This is our last week of the 12 Days of a Mitten Crafted Christmas! There is still time to take advantage of great deals and local gifts!
Dec. 16 - Tandem for Two Meet & Greet and 10% off TFT all day! All Artisan Meet & Greets are from 4PM-6PM at the boutique refreshments provided.
Meet Jennifer, the Artisan behind Tandem for Two.
Tell us a little about yourself:
I am an engineer by day and an artist at all other times I can fit it in! I am a unique mix of artistic and analytical, creative and detail-orientated. This balance helps immensely as I design my product line and run my small business. I love living in Michigan. Of all the places I have explored and traveled, I am always proud to be from the Midwest and happy to come home to Michigan. I love all four seasons that we have. I love how we are surrounded by water and that lakes, rivers, and streams are always minutes away, no matter where we are. And who doesn't love pulling out your mitten and showing where you live or where you've been?
I was born and raised in metro-Detroit, went to college and have family roots in the UP, and live and raise my children on the shores of Lake Michigan in Grand Haven.
Tell us about your Mitten crafted specialty:
My bucket list designs started with a list on canvas of all the fun things about our family. Everyone who saw it wanted one, so my family and I brainstormed all the things we love about Grand Haven and I started selling postcards in a local shop. They sold out within weeks and a product line was born! Within a year I have grown from one town to over 40 in four states. Everyone loves their hometown or state and has things they take pride in and it is such fun to discover and celebrate those things! This journey has been a whirlwind and one I wouldn't be able to do without my family. My teenagers help with inventory and assemble pillows and notecards. My husband helps with shipping and my business plan. A local stay-at-home mom and I sew all the pillows (almost 2500 now) and my sister and I create all of the designs. It has been wonderful to employ my teens and stay-at-home moms as the business grows.
What inspires you?:
I love being outdoors and exploring. A good hike in the woods or along the beach, kayaking down a river, climbing a sand dune, exploring a new place for the first time renews me and inspires me to find out more about a place and it's culture.
What is your favorite Michigan Christmas Activity?:
My mom grew up in the UP where her family cut down their own Christmas tree in the woods every year. Growing up in metro-Detroit, my family would drive north to cut down our own tree from the same tree farm each year and we would always take our picture in front of it. My husband and I continued this tradition once we were married and have continued it to this day with our children (including the pictures!).
What are three things you can't live without?:
My family, my faith, the lake, and Starbucks. (I know that's 4, but it's Starbucks!)
Who is your favorite Michigan artist or artisan?:
I love the pottery of Brad Patterson. He is a local artist in Grand Haven and I have bought his leaf pottery for years as wedding presents.
Why do you buy local?:
We chose to move to the town of Grand Haven because it had a vibrant downtown district - to us if the local businesses are thriving, then so is the town. I would much rather buy from local businesses and keep the money in our local economy and buy handmade, meaningful gifts rather than mass merchandise.
What is your most memorable and favorite family Christmas tradition?:
As a child, every Christmas Eve my family would attend a candlelight service. We have continued that tradition with our children at the church my husband grew up going to on Christmas Eve with his grandparents. We love the tradition, the memories, and the meaningfulness of celebrating Christmas in a place for several generations.
Upcoming Events: Dec. 17 - Llewminate Lighting Meet & Greet and 10% off LL all day! Dec. 18 - ArtGoodies Meet & Greet and 10% off ATG all day! Dec. 19 - CASignDesign Meet & Greet and 10% off CAS all day!
All Artisan Meet & Greets are from 4PM-6PM at the boutique refreshments provided.
Stop in and see us soon!