"Believe in your imagination and your ability to transform your world." -Alexandra Stoddard
I couldn't be more thrilled with the staging of this special rainbow planter in Real Simple's latest issue on incorporating color into your home. At times we get caught up in not trusting our instincts and doubting ourself. This quote paired with the large rainbow planter encompasses so much meaning to an artist putting their heart and soul into the items they create and then exposing themselves to the world. Many are hesitant to do so because of the vulnerability and fear of judgement. However, if you don't believe in your own imagination, you will never know how much you could potentially change your own world. Thank you to the incredible Real Simple team who put this little feature together. I can't express how meaningful it is for me and hopefully inspiring for others waiting to take that leap of faith.
Styled by @catdash
Photo Editor @muzamagha
Creative Director @emilykehe
As a busy artist and mom, it isn't often that I slow down to document my journey or tell the story of how I got to where I am. Dionne Woods of The Turquoise Iris is an amazingly talented painter and creative coach, who takes the opportunity to share the story of different artists through a Podcast. I was so grateful when she reached out to me and asked if I would be willing to share my story. Click here to listen to a fun and engaging conversation between two artist, balancing life as mothers and a growing business out of their home.
I met the Gonnella-Erb family years ago when their Mother, Lauren, picked up Sensory Bins that I used to make for her daughters. Years went by and I connected with Lauren again when she began collecting some pottery from Indigo Road Studio. When I heard the news that her twin daughters were diagnosed with JMML, a rare form of Leukemia my heart sunk. I do not know them personally, but it hit home because our children are the same age and I can't imagine how my world would have been shifted by this, let alone during a global pandemic! It may not make a huge impact but I'm sharing this story to help spread the word and educate others. Please check out this book below that was written by Lauren, illustrated by her Art loving daughters and created as a form of therapy and a way to help others.
A message from Lauren:
“Dear Brave One” was originally written and illustrated as a way to help my children, Addison and Jacqueline, work through some of their feelings about the last year. Both were diagnosed with an extremely rare form of leukemia, JMML, in which the only treatment was a bone marrow transplant. A bone marrow transplant requires chemotherapy to wipe out all of your bone marrow, also known as your entire immune system. Every last cell needs to be destroyed and then donor cells need to be transplanted, take hold, replicate to be able to create new healthy red blood cells, platelets and slowly rebuild white blood cells and the immune system. I was their donor, out of 30 million people registered to be a life saving donor - I was the only viable option.
Amazingly, CHOP has this new experimental process that takes away most of my white blood cells, that would have otherwise made a lot of trouble inside their bodies, while leaving specific white blood cells that seek and destroy any leftover cancer cells. This experimental process made it safer to use my cells as their donor even though I was not a perfect match and decreased the likelihood of relapse. To my knowledge, only two places have this experimental technology and we are so very thankful to Children’s Hospital of Philadelphia and their amazing oncology teams for continuing to push for advancements in treatments of pediatric cancers. A portion of the proceeds from this book will go directly to CHOP’s oncology department so they can continue their work and give hope to families like mine. We hope that our book gives you a window into real life pediatric cancer, raising awareness and much needed funds for pediatric cancer research.
Link to purchase their book: Dear Brave One
Here’s a link to The Team Jackie and Addison Facebook Page-
Cranford’s Indigo Road Studio Pottery Collection Debuts in Real Simple Magazine
The Most Coveted Gifts for the Holiday 2021 Season!
Lindsey Shevkun Aguayo of Cranford, NJ recently made headlines as her modern and stunning pottery pieces were displayed in the Thanksgiving issue of Real Simple Magazine. I had been following her social media feed for some time and was so excited that her work was being recognized on a national level. If you are a collector of bold, modern, and interesting pottery pieces to display in your home and on your dining table, then you will take delight in everything that Lindsey creates for her Indigo Road Studio.
