Tuesday, November 15, 2011

Crafter Interview: Little Things By Anna

For years now, I've wanted to create a dollhouse. It would be so fun to add flooring, curtains, furniture, wallpaper and of course... miniatures. That's the best part!

Miniatures have come a long way over the years. They are so detailed and colorful. Handmade miniatures are the best because the artist really takes the time to add little details to each piece they create.

When I found Little Things By Anna on Etsy, it made me want to create a dollhouse even more. It brought back so many memories.

Anna's business started from a hobby that she enjoyed. She had seen pictures of tiny food items and thought they were the cutest thing that she'd ever seen. She went straight to Michael's and bought some clay to see if she could figure out how they were made. As Anna began to look at pictures and research different techniques, she fell in love with dollhouse miniatures. "I started making little cakes and then, of course, I needed a dollhouse bakery to display them in. I swore I would only buy 1 dollhouse, but now I have 4. A pink bakery, a bed and breakfast, a beach cottage and an old fashioned soda fountain. My friends would look at my creations and tell me I needed to sell them on Etsy. I'd never heard of Etsy, but when I visited the site, I knew it was a way for me to start my own business. I have enjoyed every minute of it!", said Anna.

Anna has been making dollhouse miniatures for 2 years and started Little Things By Anna in March of 2011. In her shop, she sells dollhouse miniature foods, mostly sweets, from polymer clay. She says, "I try to make them as realistic as I possibly can. I also paint miniature furniture to display the food items. My favorite style for furniture pieces is shabby chic. I've also been making mini wall hangings and wreaths for the holidays."

The best seller for Anna is her blueberry muffins. She makes the muffins look absolutely real and places them in a basket along with a muffin on a plate with a part of butter. She usually sells a glass pitcher of orange juice and a glass of juice along with it.

Her favorite product to make is a layer cake. She uses a product that makes the icing look real and loves to ice a mini cake. Anna says, "It usually takes as long to make a mini cake as it does to make a real cake."

There are many things that she would like to try to make. Anna has a box of pictures of sweets that she wants to try to make into a miniature. She says, "I just wish there were more hours in a day so that I could create all of the ideas I have rolling around in my head."

Anna works about 6-8 hours a day making and selling her miniatures. The other day, she worked 12 hours because she is trying to make Thanksgiving and Christmas minis for holiday shoppers. She usually makes at least one trip a day to the post office. Anna says, "I know how I am when I buy something - I want it now! So, when someone buys something from me, I drop what I'm doing, pack it up, and go mail it. I don't want my customers to have to wait on their minis!"

The best part, for Anna, of having her own business is that she can create what she wants, set her own hours and not feel pressure. She loves what she does and looks forward to getting up in the morning and going to her studio. Anna enjoys creating and making something that will make someone else smile.

Anna's future goals for her business is...

* to perfect her clay creations even more
* to grow her business and get more exposure
* to always produce a product with 100% satisfaction from her customers

When asked what her earliest crafting memory is, she replied, "I have been crafty my whole life. I have tried everything at least once. You should see my craft room! I sew, I make hairbows, I scrapbook, I paint, I refinish furniture, I collect antique glassware, and the list goes on. BUT my most favorite thing is to make miniatures. It never gets old and each piece is different. I'm always excited to see the end result."

Lastly, Anna would like to offer this advice for other crafters looking to start a business...
"Just go for it! Etsy is very easy to figure out and there is a world out there that's looking for that special something and it just might be what you've created. Invest in a really good camera and always make sure that you put your very best work out there. If you see a flaw, do it over. Never do something half way because your customers won't come back. You have to be a perfectionist when you own your own business and if you are not willing to go the extra mile, don't go into business for yourself."

You can find Anna's miniatures in her Etsy shop at http://www.littlethingsbyanna.etsy.com/ and on her blog at http://www.littlethingsbyanna.blogspot.com/

Here are a few more pictures of her adorable minis!

Thank you, Anna, for the opportunity to share your business insight with my readers!


  1. Thanks so much Angela for the wonderful article! Your blog is great and I love all of the tutorials you share.
    Anna :)

  2. Much informative and useful article… I like it personally…

  3. Thank you for sharing GREAT information! I love your blog. I just started blogging. I'm so happy that I came across your blog by searching out crafters. I love love love your blog!!!


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