I hope you’re all enjoying this series where we get to find out about amazing designer/makers who create beautiful things like these earrings by Sweetiepips. I first saw these on Instagram and immediately knew I had to find out more about the person who designed and made them!
Hi there, can you tell the Simple Stylish Makes readers a little bit about yourself?
My name is Katrien, designer and maker behind Sweetiepips. I create big and bold jewellery from my home in Sussex, where I also care for my 4-year-old son Robin (affectionately known as Bobbins.)
When did you start designing/making?
I started Sweetiepips after the birth of my son when it soon became apparent that he was very different from other children; around his 2nd birthday he was diagnosed with Autism and Sensory Processing Disorder. His additional care needs and challenging behaviour meant I couldn’t foreseeably hold down a regular 9 to 5 job and having majored in Art at University (about a hundred years ago) a creative venture I could do at home seemed like the natural thing to do.
I love him to pieces but life with a non-verbal Autie can be difficult and traumatic sometimes, and tiring all the time, so this creative outlet stops me from whimpering into my coffee at 3am in the morning while he’s watching Baby Jake on repeat! Sweetiepips has literally saved my sanity on many an occasion.
Can you share any top designing/making tips?
I don’t know if you would call these top tips, however, anyone trying to follow a creative path or run a creative business, I would urge them to follow what I call the 3 D’s:
*Dare to Dream. It’s a cliché but if you don’t have a dream, how are you going to have a dream come true!
*Do what you love. Again, easier said than done but life is far too short to not do what you love.
*Don’t give up! I often see people give up their creative ventures all too easily and quickly, especially those selling on Etsy. Good things take time. It took me 3 years before I was comfortable and confident with my creative business and the direction it was going. And now nearly 5 years on my hard work and crazy ideas are paying off. In fact, the past 12 months has seen me collaborate with a luxury brand, showcase at LFW and feature in a Badass Bridal campaign with some of my fav designers! Really, if I can do it, so can you!
When you’re not designing/making, what do you like to do?
Any time away from the studio/kitchen usually involves exploring the great outdoors with my son. We walk everywhere. Well I walk and he sits in his wheelchair and enjoys the ride whilst eating copious amounts of Jammy Dodgers!
Wow, Katrien, you are doing amazing things and you are a shining example of how designing/making and running your own creative business has so many other benefits that people won’t be aware of. Keep up the beautiful designs and those three D’s are spot on, thank you so much!