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Monday, April 16, 2012

Featured artist: Michelle from misala

This Monday I bring to you Michelle from misala she has this whimsical shop where she sells clutch purses and bags, check it out!

1. Tell us as little or as much as you would like about yourself.
My name is Michelle and I currently live in Dubai, United Arab Emirates with my husband. I was originally from Hong Kong, though, and we are just moving to follow my hubby's job. I had never lived aboard before so it's been a stressful experience adjusting to this new lifestyle. Time flies and it's already two and a half years since we came! Looking back I am really grateful to have this opportunity to see the world a little better from an exciting city! 

Emerald Dreams iPad sleeve
2. What do you sell?
I design and make bags and purses from the little work studio in my home and sell them! I love working with kiss locks as they allow unlimited room for me to express the artist inside me. So basically everything you will see on my shop has these two little knobs on top as the locking mechanism. Aren't that cute?

3. Why handmade?
 When you buy handmade, you get more than just the product but also the attention to detail that the person has put into creating the item. Regardless of how well the quality is controlled in a mass-produced item, big corporations can never beat small-scale handmade items in terms of quality and creativity. Handmade items are created with the heart and soul of the artist and deserves to be treasured.

Whimsical blue cupcake mini coin purse
4. Where does your inspiration to create come from and/or your inspiration in life?
My inspirations come from everything around me! Initially I started creating because I was unable to find the perfect bag that I would really want to use, so I set out to make my own ideal bag from what I liked most! However lately many of the inspirations came from my fans who were very supportive and gave me so many interesting bag and purse ideas, with the final product becoming a bestseller in my shop!

5. Besides creating what else do you do? Do you have a full time job?
Misala Handmade is my full time job! Bag making is much more time-consuming and labor-intensive than it looks and I can hardly finish 3-4 pieces sitting at my work desk all day! As my business grow, we are eating out more frequently so hubby is going to complain soon! Honestly he shouldn't complain since his handicraft is terrible! To give him some credit, he's been helping with some of the secretarial work so I can get a good night's sleep every evening, but still I wish there were 48 hours in a day!

Cute fiery red clutch purse
6. When did you start thinking you were an artist?
Educated as an engineer in collage, I really did not think much about myself as an artist until one of the customers requested a signature on one of the creations she bought from me. Suddenly I realized that in addition to the people who are purchasing my little bags and purses to carry with them or the ones who are looking to get a gift, there are also ones who are collecting my creations as pieces of art! That was an encouraging thought to push me towards expressing myself through my creations, instead of focusing entirely from the usability standpoint. Who knows, perhaps her small investment will be hugely profitable after many years!

7. Who has been most influential in your craft work?
Apart from my husband who had been really supportive throughout, I really admire Lynda from forestprints who is so talented in creating all sorts of colorful creative items for the last 7 years! We met her last year at her studio and she is a great inspiration for me starting my own brand!

8. Where would you like to be in five years?
We do not know where we are heading after UAE yet, so I am totally without a clue which country we will be based in five year's time. One thing for sure - I am taking Misala Handmade wherever we go and I will continue to ship my creations for the years to come!

Fairytale farm mini coin purse
 9. Is there anything you'd like to try doing that you haven't done? crafts, sports, life in general?
I'd want to try sewing a dress for myself! It's the same concept as the bags, really, since it is really difficult to find the ideal dress with the perfect design and fabric. There will be so much more options if I get to control all aspects of dressmaking.

10. Besides online where else do you sell?Apart from online, there is expanding list of shops worldwide that carries my creations. I maintain this list on my facebook page: https://www.facebook.com/misala.purse/info and feel very free to check them out if you are near any of them!

ways to contact you:
website and blog under construction


  1. Michelle's little purses are incredibly adorable! I love how whimsical each piece is!!!

  2. What a happy colors! I love the style ;)


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