Shop Spotlight Simply Creative Suzanne Carillo
Today I am shining the light on the talented Suzanne Carillo. She is a self taught artist, designer and illustrator who finds her creative spark often inspired by her muse, a pug named Zoe. You will see Zoe featured in most of her pug designs. When Zoe isn’t inspiring Suzanne her aunts or uncles are there and so are 4 pugs in her immediate family that spark some inspiration too. She designs her necklaces because she personally wants to wear them. Often her cards are inspired out of desire and necessity as well. But, anything can light the spark to ignite Suzanne’s creativity. Suzanne says, “I have a million more ideas in my head than I ever manage to get to. I’m a selfish artist. I design what I like and not necessarily what other people want. I am always blown away when someone likes one of my designs enough to buy it and give it as a gift, wear it or use it to create something memorable for themselves. One of the biggest joys in my life is to see someone wearing one of my necklaces and see them feel good about themselves. My heart grows three times every time that happens.”
Lets get to know Suzanne a bit more
I’m a pug lover, creative gal with a love of fashion. I had my own company called Bisous where I designed and manufactured wholesale scrapbooking supplies called PDQ (Pretty Darn Quick). Since the crash of the scrapbooking market I gave up my business. However I still sell some of my products online in my Etsy store and still maintain the Bisous.biz website. I also license some of my illustrations for the craft industry. I have been drawing, painting, crafting and creating for as long as I can remember. If it’s creative I’m all over it. I stumbled into making jewelry when I saw a fabric necklace in a magazine that I loved. But when I went to buy it no one had anything like it. My solution was of course to make my own.
Suzanne, what made you decide to open Simply Creative, your online shop?
The Etsy store offered me the opportunity to sell my jewelry online. Once I closed my Ecommerce store for my scrapbooking I brought over some of my designs into the Etsy store as well. I have been creating ever since I was a kid (maybe 3 or 4?) I used to watch a show called Mr. Dress-Up and he had a segment that was about crafting where we would draw, paint or whatever. I would get my TV table ready with all my supplies and watched that religiously. Eeek. I sound old.
Suzanne, please tell us about your shop name.
I tried to learn from the mistakes I’d made with my previous business. Stay away from a name that no one but French people can pronounce…and explain something about yourself or the products. Simply Creative uses my two initials, Suzanne Carillo and doesn’t limit my creative possibilities.
Being a shop owner has its challenges, what do you find are the most challenging aspects of being a shop owner?
It is the same as being a business owner. Trying to get your product in front of your buyers and being profitable. Establishing a presence in an over saturated and crowded marketplace such as Etsy is beyond challenging. I’m still learning to be honest. I get frustrated with my shop and probably don’t put enough time or money into marketing strategies. It takes so long to make an impact. One thing I have learned…pug owners love pug products. More than anything else I’ve created. Also…I live in Canada and shipping costs here are horrendous. (As in $23 for one 12″ x 12″ for less than a half a pound scrapbook size package) That is why I actually prefer to offer digital downloads. People get the product instantly and there is no additional cost.
Scrapbookers will love these digital designs Suzanne!
Here’s Zoe and two of her inspirations!
Suzanne it has been a pleasure shining the spotlight on your shop Simply Creative today. What do you enjoy doing when you are not creating for your shop?
Fashion and blogging. In all honesty I am spending way more of my time blogging than I am creating for my shop lately. It has taken over much of my time. It has become another creative outlet that I am exploring and enjoying. I try to write humorous posts that people will find entertaining.
Suzanne I am happy to learn you have found another outlet that sparks your creativity.
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