There is no better time to get to know your local artists and small business owners. Earlier this year, we were lucky enough to sit down with the extremely talented, Ashley Reagan, the artist behind ibleedheART.
If you didn’t already know, ibleedheART is an online shop that sells handcrafted, embroidery thread earrings, paintings, and crepe paper flowers. Join us as we delve into the background of this wonderful shop and its creator!
A Little Bit About Ashley
Thanks so much for taking the time to share your story with us! The team here has admired your work for quite some time and would love to get a little behind the scenes with you and your business. How did ibleedheART start and what inspired its inception?
ibleedheART: My business, ibleedheART was born in 2012 while working a desk job to pay off my student loans. At the time, I was hand painting on canvas shoes after work as a creative outlet, but was able to quit my job in 2014 to pursue art full time. Eventually I began creating feather and butterfly wing earrings made not from feathers or butterflies, but embroidery thread, and stopped painting on shoes.
I added crepe paper flowers to the mix in 2018 after my Granddad passed away. Growing up, I remember visiting my grandparents and loving the flowers and plants that my Granddad had so lovingly cared for and grown. He always had marigolds mixed in with the vegetables he was growing in his garden and knew all the names of the flowers we asked him about. He even had a good joke or two about flowers! I wanted a way to honor and remember him. I wasn’t blessed with his green thumb, but was instead gifted with artistic abilities. Crepe paper flowers seemed to be the perfect fit since there was no green thumb needed!
Marigolds were among the first flowers I made, taking a real flower to dissect it and see how each petal was placed, so that I could make a crepe paper version as close as possible to the real thing.
I think it’s really lovely that you’ve found such a beautiful way to pay homage to your Granddad. Throughout this journey, have there been any challenges or unexpected benefits that you’ve found?
ibleedheART: The challenge of offering crepe paper flowers has been finding the right market in my area, but I love having the freedom to create beautiful flowers and to be surrounded by them every day while I work!
Seeing the joy that they bring to people is such a highlight and the whole goal of my business. I believe it is so important to spread joy and brighten peoples day as much as we can. I want others to experience the same joy I felt as a little girl in my Grandad’s garden.
Expressing yourself through outlets that we enjoy whether it’s handcrafted goods like crepe paper flowers or gardening, can be especially therapeutic and it’s great when others can see the beauty in it as well!
For those who are looking to also grow and flourish in the artistic community, do you have any business tips or know-how that you’d like to share?
Follow your heart and do what you are passionate about. Be original and your passion will show through your work.
ibleedheART With Paper Mart
Alright for our readers who don’t know yet or are just getting familiar with your work, how has Paper Mart helped you in developing ibleedheART?
ibleedheART: Starting out, I needed an affordable crepe paper I could play around with and to learn techniques for flowers, and I stumbled upon the 100 gram paper that Paper Mart offers. I loved the thickness and stretch of the paper after I purchased a few rolls to test out and I then quickly ordered one of each color available on the website. I was hooked!
Shop Ashley’s Paper Mart Favorites
I love the range of pinks and purples offered, as well as the moss green crepe paper for leaves and stems.
These beautiful images are courtesy of ibleedheART. If you want to learn more about Ashley’s creations, check out her website and social media (Instagram, Facebook)! To keep up with Paper Mart news, content, and more, subscribe to our email list here. You’ll be the first to know about any new blog posts, seasonal promotions, and sales.