Lynn Woods is a content creator at Back to the South, a blog about DIY home decor and party planning. She is also a home decor stylist and founder of Back to the South Bling, where she sells sparkly goods. We chatted with Lynn to learn more about her maker business.
Artisan Joy: How did you get started with your craft?
Lynn Woods: I originally started making coffee mugs. In 2019, I realized I wanted to add something to make the cups stand out and mugs that weren’t just your everyday mugs. I am a lover of all things that sparkle. So, I decided to add bling to my mugs, which led to adding it to tumblers and other products.
AJ: When did you realize that you could turn your craft into a business?
LW: It started with friends and family, which I think is how many of us start, right? But when their friends and family began to reach out and ask if I could create a cup or tumbler, and the orders continued to come in, it was at that point that I knew I had something.
AJ: Where do you find inspiration for your creations?
LW: My inspiration comes from many places, nature, an outfit, shoes. I saw a pair of shoes that I loved on Instagram in baby blue which happens to be my favorite color. I made a cup inspired from the shoe! One of the great things I love about what I do is that inspiration can come from anywhere and there are so many design possibilities!
AJ: What’s something our audience would be surprised to learn about you?
LW: When I lived in the Washington, DC area, I had my own wedding and event planning business. This knowledge really helps when working with brides.
AJ: As creatives, we can be continuously creating and refining our art. How do you handle perfectionism?
LW: That is often a tough one for me, but I tell myself that part of the joy of creating is in the uniqueness of each item. I can bling a set of cups that have the same colors, but they still will not look exactly alike because of the stone placement, and in that lies the beauty.
AJ: Has someone ever criticized your work? How did you handle it?
LW: Yes, I have had people say they didn’t like my work or why does everything have to be so sparkly? I just smile and say that I know everything isn’t for everyone and that’s okay!
AJ: What advice would you give to someone who is interested in putting their work out into the world but feels vulnerable about it?
LW: It’s always so hard to put yourself out there! Even now I still get butterflies in my stomach because sharing your art with the world is a scary and vulnerable thing. My advice is to remember that everything is not for everyone. Yes, you will have people criticize you and people who do not like your work, and that is okay! It doesn’t mean your work isn’t great; it just means that it isn’t for them. No matter what, keep going.
AJ: What’s a cause that you’re passionate about?
LW: I am a community parter with the nonprofit organization, No Woman No Girl, whose vision is that no woman or girl will go without access to everyday essentials to survive a crisis or transition. I created The Safe Purple Collection, and 25% of the sales are donated to No Woman No Girl.
AJ: And, of course, we have to ask you this: What brings you joy?
LW: My family and friends, traveling, hosting community bling parties and coming up with new designs for Back to the South Bling!
Editor’s Note: This interview was edited slightly for length and clarity.