Friday, November 29, 2013
Meet Featured Artist Rebecca Miles of Sweetgum Puppets!
Sweetgum Puppets and I’m Rebecca Miles!
What sort of items do you make?
I make fleece hand puppets and finger puppets – about 40 different animals and creatures. I also do beadwork and quilts.
When and how did you learn your craft?
I started making puppets with my young nephews about 25 years ago, sewing by hand. A friend gave me a sewing machine and things developed.
Where do you get your inspiration from?
I get inspiration from animals, imagination, and hilarious wild fabrics. I love bright, silly-looking puppets. And I get inspiration from the custom orders people give me – most recently a polka-dot elephant.
How did you get started doing this as a business?
I got started making bead jewelry and quilting, and then moved into puppets over the past ten years. The puppets have exploded. Last year, I was part of Bennett College’s EVA program (Entrepreneurial Visual Artists). It was a seminar for about 18 women artists, teaching us about the business angles of our art. It was great! Now I take part in craft shows, and sell puppets in shops and online. My ETSY shop (sweetgumpuppets.etsy.com) and Facebook page enable me to sell all over the world.
Do you have any advice for other crafters/artisans just starting out?
Talk to other crafters and explore the Internet.
Sweetgum Puppets will be a featured artist at the First Friday Indie Market on December 6, 2013. The market is located on the corner of MKL and Elm St in Downtown Greensboro, NC and is open from 4-9pm.