’m a photographer & writer, alternating between telling stories with photographs & words, I like help people find the positive in the neutral or negative. Yoga, chai lattes & sunshine make my heart go pitty-pat & I think snuggles from my kitten make the world go ‘round. The best places to find me are Facebook or Flickr .
How did you become interested in the handmade scene?
Amanda: For as long as I can remember there has always been handmade goodness surrounding me, be it by my mom or grandmothers. All of them have been involved in crocheting, cake decorating, ceramics, jewelry-making, sewing, knitting, gardening, so I guess it was the next natural step for me. When I joined Etsy in 2006 I never looked back. I love everything about the handmade scene, the community, the quality of goods, all of it.
Jenn: I found Etsy…. I think through Amanda & I just fell in love with it. I really like supporting independent artists, I like that pretty much everything on Etsy is handmade, everything is so unique.
Why did you start blogging?
Amanda: I’ve been blogging for years, via Livejournal & then blogger as a personal outlet, a way to express myself & connect with like-minded individuals. Kind Over Matter was something that Jenn & I hardly planned out. I had made some printable cards for Card Drops to put in my shop, passed them along to Jenn & she suggested we started a Flickr Pool — & then that blossomed into a blog very quickly. The response has been so totally amazing & we are so grateful for our readers, their comments & encouragement! Working with Jenn has been so, so awesome too, I can’t think of anyone else that I’d rather work with on Kind Over Matter – we just click so well, very fluid & lax, we are very lucky!!! Blogging is all about connection & finding & providing inspiration for me.
Jenn: Hahahaha. All of my friends had blogs in college & I started blogging because it looked like so much fun! One thing led to another and I started a journal on Livejournal, had one for years, & then moved to Blogger not that long ago. I really like using blogs because it lets me connect with people that I would never have met otherwise, I like sharing parts of my story to let people know that they aren’t alone in this wonderful messy life.
Where does your inspiration come from when writing articles?
Other artists, creatives & bloggers. Kind Over Matter is very image heavy & we often feature artwork that is positive & uplifting, blogs, projects, products that we come across that push us to live better or make us Feel Good.
Who taught you or how did you learn the technical (design, setup, etc) side to blogging?
Amanda: I’m a self-taught blogger. My dad does web design on the side & I’ve had a few friends that have tinkered in it, so I’ve had some influence from them but mostly I’ve taught myself how to maneuver html, etc. Same goes for graphic design, many hours spent learning Photoshop, which I adore! I am by no means an expert though & I am learning new things all the time.
Jenn: I’ve taken some classes here & there — HTML, Photoshop, things like that, but mostly, I taught myself how to do things. There were (so!) many happy accidents along the way with layouts & such, I poured over HTML tutorials & when all else failed, I peppered my friends with questions, & because they love me, they helped me tidy stuff up. Oh, how they love me.
How did you build a community around your blog?
It’s challenging to build a community, it’s hard when you’re just starting out. We spent a lot of time basically putting ourselves, this blog, this concept, out there – through Twitter, Facebook, Etsy, connecting with other bloggers, doing collab projects. When people e-mailed us, we e-mailed them back, if they left comments, we’d respond, we put our faces & names so readers would see that we’re real. We made things personal & intimate, I think, & that’s really the only way I know how to make a community. You have to be open & be willing to be open.
Any specific tips you have for newbie handmade bloggers who want to use their blog to grow their handmade business?
I think updating daily, maybe even numerous times a day is something that helps a lot. Find blogs/bloggers that are focusing on the same thing you are & connect with them, you can do that by joining an Etsy Team too. Read & comment on other blogs. Offer tutorials, freebies, giveaways, make it FUN! Just be you, you can’t go wrong when you do that. Oh, Oh! Patience is key, don’t give up & don’t be afraid to change or go in a different direction when something isn’t working for you.
Name three websites you couldn’t live without.
Facebook, Flickr & Etsy
What are your three favorite Etsy shops and why?
Amanda: What a TOUGH question, I have so many!!! Jessica Swift’s Shop – her artwork is such a huge inspiration to me. | Toadstool Soaps Cheryl has been my soap dealer for years, you must try her Pink Candy & Sugar Cookie soaps, YUM! | Hydra Heart – I’ve been dying for a pair of her Keyhole Flats for ages, someday!
Jenn: Ooooh, so hard to choose. Definitely vol25 – I love Jess’ art, it’s so pretty. Lunasa Designs – Rebekah’s jewelry is simply amazing! & Jennifer Morris Photo – her photographs are so whimsical & light, they all make me swoon!
Where do you see your blog in ten years?
Ummm, well, we know it will still be on the internet?! Hahaha!! No, really, hopefully blogs will still be around & inspiring people. A decade is a really long time in blog years though, so we’ll see what becomes of Kind Over Matter, hopefully it will grow over the years, it could morph into some completely different, who knows! We really haven’t thought that far ahead but we like to Dream Big – so watch out!