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the artisan project

Life at home with a baby reawakened my passion for designing and making products. I sold my creations on Etsy and started working to build a career as an artisan.

Myself, realigned »

I’m slowly getting back to making… Two years after Joaquin’s diagnosis, the urgency to save my babe has come down, and the need to breathe for myself has come up. Old passions and hobbies felt wrong for a long time (I felt tons of guilt around them), but I’m slowly coming out of that one. […]

Of Child Models and Other Demons »

If I have ever been able to get nice photos of Joaquin wearing my handmade products for kids, those days are starting to fade surely, and not very slowly. These days, now that we walk, run, roll, play, and have an agenda of our own, every time I pull out the camera and aim it […]

Cool it down, Mafe Maria »

The last time I wrote (feels like a year ago), I happily reported that I had finished my kids’ size chart and was starting to create standardized patterns for my “line” of shirts… OH MY GOD!… How I underestimated the effort and scope creep ahead of me… What hit me since then was a wave […]

Getting Serious »

For all of those who may be sore (or wondering if I’m still alive) because I have not returned their emails or have replied with one–liners, because I have not checked their Facebook updates, and I’ve kept ignoring requests to chat… I have a very good excuse: I’m working. Well… not working–working. But at least […]

Dusting the Studio (Part 2) »

Or perhaps I should call this one… “The Recycled Paperboard Nazi”, given the huge stash of empty paperboard and cardboard boxes I have amassed, and the way I protest every time Joey fails to notify me when he throws away any box I could potentially use. One of the things I most enjoy about selling […]

Dusting the Studio (Part 1) »

With only a couple of slow days after the hectic month I’ve had, my brain is starting to play its typical games… Those where it tries to make me feel guilty for not being busy, for not being immersed on accomplishing something, for not tackling the items on my To–do–when–I’m–not–busy list… Only after TWO miserable […]

Back to my roots »

A Colombian vueltiao hat for babies, my own version of a traditional product from my heritage which seems to have become my most successful and original creation.

Turns out, I can actually make bags (YESSS!) »

So, for those of you who may read this site and may not have relationships with me on Flickr or Facebook… Anybody left?… … For you, I feel the need to complete the story of my recent outburst and finish it with a happy ending. But to get here, first I… Drowned my pain with […]

Exploring New Avenues »

Here’s something I have come to know about myself over time… I need recognition. I hate to admit it to myself, but it’s the truth. On my first jobs out of college, and then, out of Business School, I got plenty of recognition from all of my bosses, and bosses’ bosses. Life was great and […]

Much ado about nothing »

Yesterday I used my day off to hand print some fabric in my kitchen. I only got four prints, which is a little disappointing considering all the time it took to prepare for the printing session, set up the work area, and then clean up everything.

What do you think, abuelita? »

As many of you may have noticed, production of playground entries on this site has slowed down considerably since Joaquin was born. While for several months the presence of a newborn was definitely a reason not to create artwork, I can’t blame it all on the poor bollito. Truth is, Joaquin’s birth brought my old […]

A virtual manicure for online selling »

A tutorial on using Photoshop to give my working hands a nice and clean manicure before posting an item for sale on Etsy.

Why am I not surprised? »

Sunday evening Joey finds me making a onesie for Joaquin. I tell him that I’m going to bed early with him. I’m a little bummed. Nobody will buy my stuff at Etsy. Just a couple of people show interest in my hats, and nobody seems to care for the mini wallet. I’m never going to […]

Sticking my patita in etsy »

YES! YES! YES! I finally opened my tiny etsy shop. As I say in my shop’s announcement, I probably should have waited to have more items to sell, but come on!… making two vueltiao hats with the little time I get away from my bollito is no small feat. As the perfectionist business–background person that […]

Make — for a living
(or at least for my own sanity!) »

Web design is cool and all, but after several years of doing it, just like with any other job, my passion for some aspects of it has diminished a bit. I’m not sure that I can pull this off, but if I could, I would love, LOVE!, to become an illustrator, and to get back […]