A creator at the heart, her “visual play with texture and color” will make you fall in love with every piece she proudly displays on her Indigo Road Studio website. And while her pieces sell insanely quickly online – she’s popping up at local holiday markets and there’s still time to grab come coveted pieces that will surely be treasured! I caught up with Lindsey to see how her art journey began, how she developed her pottery skills, and what’s the secret to owning a custom-made piece!
Where did you grow up in New Jersey?
I grew up in Warren County’s Washington Township, New Jersey. After graduating from high school, I was fortunate enough to experience life and art beyond the borders of the Garden State studying in Philadelphia and Rome, Italy.
Cranford, NJ was calling her name!
Shortly after getting married in 2012, my husband and I began our “house hunt” from Montclair, New Jersey to Raleigh, North Carolina. We ultimately chose to purchase our home in Cranford, NJ in 2013 because of the very “walkable” downtown area, the great schools, the strong sense of community and the proximity to destinations we frequent – such as New York City and the Jersey Shore.
Fun facts about Lindsey!
Simply put, I’m a “maker” at heart! I love the arts in its many forms and mediums–including painting, weaving, cooking, and gardening. In 2014, my first son was born. For the next five years or so my art took a “backseat” to motherhood until recently.
A creative family background
Creativity is definitely in my genes. My mother worked for Crayola so we always had tons of art supplies around the house. Relatives on both sides of my family were crafters of all sorts. Since he worked in Manhattan, my father would often take me into the city to experience art and live music. My parents thoroughly encouraged my love and pursuit of making things my entire life.
Lindsey’s artistic journey
It has definitely been quite a journey! Knowing I wanted a career that was creative, I majored in Art Education at Temple University where I studied Art in Philadelphia and Rome. After college, I started a job teaching high school art and was given the opportunity to explore a multitude of mediums through my 14 years of teaching. They included painting, drawing, printmaking, and ceramics. I was busy mastering different skills to teach my students, but also had my personal art business growing on the side.
Lindsey’s first art show
During my first year of teaching, I met a math teacher who a few years later would become my husband. When he saw my apartment full of paintings, he couldn’t understand how they were just sitting around and asked me what I planned to do with it all. Every time I would take him to an art show he’d tell me, “YOU are more talented”- and I would laugh at him. Long story short, in September of 2009, he set up my first art show in Jersey City. Since then, I haven’t stopped selling with him by my side.
How Indigo Road Studio was born
Originally, I began as Lindsey Shevkun Fine Arts and was producing and selling paintings and furniture. We would rent trucks and move an entire house load of chairs to street festivals. Then, art production naturally slowed down when we decided to have children. There was an 18-month window of time when my second son was born that I did not produce any art. I was soon craving the ability to make my own art again. This is when I re-branded my business to Indigo Road Studio. Indigo Road stood for my path back to my happiness and my best self. Although I didn’t know at that time it would eventually be pottery!
What led you to begin weaving?
When I rebranded to Indigo Road, I was still a mother of young children and had to find a medium that was kid-friendly. That medium happened to be yarn. My art always was a visual play with texture and color no matter the medium. Weaving was like a calculated textured painting!
How did the pandemic spark the pottery journey for Indigo Road Studio?
Indigo Road Studio was thriving on teaching weaving workshops, and I was loving it. In 2018, I reached out to Amy Howlett when she was opening The General Store Cooperative for space to host weaving workshops. She didn’t have the space for the workshops but instead suggested I make pottery to sell. I started with 4” tiny pots and boy it was a struggle, but I was determined! It had been nearly a decade since I worked on a pottery wheel, but I bought my own and really focused on learning. In March 2020, I was cooped up at home with COVID and my pottery Pop Up was cancelled. So, I held my breath in fear of failure and posted all my pottery work on Facebook and shared it to the local mom groups.
