As a textile artist I need inspiration to create new exclusive items. Traveling to different places is the best inspiration for me. I love to take a trip to a new place and stay there for some time to soak in the atmosphere, absorb the nature and learn about the culture. Luckily, the U.S. is blessed with such varied territories that you don't even need to travel abroad to experience the unique cultural twist you can't but feel when you arrive in a different state.
My last trip was to Arizona where I stayed for half a year. I was so inspired by the majestic mountains, jaw-dropping views and sweeping vistas that I even stayed there longer than I initially planned. I have a store at Etsy where I sell handmade stuff and from time to time I need to immerse into new environment to get inspired and learn about the culture and art of the region. Arizona is a great place to feel the artistic vibe. The culture of Native Americans, unique traditions and emphasis on diversity are the key values of Arizona and they got right into my heart.
I had many discoveries in Arizona and the city of Scottsdale where I rented a house. I liked to explore the numerous gift shops where you can find a variety of handmade products. Here I spotted a nice selection of handmade bracelets in a variety of colors. Hucklebeary Bracelets were hanging on a wooden rack and the bear was holding it making evident the meaning of the brand itself. Probably the name of the brand is an alliteration of the popular name of Huckleberry used by the famous Mark Twain in one of his books. Anyway, the bear was a key figure in the store and served as a one-of-a-kind centerpiece, surrounded by other goodies. Here you can also purchase various jewelry items like chains with pendants, necklaces and more.
Handmade tableware with cactus design as a symbol of the state are also hard not to notice. Textile towels, leather bags with flowery appliqués and Indian inspired paintings add unique local flair to the gift shopping experience. Gift shops always snapshot the essence and most distinctive features of the particular culture and here we can see all Arizona is famous for.
Leather bags with handmade decorations deserve to be mentioned too. Some bags are made of textile, but the print is identical to those worn by Native Americans.
Large, medium-sized and small, in all shapes and vibrantly decorated, made of textile or leather, bags always make a great gift especially if you are away from home.
What I noticed in Arizona gift stores is that they like to sell personalized products, such as personalized t-shirts and reusable gift bags. This gave me the idea to add personalization service to my Etsy store. I know how hard it is to find handmade stuff in California, let alone personalized handmade stuff. So, the idea is to make personalized handmade bags, jewelry and other accessories and offer it for sale online. To promote my store and attract new customers I'm going to offer Etsy Coupons at 20off.com. I hope my marketing strategy will work and I will find lots of new clients.
Due to my visit to Arizona I got inspired by the culture of Native Americans and stepped back in time when I saw traces of Indian customs and traditions still alive and flourishing in Arizona.