where you can find some real fun and cute creatures.
The first thing you see when you visit her store is her cute store banner
who wouldn’t want to cuddle with those fun monsters.
Now come on with me and let’s find out what Anne creates in her fantastic shop and chat a little with her.
Where is your center of craft life? Where is your business?
My shop is based in Portland, Oregon, and my creature studio is part of my home.
My shop announcement, which sums up my creations, is: Weird geeky monsters. Silly playful stuffed animals. Funny plush creatures. Bizarre one-of-a-kind aliens. Each is handmade, unique, and filled with goofy humor and good energy. Perfect gifts for quirky, whimsical people.
How did your store
come to life?
I’ve been sketching goofy monsters, geeky aliens, and whimsical creatures ever since the second grade. About ten years ago, when many of my friends started having babies, I decided I wanted to make something personal for their babies’ nurseries, so I decided to turn my sketches into stuffed creations. (Many of my friends still have those first experimental creations, and my style and the quality of the finished product has definitely evolved over time!)
I also realized that—after giving these gifts—many of my friends took their baby’s creature for their own enjoyment—propping it next to their computer at home or taking it to their office. (They said that the baby was too young to fully appreciate the creature!) I realized that many adults still enjoy having a goofy stuffed companion to keep them company throughout the day. So, now, my creatures are designed with adults, teens, and older children in mind.
Initially, I sold my creations through word-of-mouth, but in 2008 I opened my first online shop. I moved my shop to Zibbet a couple of months ago, and am very happy to be there.
What is the story behind your Shop name, how did it get it and why?
I named my shop CreaturesNorthwest to include the Pacific Northwest in the name. I was born in the Midwest, but have lived in Oregon for 13 years now, and I consider it home.
What kind of material do you work with and why?
Most of my creatures consist of 60-90% recycled materials, including recycled sweaters, gloves, buttons, hardware, costume jewelry, and other interesting ‘findings.’ I enjoy working with upcycled materials as it not only gives my creatures more character and history, but it also keeps these items from being thrown away.
What/ who got you into creating?
My mom sewed when I was a kid. I don’t remember her ever actively teaching me anything when I was young, but I do remember watching her. I was surprised when I bought my first sewing machine as an adult how much I remembered (tips and techniques) simply from having watched her all those early years. That said, I’m constantly creating and experimenting with new ideas, materials, and methods. This means each creature is quite unique.
Where do you find your inspiration?
Whenever I’m doing something that I enjoy in a relaxing place, I’m inspired with new ideas. More specifically, I find inspiration in taking road trips, perusing book stores, beach walking on the Oregon coast, camping, hiking, and visiting art museums. I also study people’s faces and translate them into creatures sometimes (although I don’t tell people I’m doing this). *smile*