Indigo Road Studio’s pottery business took off
I began selling my wares one pottery drop at a time and the items kept selling. It was shocking and I kept on going. Every time I sold more, it would motivate me to keep building my skills as a potter and I would buy one more piece of furniture or equipment for my studio. The timing was perfect since the pandemic caused life to stop and I turned to my little space in the basement and would stay up all night practicing. Parenting and family life was very hard throughout the pandemic and pottery was my therapy and my escape. It truly was my Indigo Road, my path to something greater for myself…my ability to release the stress of life during that year and my ability to have time to myself and to reconnect with an art form that I loved back in college.
How would you define the style of your work and how did it develop?
A few characteristics identify my work overall, no matter which medium I’m using: my work has always had a modern abstract edge, it has always focused on texture, it has almost always been a product that was functional and typically had a lot of bold colors, and I never seem to produce two items exactly the same. In regards specifically to my pottery, it is greatly developing as I only really began throwing in 2018. The planters were a great start to really explore fun colors. As I advanced to more challenging forms and dinnerware, I found myself sticking to more subtle colors.
The colors of your pieces are one of a kind—how did you develop your own color palette? Does it change with time?
The color palette is really dictated by certain trends and colors that I think play well together or may be unexpected, but work. While layering and experimenting, I like to have fun with the planters and keep note of the combinations that work. My dinnerware is more consistent and subtle with so that food can stand out on the plate and people can collect and add pieces over time.
How do you choose your color combinations?
Lots of experimenting and practice. Glazes are a bit different than paint. You don’t see the results until after it has fired and it’s hard to control. The type of clay, the number of layers, and the temperature of the kiln can all greatly impact the results of the color. Sometimes it’s a total surprise!!
Congratulations on being featured in November’s Real Simple Magazine! How did this all develop?
One summer afternoon, I checked my email and had a message from a prop stylist from Real Simple. She asked if I was able to produce custom pieces since the website was sold out. At the time, I had no idea how they had found me. I soon discovered that one of my customers, Emily Kehe, who always had an eye for the greatest pieces on my virtual drops, is the Creative Director for Real Simple magazine!
Feelings once you held that issue in your hands?
It’s such a beautiful gesture to utilize a small local artist and give them a great opportunity when you are the director of a large platform. Indeed, I’m really just so grateful for what Emily did and the faith she had in me. Seeing the work staged in the magazine is a little surreal. I’m super proud, but still seem to always look twice thinking “Is that my work?”!
What are your favorite holiday pieces that will be featured at the upcoming holiday markets?Recently, I ordered mini 4” trees to go in my planters. More specifically Boxwoods, Olive trees and Pine trees. For every tree we cut down this season, let’s give back and plant another!
Can you share some of your favorite Indigo Road Studio gift suggestions for gifting?
Do you have a dream project you would like to realize someday?It seems I always have a ton of visuals in my head that I am hoping to realize. Currently, I want to complete and stage a table with a full dinnerware set. One day, I also hope to have a public studio space where I can connect with the community and they can see, touch and feel the quality of the work.
WNTR Maplewood Holiday Market- Checkout info for this holiday village and makers market at wntrinmaplewood.com Hot cocoa, fresh cut trees, local wares, music, kids activities and more!
Sunday December 12th 12-4
Urban Sewciety Makers Market
Saturday December 4th 10am-4pm
South Orange Downtown Open Air Holiday Market
Sloan Street Lot
Thursday December 2nd 1pm-6pm
I look forward to seeing you!
I decided to begin a blog to share my process, help answer questions around clay and running a handmade business and to simply give you a little insight into what is going on in my studio.
A little about me... I've been at this art production thing for many years now but recently began working in clay more intensively during the covid lockdowns. During that time, I invested all of my pottery earnings into building my own clay studio. The studio lately is under a bit of construction, but it is truly a blessing that has helped me balance my passion, my career and life being a mom to two young boys.
I have a ton of content I want to share, but first I want to hear from you and answer any questions that you may have. Looking forward to a little company on this clay journey!!
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