Wednesday, 7 April 2010

An interview with PrairieWindDesigns

This week I asked Misti from PrairieWindDesigns to tell me all about what inspires her to come up with the wonderful items on sale in her Etsy store. I've also picked out some of my favourite items to feature here on my blog.

Please tell us a little bit about yourself...

My name is Misti and I live in Frenchtown, MT with my husband and two adorable kids, ages 6 and 3 and our golden retiever, Prairie. I absolutely love living in Montana. From the mountains to the prairies, there is so much beauty in this "Last Best Place". I love the people who live here and the values that being a Montanan teach you. The drastic changes in weather and the vastness of the land remind you how small we as human beings are.

Olivia Clutch in Fresh Spring Colors

When and why did you start creating your lovely items and selling them on Etsy?

Growing up on a farm in Southwest Kansas, I learned the value of making something with my hands. My grandmother was the master of making something out of nothing - using whatever scraps she had to make needed items.

While I didn't take to sewing as a teenager, I found comfort in sitting at my machine those lonely nights while my husband was deployed. I learned to quilt while expecting our first child, and have been hooked on creating with fabric ever since!

I'm a stay at home mom and with that comes many sewing opportunities for little ones. I want to teach my children strong values and a good work ethic, so I started selling my wares at the local farmer's market where my son would make and sell pretzel sticks. He quickly learned how much work it was to make a dollar. Once winter hit and the farmer's markets were done for the season, I put my focus on my Etsy shop. I still involve my kids every chance I get. I bought a wall map and my son helps me mark the places where my items have been shipped. It serves as a great geography lesson for him and it serves as a reminder of my success and gives me inspiration to keep creating.

Which of your items do you most enjoy making?

I have a variety of items in my shop, all things I have created with fabric. I have a range of items from purses and diaper bags to barnyard coloring wallets for the little ones. I have many ecofriendly and upcycled items from reusable sandwich and snack bags, reusable grocery bags and toddler dresses that I upcycle from previously loved men's shirts.

I love creating something with my hands for someone else. I enjoying thinking about that person as I am creating each piece and when it is complete, I feel like I have given a piece of myself.

Reclaimed French Toile Eco-friendly Bag

I've just bought my first sewing machine and am trying to get creative. What advice can you give someone just starting out?

My advice for someone just starting to sew is to do what you love. Pick a fabric that you just love. That's where it starts. Start with simple patterns that can be completed rather quickly so you don't burn out. Reach out to others that sew in your community. I haven't yet met a quilter that doesn't want to share what they have learned. Most will even share notions, patterns and fabric to get you started.

Many thanks to Misti for sharing her creative process! Wishing her every success with her fabulous shop. Please take the time to have a look at some of her other wonderful items for sale: PrairieWindDesigns


  1. What a wonder feature! I enjoyed hearing out Prairie Wind Designs.

    Posting on a map is a wonderful way to stay inspired and teach your children at the same time.

    She has a beautiful Etsy shop!

  2. This is a wonderful interview. Misti's designs are charming and beautiful. Thank you.