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Friday, August 3, 2012

Our American Made story

Happy August! Can't believe how fast summer is flying by!

We received an email this week about Martha Stewart honoring 10 American Makers at an upcoming event they are hosting this fall.
If you are Creative Entrepreneurs who is making products that are innovative, inspiring and beautiful you should enter! We thought we would enter our little Swirlies into the mix and see what happens.  We will let you know how it goes. There might be some kind of voting come September that we might need some help on as well. 

Here is our page on the Martha Stewart site. We did notice that some of our profile text was cut off as well as weird cropping with some of our photos... so we thought we would re-post them again here:

Here is the full text that we uploaded:
Our American made story:

Welcome to Swirly Designs studio where we create holiday cheer all year!

We are Lianne & Paul Stoddard the artist and creators behind Swirly Designs where our passion for decorating for the holidays inspired us to combine our artistic skills to create our own collection of original handmade polymer clay ornaments.

Our story began in art school in Boston. I studied graphic design, while Paul majored in Illustration. In school, I dabbled in polymer clay. I made jewelry and pins for family and friends. I loved the way the clay was easy to use and I could create unique pieces.

After graduating, we both pursued work in our field but we were always drawn back to working with our hands. Going back to the medium that I discovered in school, we started to experiment with creating pieces in polymer clay.

We launched Swirly Designs right around the time we got married, in 2000. Being artists and designers we tend to be a little picky when searching for holiday ornaments for our own tree. Not finding exactly what were we looking, we decided to create our own ornaments using polymer clay.

Combining my graphic design sensibility and Paul’s illustrative talent we created whimsical pieces and started giving them as gifts to family and friends who then encouraged us to start selling them. We produced a small catalog one holiday season, taking our own pictures and designing the catalog ourselves. That proved to be a success, and the following year we got a booth at a local holiday craft show here in Boston. The response to our ornaments was so great! We sold lots of ornaments during that show plus heard lots of positive feedback from customers. This was enough encouragement for to us do this full time.

Each and every ornament is hand-sculpted, hand-painted and beautifully embellished by us as we interpret traditional holiday images through a contemporary lens all while juggling our growing family.

Our studio is always swirling with new and interesting holiday festivities and we are so blessed our ornaments have become part of so many people’s holiday traditions.  

 Wish us luck!

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