I'm so excited to share this feature with you! I have to say, it feels really strange to be on the other side of the camera, but I'm so delighted with the final video!
The last few months have been a rollercoaster of activity, so this feature being published now right before the holidays has provided a great ending to an emotional few months.
Sierra Juarez from Texas Monthly contacted me in July asking if I was interested in being featured in their Made in Texas series that would be published in November, and of course I said 'absolutely!!!!!!!!' We did a phone interview at the end of July. Sierra asked great questions and made me feel really comfortable to talk in great detail about my work and the events leading to how I came to be a bag designer. We were just getting back to socializing more at that time and it was pretty clear I hadn't talked to a human in quite some time because I talked for about 1 hour, non-stop. Thanks for being a great listener, Sierra!
The video shoot was scheduled for mid-August with Riley Engemoen of Netta Lou Creative. The day before Riley was scheduled to come over, we received a not-so-great phone call about a family health matter which left us feeling down and unsure about the future. While my eyes are a bit puffy and my voice a little shaky, Riley made me feel very comfortable throughout the video shoot and I think the video turned out amazing!
(I'm always behind the camera for our family videos, and now I totally understand how uncomfortable my husband and daughter must feel with my camera 2 inches from their faces, hah!).
At the end of August, we got another call that led us to drop everything (well, I had to drop everything; my husband just needs a laptop and phone for work) and fly to Pittsburgh and stay for the entire month of September, the month that I usually use to prepare for the holiday season to come. My photoshoot with Jeff Wilson, the *amazing* photographer for Texas Monthly, was delayed until mid-October, when I would be back and caught up on the things I missed in September.
With only leather scraps and acrylic leather paints stowed away in my luggage for a month away from my sewing machine, I practiced painting on leather during my spare time, and that led to the launch of my Handpainted Collection. In the end, I'm thankful for the time away as this handpainted addition brings a unique and personalized touch to my bags.
By October, our family health matter was much improved, and the road to recovery was underway. I came back home to Texas and felt like I needed to refresh my studio space to reflect the good news, so of course, I moved everything around right before Jeff was scheduled to arrive to photograph me in the space. You can tell from the photo, I'm happier and more relaxed - Jeff really captured that inner peace I was feeling being back home in a much happier state of mind.
Thank you Sierra, Riley, Jeff, Kayla, and Texas Monthly for this amazing feature! You made me look and sound so cool! 😊
Photos by Jeff Wilson and full magazine feature will be in the December issue of Texas Monthly.
See the video and read the interview here.