Tell us a bit about yourself (name, location, affiliations, personal stuff).
I’m Susanne Notenboom from The Netherlands. 31 years young. Living and working in Rotterdam and loving it. I can say that last year I completed a big goal in my life…making a full-time job of my hobby.
I started in 1998 with ceramics. Making my designs from start to end really gives me a kick. From chocolate fondues, colorful functional art to jewelery and more. Every day things can inspire me and there a lot of ideas in my head, sometimes it feels like exploding, but when I can think clear again I work it out and create. There is a strange need in me that likes the idea that ceramics are one of the crafts that has been here for ages and will always be here and in every country they have it. I Love to travel all over the world and off course i check out the ceramics everywhere i go. Last year i went to China for seven weeks (working and learning). It was really a great experience and I’m planning to go back for sure. The tuff thing about ceramics is the glazing (I think). And my traveling through lots and lots of testing, making samplers and experimenting with this is a long one that never ends. All of my work is stoneware or porcelain, really like the feel and quality of it.
What is the first thing you can remember making by hand? How and why did you make it?
That’s a tuff question…hmmm… A lot is going trough my head now but nothing really clear, to much… Think it was a creation out of sand and mud with my two hands and got some help from my feet. Loved to play outside and get dirty.
What inspires you? Where do your ideas come from?
People, listening, traveling, talking, looking, smelling, feeling, wonders, and on and on…
Ideas come from everywhere, every moment can have one, a fragrance can have one, a touch, a smile, good feelings, ordinary things, my mom and dad and friends.
What are your favorite materials?
Porcelain and stoneware, but also I love fabric, paper, wood, metal, nature. And when you combine them you can get some amazing results and surprises.
What is your favorite color?
All kinds of Greens.
What are your most and least two favorite films?
My most favorite two are: The Piano (with Holly Hunter) and Lords of the Ring
My least favorite two are: I really tried but… I block out bad movies…
What are you reading right now?
Harry Potter (like many people)
Any tips on selling handmade stuff?
For a little bit shy person like me it can be hard sometimes but… promote your self in all kind of ways, internet, mailing, costumer contact, website, participating in festivals and markets , good presentation like quality photographs and to seek your one style in this.
Write to magazines, don’t overprice and don’t under price, be enthusiastic and never give up.
Apart from creating things, what do you do?
I teach ceramics: throwing, hand building, glazing and decorating ceramics. Working with a great team where we teach and sell pottery supplies. Travel as much as I can, wished it was a little bit more…Having fun with friends and family and my two lovely cats.
How can Etsy be improved? Any feature requests?
It is hard to get a treasury! And yes it would be very nice to have a jewelery section in ceramics and pottery.