I came across Miriana and her fabulous little dolls on instagram, and fell in love… The dolls itself are tiny little treasures, but she makes them even more special by presenting them in their own magical world; they all love to spend time outdoors, in nature, and they are almost all a bit shy. The creator of this magnificent world is so generous to share some words about her journey to success as a crafter and enterpreneur, enjoy!
Miriana of Dollitude
My name is Miriana. I am 34 and I live in Sofia, Bulgaria. I like sports, taking photos, hiking. I have a cat, here she is reminding me to always return to the simple and basic things. I would like to live in a small house with a garden and to grow my own food, someday I hope.
What do you make & how did you get started?
I make small creatures made of fabric. I sew them first and then I paint them. They are quite tiny. I make little box homes for them so they could feel comfortable.
How did you make the move from crafting for fun to crafting for a living? Was it gradually or was it all of a sudden – quit the job and just go for it?
I have always been making things with my hands and enjoying the process. I was posting pictures on flickr and some people started asking me for the little dolls and that is how I opened my etsy shop.
What inspires you and gives you new ideas? What do you do when you get stuck or what gets you in the right frame of mind again when things are not going the way you like?
I get inspiration from nature, animals, interesting old villages, the good in people. One thing that helps me when I get stuck is to take a break and go somewhere else for example in the mountains, biking , walking. When I get back I usually have a fresh perspective. Beside that it is important to always start. You can’t always be inspired but when you appear for the work it is easier for inspiration to come.
How do you tell others about what you do? What has really worked for your business and craft online? Can you share some of your experience and what you have learnt in promoting your work online?
Well, I struggled a little telling people what I do, because sometimes you get strange looks when you tell people that you make dolls :). But I am getting more comfortable with it. After all, time is our most precious thing and we choose how to spend it. I post regularly on facebook, flickr and instagram. Other than that I haven’t been promoting my work. I try to be versatile, stay fresh and most importantly stay me and show it through my work and
pictures. My creations reflect my values, longings and view of life.
What advice can you give others that are just starting out in creating their dream life? What would you have done differently when you look back now?
Be brave, don’t be afraid to fail and learn from your mistakes. Start simple, don’t ever stop learning and exploring. Don’t loose yourself.
I will quote that old song:
You got to sing like you don’t need the money
Love like you’ll never get hurt
You got to dance like nobody’s watchin’
It’s gotta come from the heart if you want it to work
Can you share 3 other blogs or crafter/creator websites you love & admire:
W I follow a lot of illustrators, crafters and dollmakers. Here it is a mix :
Ann Wood Handmade. Lovely work and person. She has a section on her blog called my big creative year where every Monday she posts insightful thoughts about the creative process.
I love listening to this podcast by Grace Bonney of Design Sponge.
Inspiring illustrator: Oana Befort’s website.
Can you recommend a novel?
Not a novel but I love Tove Jansson’s moomin stories, they are all so close to my heart. Here is a film about the author: Beautiful film about the inspiring life of Tove Jansson.
And a Non fiction book, preferably art or craft or business/marketing related that has really helped or inspired you?
Art & Fear: Observations On the Perils (and Rewards) of Artmaking by David Bayles & Ted Orland
Exciting upcoming new projects or products you are working on:
I am fascinated by block printing right now.
Thank you very much for sharing Miriana :) you can see more of Miriana’s lovely work here:
all photos in this blogpost – copyright Dollitude