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Wednesday, February 16, 2011

Artist of the Week!


Introduction- Tell us a bit about yourself.
I'm Michelle, the 39 year old mom of 3 (1 married daughter and 2 teen and tween sons) and the “Maw Maw Shelle” to 4 beautiful angels. I'm a true G.R.I.T.S. (Girl raised in the south), and New Orleans native who relocated to the beautiful serene “country” in St. Charles Parish after Katrina.
How did you get started making handmade items?
As long as I can remember I've always felt the need to create things. Only way back then I didn't know there was a name for the affliction. Had I known then what I know now, life would have been so much easier. My fondest memories of creating as a child was making things with my dad who's philosophy was “Why buy it if you can make it?” I remember crafting an igloo for a science project out of one of my mom's Tupperware bowls and lots of bars of Ivory soap. That was a craft fail! I've learned that sometimes it is better to just buy it! I also realized that I was a nonconformist and that my tastes bordered more on the wacky and eccentric, and if I wanted something to have that extra edge I had to create it myself. I remember my mom would lovingly sew these beautiful dresses for my sister and I every holiday. She would use the finest fabrics and heirloom laces, and meticulously sew these dresses. I remember her hand embroidering designs and hand hemming the dresses. I also remember me literally destroying them to add my own special flair or touch to them. As I look back now, I can see why she thought that I was crazy...but then again, who in their right mind bypasses an Ivy League education to become a florist?


What is your favorite item to make?
I love making my handbags. I don't use patterns, everything is cut free-handed, and I guess on what size or shape I want to create. When I begin, I have no idea what the finished product will look like. So each one that I create is definitely a OOAK. I love watching the design grow into fruition.

What is your favorite food from Louisiana?
My favorite foods without a doubt are crab-meat stuffed shrimp and beignets from Cafe du Monde.

The reason that I create now is because it is what my dad calls my occupational therapy. I was diagnosed with a life-threatening illness and it sort of stopped me from enjoying the things that I liked best. Especially like working outside of my home. So rather than letting it get me down, I found other things to enjoy. I began creating things using my two favorite mediums, paper and fabric. I would create handbags as thank you gifts for the nurses and other staff that I would encounter during doctor's visits and hospital stays. Soon everyone began asking me to create bags for them. I enjoyed making them so much that I had to be forced to take payment. As I became more inspired, I also became in my mind less ill. From there a new business was born.


The graphic design section of my shop began because I enjoy playing with paper. Some days I can't make it to any of my sewing machines, but I always make it to my computer and my laser printer. I love designing new labels and stationery because I hate seeing blank paper. I have this wanton desire to rescue blank paper and give it personality.

What does a typical day look like for you?
My typically day begins with a coffee/breakfast meeting with my “boss”, my tween son Delles. He became the majority shareholder of the company after purchasing 25 cents worth of stock. Each morning while he waits for the school bus we choose a color, theme, and design of the the day. While he's at school, I use those elements to create 2 new things while he's at school. I also fill any orders that I may have, all while doing the typical household duties. 

If you could tell someone anything about Louisiana, what would you tell them?
I would stand on the highest peak in the world and rave about Louisiana. There's no place like it. The people are amazing, the food is divine, and the blend of cultures is phenomenal. We have some of the most caring and understanding people in Louisiana. We see past race, religion, and politics. Only in Louisiana could a security guard be a Mardi Gras Indian chief, a city coroner a jazz musician, and a college professor an in-drag burlesque dancer and no one bats an eye. That's what I love... we don't judge because we have a deep affinity for one another. There's something special that runs through Louisianans' blood, we know how to get by and make something from nothing. Whether it's a good pot of gumbo or Super Bowl champs out of Aints. This is a place where we really do care about your mama and them!

Everything in life happens for a reason. Your decision on how you deal with it determines your destiny. When life gives you lemons, don't make lemonade squeeze them into a Bloody Mary.

Butterfly & Ladybug is giving away to 5 new followers a set of address labels and for a follower of this blog a Handbag and accessory set!

In order to enter the giveaway, you must follow Butterfly & Ladybug on twitter & then visit the shop and/or beautiful website and comment below to tell us your favorite item! (If you do not have twitter or an etsy account, you can become a fan of Handmade Louisiana on Facebook & tell us how awesome this shop is!! :-)

For extra comments, you can "heart" Butterfly & Ladybug's etsy shop, tweet about all of the wonderful items, & write a blog post about this shop! You can also follow Handmade LA's blog!

Tell us with comments below what you did! Don't forget to leave your email incase you are the winner, as their will be more than one! :-)

Etsy Shop



Winners of giveaway will be announced on next week's featured artist post.

44 comments:

  1. Twitter follower @phxbne
    I like 40 Black and White Damask Personalized Address Labels

    ReplyDelete
  2. http://www.etsy.com/listing/65554292/120-blue-stripe-personalized-address

    I love those! I've been needing some return address labels. :)

    ReplyDelete
  3. Liked on FB as well.

