This is the continuation of a series of interviews with indie supporters who are helping our community grow. If you missed part one, with Mallory from Miss Malaprop, you can read it here.

Today’s interview is with AnythingIndie.com. Thank you, Andrea!

Anythingindie.com is emerging as quite an asset to the indie community. How did it get its start?
I at first got the idea of blogging as a way to show my designs and my random thoughts to my customers that were already purchasing my designs. As I started showing my own work, I felt selfish only showcasing my work because there were so many great artists with great talent that I truly loved and was inspired by. I slowly started writing less about myself and more about the community that I’m proud to be a part of. I’m glad that I made the decision to focus on others because there are so many great people out there to write about. I sneak something about myself here and there, but it’s mostly about the great Indie artists and greats finds that are out there yet to be discovered.

Has it changed at all since you began?
I’ve gotten more readership, which I’m thankful for. I’ve also broadened my scope of potential artists so I can include a little of everything.

What has been your favorite thing about running anythingindie?
The random thank you’s that I get from happy Indie artists for featuring their work. That puts a smile on my face like nothing else.

What do you look for in the sellers you highlight?
It’s based on my personal taste. I like a varied selection of items and I’m not one to fit into a “box” regarding ideas. I can find beauty or interest just about anywhere.

The indie community has many advantages over mega-retailers. Which do you feel is its strongest?
I cannot stress how much I dislike the huge retailers and the way they push small businesses around. I’ve seen over and over mass produced items made in China and Taiwan and think of some poor child in a sweatshop making 3 cents a month for something that is sold at large chains for the sake of saving a buck. I’d rather buy handmade because I know that someone has put their heart and soul into that piece and that makes it worth 10 times more than anything mass produced.

What is the biggest challenge we face?
The prices that large retailers can charge versus what an Indie artist can charge and actually make a living from.

Where do you see the indie community in five years?
I see it growing. With sites like Etsy that support Indie, it can only get better.

What was your most recent indie buy?
Oh my, I have so much. I recently purchased a beautiful checkbook cover and business card holder from an artist that I wrote about. Renee Thompson of Thompson Designs does beautiful collage work. I’ve even commissioned her to make my header for my new site re-design that I am going to have started in April by Aeolidia Designs. After viewing my purchases from her in person, I loved the quality and hired her for my header work. Look out for the new site with her designs around the end of April.

You also create and sell on dreamsandjewelry.com. Can you tell us a little about your own work?
I create silver jewelry by metal smithing and enamel work. I first started out making gemstone jewelry, but I didn’t feel that I was pushing myself hard enough, so I bought tons of books, set up my work area, bought all of the required tools and experimented until I could create something that I was proud of. I’ve never had the opportunity to take any metalsmith classes so it would take me a bit longer to learn some tricks that I now use in my everyday jewelry making. Just firing up the torch makes me incredibly happy, ..it’s as if time stops when I’m firing and creating my jewelry pieces.

Do you have any new projects on the horizon?
Aside from a new site revamp, I plan on bringing out more pierced pieces. I started with some of my hand cut pieces such as the beetle and the butterfly and I plan on expanding that line to show even more variety.

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