Art on the Rivers is coming to Frontier Park in historic Saint Charles on August 27. While we’re really excited to be hosting this event in conjunction with the Greenway Network and Race for the Rivers, it’s out makers, artists, and crafters that make the whole thing possible for us. Shows like this give us the opportunity to talk to the public about our individual makers stories, and also to show that there are artists living and working in the community and making a living from making things by hand. We’re thrilled to be working with each of these exciting artists, and look forward to introducing them all to you!
Today, we caught up with Ruthie of Josephine’s to chat about her work, being a maker, inspiration, and goals. Join us as we meet our makers!
Tell us about your first “Maker Moment”
Well I have always loved art and making things since I was a young child and as I got older I have always tried to be resourceful and make gifts for people and then people started to ask me to make them things and then started suggestion selling items I make .So I made the decision start doing craft shows then moved on to art shows and have enjoyed meeting a whole lot of wonderful people along this wild crazy journey !!
Where does your making happen?
OOH my , my workspace it has over taken my house…lol….I do a lot of my work at my kitchen table after I get home from my full time job. Occasionally when I break out the power tools I head outside under the covered porch . But I have been known to do my work in many different places like in restaurants to hospitals. When you have deadlines to meet you do what you can and where you can.
What inspires you?
I started out as a seamstress but most of my dabbling is in jewelry and I love to find things that is not made to be jewelry components and turning them in to a one-of-a kind piece of jewelry . I also love to take broken pieces and make them whole again. I have had many requests to make new jewelry pieces out of broken family heirloom pieces. Just love seeing peoples faces light up when I can take their vision and make it happen .
Because there is nothing better than handmade. With my jewelry there is only a few pieces that I can duplicate because I love to use vintage items that are very limited and can not be reproduced making them one of a kind.
Are there any materials that you have used in your products that you think may be unexpected?
Vintage scraps (belts, wire , buttons), recyclables(old tile pieces,) hardware(washers). For example I like to take vintage lapel pins and make hand crocheted necklace out of them . I make things from bullets. Scrapbook items turned into jewelry ect.
What personality trait do you possess that you think helps you the most as a professional crafter?
Thinking outside the box is a must for me.
What do you think differentiates crafting from other types of business?
People put their heart and soul into each and every piece that they make which I believe makes it even more special.
What do you enjoy most about selling your handmade goods?
Getting the personal satisfaction of seeing people loving my pieces that I create and meeting new people and making new friendships along the way.
Where do you hope to be in 5 years? 10?
I hope to be in a river town somewhere living in a old Victorian home that has an attached shop where I can sell my wears ……it would be a dream come true.