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Interview with Carolina from Beyond Wonderland

Carolina of Beyond Wonderland will be selling her new line of plush toys and her bags at the You Bazaar! in San Francisco on November 2nd and I have had a chance to do an email interview with her.

Carolina is a full time mom who loves to knit, paint, and sew. She is the owner of Beyond Wonderland and specializes in unique handmade bags and fabric accessories.

I love your bags and wristlets, the fabrics are so adorable! How do you go about choosing them?

When I go fabric shopping I choose fabrics that stands out to me, that I know I will enjoy sewing with. Half of the fun of sewing for me is working with these amazing fabrics. It would be a little boring working with a fabric that I didn’t love.

How did you get your start in sewing and crafting? Were you a crafty kid?

I think I inherited my crafting gene from my grandmothers. My father’s mother loves to crochet and make dolls and figurines and on my mother’s side my grandmother and great grandmother were both dressmakers and my grandmother still loves to knit. My mom always had us working on crafting projects when we were little and I remember looking foward to art class in school. For as long as I remember I always felt most inspired and excited when working on an art project so I guess I was a crafty kid . I have dabbled in all types of crafting from collage,knitting,beading, painting…etc. I only started sewing about two years ago but I caught on very quickly and I love the whole process, from pattern making to picking out fabric to the actual sewing.

Please tell us a little bit about how your business went from an idea to what is is today.

My husband bought me my first sewing machine for Christmas about three years ago and I was very intimidated by it at first so much so that I didn’t try to use it until April of the next year. I started out trying a few tutorials from and caught on to the basics pretty easily. After a couple weeks I had made quite a few bags and didn’t know what to do with them all so I thought about selling them. I had heard of Etsy by then and signed up and within the first week I made my first sale. My business has evolved since then, it is really different now from when I first started.

You’re a stay at home mom but obviously you are also working hard at your crafty business. How do you juggle that?!

Well I have two boys ages 1 and 3 and they obviously come first so any extra time I have aside from family I devote to my business that means I work during naps and bedtime or when they are busy playing. I also don’t require much sleep so that helps :)
When I have a craft fair or show my husband stays home and hangs out with the boys. He understands that this business is important to me so he has been very supportive and that helps tremendously.

What are some other things you like to do when you are not busy making awesome stuff?

I love playing video games, baking, reading, and just hanging out with my family and friends
I am also trying to improve on making my own clothing. I’ve made a few items but I would like to make a lot more

Will you be showcasing some plush creations at the You Bazaar?

I am, I’ve always loved plush dolls so I am designing my own especially for the You Bazaar show.

I’m always interested in other peoples work habits and work spaces. Do you set specific work hours for yourself or work when you’re feeling creative? Are you super organized or messy? What does your workspace look like?

I work whenever I have free time and I try to set a goal of what I am going to finish within that time.
I try to be as organized as possible mostly because I can’t work when things are in disarray and also since my “office” is in the dining room of our condo I have to be organized or else we start drowning in fabric and thread :)

Who are some of your favorite indie artist/crafters and why do you love them?
The Black Apple – I wish I could buy all of her prints, they are so beautiful
Treehouse 28 – I bought a top from here and it is perfect. Soft and comfy and the fit is great
Ahpeele – Beautiful handscreened tops, I bought my favorite t shirt from this shop
Ashley G – I absolutely love this artist, all her prints are just great
DoubleParlour – Very cool prints and great sculptures
GypsyandTwink – beautiful collaged wood figures

I could name so many more, I try to buy mostly handmade so I am always on the look out for cute shops

My website is :
Brick and mortar shops you can find my items at:
Angelfish & co
Needles and Pens – Look for new items in October
Whizbang Fabrics – Great fabric shop that will start carrying lines from local artists in October

The interviewer, Minnie, also blogs about crafts and other things at Thank You For Not Being Perky.

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