Friday, July 8, 2011

Featured Member Karineh of JustColor

This week's featured member is Karineh of JustColor. Karineh is one of our founding members and a very talented knitter and crocheter. Her shop is filled with colorful textural accessories and interesting unique jewelry. We asked Karineh to tell us about her art.

Hi Karineh, would you be so kind as to tell us who you are, what you sell, what you are all about?

My name is Karineh and I live in Glendale, California. I am one of 3 children, the only girl (I wish I had a sister) and two older brothers. I have been creating since I was very young. I believe I inherited this from my mother’s side of the family. I also played the piano for many years which I regret stopping and replacing it with sports. The last part of my education was at Edinburgh College of Art, Scotland where I learned about many aspects of art and use of materials. It was here I realized the natural power in my hands and fingers.
I make handmade knit and crochet accessories for women. I also make jewelry using metal chains, glass beads or stones. I recently started creating a collection which is a mixture of all of my favorite elements; luxury yarns, chains, stones, beads and leather. It is still under development. I also like to mix some special vintage pieces in some of my work.

Who are your business inspirations?

The list could be too long and very difficult for me to answer. I am not necessarily inspired by large conglomerates’ success. I am more inspired by small, hard working businesses who have managed to succeed through their creativity and imagination.
I have an aunt who became a single mother of a 3 year old in the late 1940s. Despite having to endure many hardships she managed to build up a very successful business with her natural dressmaking and her amazing talent in crafting and creating. She also raised her son to be a very successful businessman.
I am inspired by my mother who I watched creating and crafting since I can remember.

Do you sell online full time? If not, what is your other business/job?

Right now I do work full time on my Etsy shop which means I am doing something for my shop 24/7. Even when I am dreaming. Lol! I have always worked in the fashion world, either as a designer, wholesaler or in the forefront of fashion in retail management and visual merchandising.

What is the biggest challenge when selling your work online?

The biggest challenge is to be noticed and get the word out there. I think most of online businesses would agree with this. Finding one’s customer base and marketing it appropriately is half of the battle.

Tell us about how you got your start selling your craft, either online or local?

I have been selling my craft on and off throughout my adulthood. I had not been creating too much for a few years. After a while I started feeling like something was missing from my life, the void and emptiness that only creativity fills. I decided to pick up my knitting again. One thing lead to many. I am a collector of objects, such as unique small vintage pieces, buttons and lace. I started using them in my work and my jewelry, which I initially made to give as presents. One day a friend of mine mentioned Etsy. I had never heard of it before. I came home, turned on my computer and wham, I created my shop that day. The rest is history.
I don’t do a lot of craft shows. I used to many years ago. I do some local, small craft shows if I can. I normally prefer to be at home surrounded by beautiful objects and yarns.

Tell us why you do what you do (your particular craft; why make it a business vs just a hobby).

I have to do what I do. It’s the need to create, to make something out of nothing, to introduce a different point of view and a new expression of how I see the world for whosoever might be interested. It’s very personal.
There aren’t a lot of people on this earth who make a living out of their passion. Why not turn your passion or your hobby into your business? I think that’s the highest pleasure anyone can get out of life.
Are there any tips or tricks to selling online vs local that you can share?

Maybe there is. Actually I am sure there is but I am also sure I am not the one to give advice in that regard. It’s a constant learning process and I am still a student. One thing I am sure of is that one must have the three Ps, Patience, Persistence and Perseverance.

A few of my favorite Etsy shops:

Now this is hard for me, since I appreciate so many difference and diverse work of art and craft, from one end of the scope to another, but here are a few of my favorites.
LBCpaper, StoneHood, BobbiLewin, infinityarts and many more.


  1. Fabulous interview! So great to get to know you a little better, Karineh! <3

  2. Loved hearing more about your background and creative process, Karineh!

  3. You are beautiful and talented and I loved learning more about you

  4. This is so interesting, learning more about the lives and multiple dimensions of my teamies! Great interview:)

  5. Awesome interview Karineh. Thanks for doing this!

  6. great interview! Love her jewelry and they're all such one of a kind pieces and so original!

  7. Great interview - I love learning about fellow team members!