Isis Blackstock from Little Pieces Jewelry
Based in Los Angeles, CA
Let’s start with your story - how did you get started? What made you decide to start making jewelry?
I was born into a very creative family, both of my parents are artists, so art has always been a part of my life. However, clay came to me when I was pregnant and needed a creative outlet to keep me sane and busy. That outlet quickly became an obsession, I would (and still do) literally have dreams about designs I wanted to make, and I'd wake up so excited to get in the studio. I think that is really when I realized I love being able to make and mold with my hands and wanted to do it forever.
Who or what inspires you?
EVERYTHING! Honestly, I draw inspiration from anything that catches my eye. It could be from a tapestry, a rock, a cloud, clothes, emotions even. I have a 3 year old and sometimes the cooky things he draws inspire me. I like to keep an open mind and see everything as an inspiration.
What do you love about being a small business owner?
Being a small business owner has so many positives. For one its great to be in control of every aspect of your life and business. I get to create my own schedule, which means I also get to spend a lot of time with my family, and that's really important to me. As a creative I love being able to make what I love, and it feels SO good to see other people love it too. It's humbling and gratifying to know that people enjoy what I create.
On the flip side, what do you NOT like about being a small business owner? What struggles have you had to overcome?
I think for me the biggest struggle was trying to figure out how I wanted to be perceived. How I wanted to "brand" myself, how I wanted to engage with my customers and followers. It seems like it would be simple, but it's actually quite challenging to find the balance of sharing bits of myself alongside my craft. In this day and age the two go hand in hand, which can be challenging to navigate sometimes, especially because I've never been the most comfortable person with sharing on social media. I'm used to being pretty private, so it's stepping outside of my comfort zone for me, but I'm proud of how far I've come and I'm so much more confident with engaging every day, in fact I enjoy it now!
What sets you apart from the competition? What's your ‘thing’?
Hmmm, that's always a challenging question and also a hard thing to think about! Obviously every artist wants to be set apart and find their thing that makes them different, and for me I think I try to step out of my comfort zone and create shapes and designs that aren't obvious or easy to replicate. I really want each piece to feel like a work of art- unique and one of a kind.
What are you most proud of?
I'm most proud of my family and the environment my husband and I have created for our children. My husband is also an artist and I think I am most proud that we get to show our kids that you can live your dream and do what makes you happy, whatever that looks like to you.
Any tips or tricks?
Be authentic ALWAYS, even if its admitting fault or being uncomfortably vulnerable.
Aside from making jewelry, what are you passionate about? Any other hobbies?
I LOVE to cook, its hands down my second passion. If I'm not covered in clay, I'm in the kitchen baking or cooking up something delicious.
The real Q, what are you doing to stay sane during this weird time?
Oh GOD. Staying sane, that IS the real question. Honestly I'm trying to get lost in my craft, challenge myself, make something different and new, create every day. Besides that I have 2 kids, a three year old and a three month old, so they keep me pretty busy...sane? not so much.
So, what's next? How would you like to see your brand grow?
Oh man! I would love to expand outside of earrings. I have a few ideas up my sleeves and I am for sure taking this time to explore more of that.