Natasha from Violet Tinder Studios is the pure personification of bright California style - she creates vivid stationery & art prints that will brighten up your day. Seriously - getting packages from her is like a bright ray of sunshine in my mailbox! This week I spoke with Natasha about her creative process and how she decided to take the plunge to start her own business:
Being a small business owner myself, I love to hear the origin stories of other makers. When and how did you decide to start your own business? What is your creative background?
I have always love to paint and create and even briefly studied studio art in college, but always treated it more like a hobby. After my daughter was born in early 2014, I found myself re-invigorated to create and started painting. Almost overnight, I found myself obsessed and painting during every stolen moment I could find! From there, I started making prints and stationery for friends and family, and soon after, opened my Etsy shop. It's only been about 7 months since I started selling my work, but I totally love it! It's so rewarding to have your own goals and visions and chip away at achieving them day-by-day. And it makes me so happy that others enjoy what I love to do!
You make super fun prints, stickers, and stationery. What drew you to this signature bright color palette and stationery, as opposed to any other product?
Since I was young, I was always drawn to bright, fun colors... they make me happy! So I guess it's natural for that to seep into my art... seriously, I just don't think in neutrals! As for paper goods, who doesn't like stickers and stationery? I just think there is so much fun to explore with paper!
Have you set any exciting goals for yourself or your business for 2015? What can we look forward to seeing from you!
Yes! I'm working to expand my offering into more paper products (planners, gift wrapping, scrapbooking sets) and I'd really like to branch out more in the retail world... I'm also working on a couple really exciting collaborations to come in the next few months. I want Violet Tinder to be synonymous with feel-good, colorful FUN!
What advice would you give to someone just starting out in their own self-made business?
This is a great question, because I soak up info like this myself! I am in no way an expert, but I would say have really clear goals, and stay focused on those. Once you start to achieve some of them, you can widen your scope. I think its SO EASY to spread yourself thin trying to be good at or make a mark with 347938 things (i.e. IG, your work, networking, FB, retail, blogging, trade shows) but you can't be good at everything right off the bat! Focus on the one or two that will really start to move the needle for you, and then layer on to that as you go.
Also- don't give up!!! It's easy to get discouraged and feel lost and I think we all hit bumps in the road that make you feel like throwing your hands up... but remember what got you started (the love!) and just keep going.
When you're not creating, what do you love to do?
I love love love music and (almost) everyday, I go for a long run with my headphones. It helps me relax and let my mind wander for a while and just be alone with my thoughts. I also love hanging out with my family (husband + 1yr old daughter), just exploring new parks or the beach, or finding new places to eat. Oh, and I love a good bubble bath with a glass of wine, ha! (am I a cliche or what?!)
Lastly, can you share three of your favorite artists?
Hmmm this is tough! I love such a wide range of artists!
For starters, I have always loved David Hockney! Just his sense of color and his quirky portraits... they're mesmerizing to me!
For modern/newer artists, I really admire Ashley Goldberg's work, and the business she's been able to create for herself. I love her playful, whimsical style.
And musically, I can never get enough Ray LaMontagne or Prince!