For most of her life, Nicole Stevenson had a different answer when asked, “What do you do?”
At age 9 when she started her first business, a handmade stationary shop housed in a refashioned refrigerator box in her front yard, she said she was a shop-keeper. In junior high when she snuck into the teacher’s lounge and self-published her first short story on the mimeograph machine, she answered, “I’m a writer.” In high school when her sketches of female nudes caused a stir among the nuns at her catholic girls’ school, she called herself an artist.
Then, things got a bit more complicated as she found that no one genre sufficed. Her path includes time as a creative writing graduate student in San Francisco, street artist on the Venice Beach boardwalk, costume designer, Hollywood flea market art vendor, DIY workshop instructor, co-founder of a non-profit that produced art shows benefiting charities, owner and designer of Random Nicole (an art-inspired clothing line carried at over 250 locations) and owner of craft workshop studio and retail store: The Craft Kitchen.
These days, Nicole can be found creating illustrations and designs for Show and Tell Design Studio, co-producing Patchwork Show: Modern Makers Festival and Craftcation: Business and Makers Conference, writing about business, making and her adventures for her Dear Handmade Life blog as well as answering the question, “What do you do?” with “I’m a maker.”
“It took nearly two decades of living a creative life to finally realize the one thing that all my pursuits had in common. Whether I’m creating a venue for crafters to sell their goods, a conference for entrepreneurs to build their skills, a logo for an art gallery or writing a story about my life, I’m always making something.” –Nicole Stevenson
Nicole and her ventures have been featured in The Wall Street Journal, NBC.com, The Los Angeles Times, Apartment Therapy, National Public Radio, Bust Magazine, Daily Candy, PaperCrafts Magazine, The OC Weekly and others.
When she’s not working, you may find her breaking up scuffles between her dog and three chickens, couch crafting while watching a film she’s seen too many times to count, playing guitar with her husband, sitting in her backyard with good friends and a margarita while playing Cards vs. Humanity, or squeezing in time for a quick trip to a lovely place where people are scarce and trees are not.
Connect with Nicole online: Facebook | Twitter | Instagram | Pinterest