Name: You can call me Jen, but my screen name is usually neverfeltbetter pretty much everywhere.
Location: Sacramento, CA
How we met: You and I met at an I Heart Rummage holiday sale. We were booth neighbors and I kept fondling your aprons and embroidered goods, so i think you kinda had to talk to me! LOL. You were very sweet and just getting started with craft shows. Unfortunately, my family had to relocate from PDX to where we live now in Sacramento, but we have remained online friends and I love to see your work featured around the ‘net!
What you do: I wrangle toddlers for a living, doing in-home day care which i have done for many years. It allowed me to stay at home with my girls and concentrate on neverfeltbetterbyjen.com. I have a daughter with autism and it was particularly rough during her toddler years time-wise, but things have really fallen into place, which allows me to have a studio in my house and time to create. Additionally, i am very lucky to have my husband Shawn as my biggest supporter and helper monkey :)
NFB has been in bloom since 2005. I started on Etsy with little felt brooches, and vintage component jewelry pieces and did really well, I thought. Got my own website in 2006, then I added crocheted items like scarves, pouches and also sewn pieces like my bird headbands. Finally came my favorite work of soldered pendants preserving vintage fabric. I love soldering and would love to teach myself some metalsmithing techniques to incorporate in my work for larger art pieces. I don’t mean this to be an afterthought: I’m a proud vegan! All of my work is cruelty free and you will find no animal products such as wool, silk, bone, shell, etc… even the glue is animal by-product free!
2009 was a hard year for me personally. I lost my mother and it really took me out of the *present* for pretty much the entire year. On top of that, I went from Portland’s craft scene to… well, Sacramento’s, and it was a rough transition to say the least. By springtime I found a cool venue to sell at, and that worked out well but in general I phoned it all in. For 2010, I am pairing down NFB to focus on what makes me happy (and what has proven to make customers most happy)—no more phoning anything in! That is what is so great about having your own business—it allows for down times when they are necessary, and everyone has been extremely supportive of me over the past year. Thanks guys!
What inspires you most when you create: I am an accessory artist, and I am a tactile fiend. I love pawing fabrics and looking at them really close up so you can see the fibers. It doesn’t bother me to see strings, or unfinished edges. i love the squeaky hard sound of acrylics and the soft quietness of cottons. I get inspired by stacks of vintage remnants that friends pass along to me, that beg to be made into pendants pressed between glass, then soldered. I love watching the silver metal go from liquid to solid, then polishing it up. Nature inspires me as well.
5 things you’re digging at the moment:
• Pinking Shears
• Throwback Pepsi
• Black Liquid Eye Liner