Meet the Vendor: Matchbox Studio
Who are you and what do you do?
We are Megan McKean and Agnieszka Zoltowski, and we are the creators behind Matchbox Studio based in Portland, OR.
We make jewelry combining geometric bronze shapes with tiny handwoven glass beads using an ancient bead-weaving technique called Peyote stitch. As you can imagine, we’re detail-oriented and extremely patient. Um, we also have tiny fingers and are near-sighted, which definitely helps.
You can check out more of our work here and on Instagram.
What’s the latest thing you’ve been working on?
We’ve been working on a new collection that will debut just in time for the holiday! The shapes are still simple and clean, but we’ve created more necklaces which include sterling silver chains, and one badass bib necklace…There are also some sleek and elegant earrings ranging from tiny to big and bold…there’s a pair of triangle-shaped dagger earrings that looks stunning on just about anyone…
What do you love most about craft show vending?
Meeting our customers! In the studio it’s a lot of time being present with objects and process, which is rewarding in its own way – why else would we do this if we weren’t problem-solving junkies? But when you’re out in the world sharing what you do, it’s a very different experience. It’s hearing about how what you do affects the world outside, and it feels pretty amazing.
We also love meeting other vendors and learning and growing together. The people who vend and attend the shows are an unusual kind who understand the value of handmade object. That’s rare and super special.
Where do you see your business in 3 years?
Wow. We love this question because at first it’s like, OMG we have no idea! That’s so far ahead! But then when we sit down and actually examine where we started, where we are, and where we’d like to be – the answer comes more readily. We just started this business in January 2014, and released our first collection in July. We are about to launch a second collection, we’re taking steps toward being carried in more shops nationally, and meeting more retail customers who believe in us and are excited to support what we’re making.
As we grow, we’ll be able to hire more people to help us make, market, and sell our work, and help us continue to grow…
Our vision is a studio/storefront in Portland where we’ll carry our own work as well as the beautifully designed and handmade goods of so many other Northwest makers we love and admire. At this rate, we’ll totally be there by 2017!
What do your customers love most about your product(s)?
Our customers love the streamlined design and attention to detail. We think they also love the surprise of realizing that what they’re looking at isn’t just one piece – it’s made up of tens and even hundreds of tiny handwoven little beads that make up the texture they’re looking at. We also hear a lot from our customers about how they’ve never seen anything like this before – combining the woven beads and metal together – the originality of our work is really appreciated!