I was a big fan of Mary’s work before I was lucky enough to get to know her when we were both members of Team EcoEtsy (I’m not on the team anymore, since you have to sell your crafts to be a member). Mary is compassionate, kind, and I love that not only is she committed to creating healthy, truly natural beauty products but her company Herban Crafts gives back to the community through job training programs. Ethical handmade products that give back? Don’t mind if I do!
Honestly, I don’t know how Mary does it all, so I’m super thrilled that she took some time from her schedule to answer my 5 questions!
1. Tell me about how you got started crafting.
I’ve been crafting as long as I can remember. My favorite gifts were ones that I could assemble or make into something (like a terrarium kit, a beading loom, or dÃ©coupage kit). I always had crafting books around the house, including “The Pooh Party Book,” that was filled with ideas for invitations, food, decorations and party games, all of which you could make yourself and I was constantly creating objets d’arts :)
2. What draws you to eco-friendly materials?
For one thing, I generally find them far more aesthetically pleasing than most non-eco friendly materials â€“ the look of glass, metal and wood are so much more appealing to me than, say, plastic. Also, I was raised, by example, to consider how my actions impact the environment, so I am always aware of what I use and how I use it might affect others downstream.
3. What inspires you?
Healthy, whole foods inspire me! I love cooking, eating, photographing, writing about and talking about food. Most of the ingredients I use in my products are USDA Certified Organic food-grade, and most of the scents are inspired by foods I love.
4. Who are your crafty heroes?
I have many, many crafty heroes that I’ve met through Hello Craft here in DC, Etsy, Hello Etsy and other arts/crafts organizations. I especially admire the crafters I’ve met who are super creative AND business savvy AND super organized (like the awesome women behind Hello Craft). I believe that people with this combined set of skills can help make the world a better place by spreading the word about the importance and viability of handcrafted/DIY.
5. Where can folks find your work?
I sell my work at craft shows, primarily on the East Coast, through my Etsy store, my own online store, and through my brick and mortar partners. This weekend I will be exhibiting/selling at the Mother Earth News Fair in Seven Springs, PA, which should be a fun and interesting event.