Hi! My name is Corinna and I make and sell jewelry with real pressed petals for my shop, Ahoy Ahimsa. I live and work in Berlin – which is not only the capital of Germany, but also the creative capital of the country. My friend Eva helps me run Ahoy Ahimsa, and has definitely helped make the shop what it is today.
I’ve always loved flowers, and as a child I wanted to be a florist because I loved the smell of flower shops. When I moved to Berlin from Bavaria a few years ago, I was studying at an art college and there was only one way to make money: my petal business. The handmade scene in Berlin was growing at that time as well, and I had good sales. At the end of 2011, I quit my studies and my petal business became my main job.
Sometimes we plant the flowers ourselves, wait for them to bloom and harvest the petals. Other times we get pre-pressed petals from friends and fans. Next, we coat the petals with a transparent synthetic material, which is light and almost unbreakable. We smooth and polish the edges of the pendants by hand, then drill a little hole for the chain.
Etsy makes it possible for me to live my life the way I want. Since I left college I’m my own boss, and I’m the person who makes all the decisions. Etsy gives me a platform to reach a lot of people all over the world, and has provided everything I need to run my own business. A good idea and a little faith are the only other things required.
Since I started Ahoy Ahimsa I have become more courageous. I have learned to enjoy taking risks, and I see my business as a game. You never know what’s possible (and you can’t win) if you don’t play. It’s about trusting yourself, your ideas, your products, and the world in general. Being self-employed and working as an artisan was something I had always dreamed of. It has been wonderful to see all that is possible from running my shop. It’s still growing, and it’s exciting to see where it will go.
Model photographs by Erik Fischer, all others by Ahoy Ahimsa.