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Hey friends!  Today I am excited to introduce to you a shop with the best name ever (good + my husband’s name), haha!  No, but really, are you familiar with this shop?  It’s full of bags of all sorts, diaper bags, yoga mat bags, clutches for your bridesmaids, wristlets for every day use, sunglass case bags, as well as colorful accessories such as scarves, cowls, and more!  Melissa, the wonderful mastermind behind it all, uses a variety of materials and fabrics to hand make each and every one of them.  And the quality just looks to be impeccable.  Read on to learn more about Melissa and enter a fab giveaway!


1. Tell us a little bit about yourself and how you decided to open up shop.
Hmmm, let’s see. I am full-time Mommy to a gorgeous 15th month-old girl (no bias here), a part-time Pilates instructor, an adjunct art professor (I teach sculpture and design), free-lance photographer, and a fine artist as well as an intense crafter. Know that expression – jack of all trades? Some say it would apply here, but I like to think I’ll be an expert of everything by the time I’m 64.

I decided to open up shop during the bleak winter of 2009 when I had a freshly minted MFA in Painting in hand and no full-time employment. I had a growing stash of knit scarves, a steady supply of free fabric scraps from the sweatshop next door to the studio I rented in Philadelphia, and plenty of time to experiment. I had recently met Margaux Kent, of Peg and Awl and The Black Spot Books, and was encouraged by her to open up an online shop.

2. What are your favorite color combinations of the season?
If I am completely truthful, I will have to plead ignorance here. I am woefully out of touch with fashion trends and usually google them when I start seeing them pop up on etsy. I did google the spring 2012 Pantone color report and I am really digging the sodalite blue contrasted against cockatoo. When I choose fabrics for the items in my shop, I always grab the patterns and colors that pop out at me from the shelves. It is a completely intuitive process.

3. What is your favorite ice cream flavor?
This one is tough. I would say it is a three-way tie between pumpkin, chocolate peanut butter, and lemon ginger snap from Trader Joe’s. I like to eat seasonally – so the pumpkin is great for fall, the lemon ginger snap in summer/spring because it’s so fresh and tart, and chocolate peanut butter is good anytime!

4. What advice would you have wished that someone told you before you first opened your shop?
I think I got plenty of great advice in the beginning that went unheeded. I really need to learn things in my own meandering way and since this shop was a complete labor of love, I was not good about listening to advice. That being said, I think one of my biggest mistakes was not pricing my items high enough. In fact, my first customer on etsy told me my stuff was too cheap! It wasn’t until I had my daughter that I really began to appreciate how much time it took for me to make my items and to start to raise the prices to reflect my effort. Once I no longer had much time to spare, the time I did have seemed much more precious!


a Rafflecopter giveaway
This giveaway is open INTERNATIONALLY and closes on March 20, 2012 at 12:01AM. Good luck!

Don’t want to wait? Enter code “ALAMODE10” for 10% off your entire purchase through the end of March 2012! 😀