HI Leann Terrill, thank you so much for agreeing to let me interview you. We’d like to get to know you a little. You have an Etsy Shop, Terrill’s Tiles, where you sell your handcrafted tile coasters, tile gifts and tile games. Wonderful shop!
- What got you started in crafting and what inspired you to make tile coasters?
I got started a few years ago when I bought an English Bulldog, Gunner. I really wanted some bulldog coasters and the ones that I had found in stores or online I didn’t like or they were asking way too much money for a set of coasters. I began trying different things and came up with my own. Tile is so absorbent and warm looking. My neighbors, family and friends saw them in my home started making requests and buying them from me. I then began doing craft shows and hence started my journey to Etsy. And I have loved every minute. Each set I do is so much fun for me, especially custom requests. Everyone has something different they want and I love it when they receive their order and are as happy as I was making them! Sounds a little sappy I know, but I’m not sappy though! ha.
- What inspires you in crafting?
Besides family and friends, just about everything, inspires me! I love creating and growing. I camp, boat, fish and spend a lot of time outside. I love coming up with new ideas while I am at work, the downside is I have to wait all day to get home and actually do it! Coming up with new ideas is so much fun and fulfilling. I spend a lot of time in tile shops looking at all of the different kinds they have, I dream up stuff to make while I’m there! One of the tile shops took some of my creations to their state tile show and I received a lot of orders from that!
- What is something you have learned in your business that you would like to share with us?
I have learned that is a lot harder than it looks! Takes a lot of hard work and time to efficiently run a shop and run it offline as well. It seems to people on the outside that it is pretty simple. Coming up with new creations, pictures, listing it all takes quite a bit of time. It is also so rewarding on the flip side! When you receive an email or phone call from someone absolutely loving what you’ve done, that’s pricless. I love what I do!
- Leann, you are currently involved with making tile coasters for Primo’s Pawtourage doggie gift bags. You are doing a Maltese dog design right now. What other dog breeds do you do and what would you like to focus on in the future?
Obviously I would love to do the English Bulldog next! I presently am selling, aside from Maltese, the English Bulldog, Labs, Yorkies, Beagles, German Shorthairs and Cocker Spaniels. I love all breeds and hope to fill my shop with as many as possible!
- Do you share your home with dogs or other pets, if so, what kind and tell us about them.
I have my English Bulldog Gunner. He is 5 years old and I bought him when he was 8 weeks old. He is a complete joy! He goes camping and boating with us! He can’t swim too well with the bulldogs short legs so he wears a lifejacket and loves riding on the tube! When you have a pet it truly becomes a family member! My daughters call him their brother, so funny! I believe everyone should have the experience of having a pet to love and love you back! I also have a pond in the back yard with 2 turtles, they are so much fun!
Where would you like to be in 5 years with your crafting business?
Definitely still selling and enjoying every minute of it. I hope it will always be as much fun as it is today! It is a great outlet and is “my own alone time” kind of thing! In 5 years both of my teenage girls will have probably have moved out so I could possibly be living in Hawaii or Australia crafting from there, that would be fun!
- Tell us a little about you…you are a single mom, how do you balance that with your outside job and crafting? Do your children like to craft too? What are some favorite things to do when you are not working?
As you have said, I am a single mom, working full time and crafting. That doesn’t sound as busy as it is!! My oldest daughter, Janise is 17 and works while going to high school so she only has 2 days off a week….not much of a crafter! My youngest daughter is 14, Bailie and she is a craft nut! She goes to all of the craft shows with me selling the jewelry she makes. And she makes quite a bit of money doing it. She makes wonderful jewelry that I wear almost everyday! On my off time I definitely love being outside all summer whether we are fishing, camping or just hanging out in our backyard absorbing the sunshine! I grow a large garden and love yard work! Gunner has a little pool that he lays in when we are all outside, he gets way to hot! Funny!
- One of Primo’s Pawtourage projects is a donated bag to the American Maltese Association Rescue Raffle at their National specialty in May in Atlanta. Have you done other charity work? Would you like Primo’s Pawtourage to contribute to other dog breed rescue efforts?
I have donated coasters, magnets and an English Bulldog Tile Game Board to the Southern California Bulldog Rescue. I think everyone should always do what they can to help the rescues. They are vital for our furry little friends! I appreciate all they do for all breeds in every community.