    (forgot to post e-mail: natalily_3@yahoo.com)

    ReplyDelete
  4. I follow on Twitter and I love the CARAMEL VEGAN DREAMS-- Suede Hobo Bag, too cute!

    maryleebythesea(at)gmail(dot)com

    ReplyDelete
  5. I follow this blog on GFC!


    maryleebythesea(at)gmail(dot)com

    ReplyDelete
  6. I hearted the Butterfly & Ladybug shop on Etsy!

    maryleebythesea(at)gmail(dot)com

    ReplyDelete
  7. I tweeted about this giveaway!
    http://twitter.com/#!/MaryLeeByTheSea/status/38011613902680064

    maryleebythesea(at)gmail(dot)com

    ReplyDelete
  8. i follow butterfly and ladybug on twitter sjt42075 and my favorite is .100 2.25 inch Round LOVE BIRDS Wedding Labels or Cardstock Tags
    stracey2010@live.com

    ReplyDelete
  9. I am a new Twitter follower (@gcbabykisses) and my favorite item are these address labels: http://www.etsy.com/listing/65055381/40-2-square-purple-ribbon-damask

    grahamcrackerbabykisses AT gmail DOT com

    ReplyDelete
  10. I follow Handmade LA via GFC.

    grahamcrackerbabykisses AT gmail DOT com

    ReplyDelete
  11. Tweeted: http://twitter.com/#!/gcbabykisses/status/38127916952854528

    grahamcrackerbabykisses AT gmail DOT com

    ReplyDelete
  12. twitter follower- @mframe00
    I love the Anna Bag
    mframe00@gmail.com

    ReplyDelete
  13. I am a follower via GFC

    alexandra_digiorgio at comcast dot net

    ReplyDelete
  14. I liked on facebook!


    alexandra_digiorgio at comcast dot net

    ReplyDelete
  15. The Scallop Bag is so cool. I haven't seen anything like it before! I also love the most of damask address labels the best!


    alexandra_digiorgio at comcast dot net

    ReplyDelete
  16. I hearted the Etsy shop!

    Etsy ID: lexacd


    alexandra_digiorgio at comcast dot net

    ReplyDelete
  17. I am following them on twitter as jhitomi.
    Love the Geisha Bag. I'm of Japanese descent so it would be perfect for me.
    jhbalvin at gmail dot com

    ReplyDelete
  18. I am a follower of handmadelouisiana on gfc as jhb.
    jhbalvin at gmail dot com

    ReplyDelete
  19. Hearted the etsy shop under name jhbalvin
    jhbalvin at gmail dot com

    ReplyDelete
  20. I love the Gothic Delight Handbag and I follow on Twitter @kiddo47.

    kiddomsg at gmail dot com

    ReplyDelete
  21. I heart the shop on Etsy (houseofplush).

    kiddomsg at gmail dot com

    ReplyDelete
  22. I follow this blog.

    kiddomsg at gmail dot com

    ReplyDelete
  23. I am following on twitter and I like the cardstock tags

    kaylynn_0419@yahoo.com

    ReplyDelete
  24. I like you on FB! I love the Rockabilly Bag, I think it was made for me.

    Kimbahleigh666(at)gmail(dot)com

    ReplyDelete
  25. I'm following Butterfly & Ladybug on Twitter as @embracelets

    embraceletsdesigns at comcast dot net

    ReplyDelete
  26. I hearted your the Butterfly & Ladybug etsy shop.

    embraceletsdesigns at comcast dot net

    ReplyDelete
  27. Love the Floral Dreams Cosmetic Bag.

    embraceletsdesigns at comcast dot net

    ReplyDelete
  28. follow on twitter and I like the pink damask address labels
    skipthelaundry at gmail dot com

    ReplyDelete
  29. heart her etsy shop
    skipthelaundry
    skipthelaundry at gmail dot com

    ReplyDelete
  30. follow your blog
    skipthelaundry
    skipthelaundry at gmail dot com

    ReplyDelete
  31. tweeted
    http://twitter.com/skipthelaundry/status/39799259825971200
    skipthelaundry at gmail dot com

    ReplyDelete
  32. I follow on twitter @cerenaleigh and I love everything int he shop! My favorite is the purple wedding labels! So beautiful!

    Luckycldh(at)aol(dot)com

    ReplyDelete
  33. I also follow your blog! :)

    Luckycldh(at)aol(dot)com

    ReplyDelete
  34. i FOLLOW bldesigns on twitter suelee1998
    suelee1998 @ gmail.com

    ReplyDelete
  35. I like Handmade Louisiana on facebook susan s
    suelee1998 @ gmail.com

    ReplyDelete
  36. I follow on twitter and I love the Gothic Delight Handbag suelee1998 @ gmail.com

    ReplyDelete
  37. I follow your blog via gfc suelee1998 @ gmail.com

    ReplyDelete
  38. I heart her shop on esty suelee1998 @ gmail.com

    ReplyDelete
  39. follow butterfly & ladybug on twitter
    JessicaSage22
    I love the red ribbon damask address labels!
    jesage@asu.edu

    ReplyDelete
  40. hearted butterfly and ladybug's etsy shop
    smthngoldsmthngblue
    jesage@asu.edu

    ReplyDelete
  41. follower and love the 40 2" Square Purple Ribbon Damask Personalized Address Labels

    hockiemack at hotmail.com

    ReplyDelete
  42. hearted the shop as hockiemack

    hockiemack at hotmail.com

    ReplyDelete
  43. Wow these are truly some amazing designs!! I have never seen anything quite like them...love it. Great work!!! Very original!!

    ReplyDelete

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