Sunday, April 19, 2009

Interview- Sierra Pelon Crochet

Today's interview is with Sierra Pelona Crochet.

How did you choose the name of your shop and how long have you been a member of Etsy?

Sierra Pelona is the name of an ancient mountain in Southern California, not far from where I attended music school. I liked the idea of an ancient mass of rock that stood fast throughout the millennia, as all else around it came into and out of existence over time. It seemed like a good symbolic anchor for my business. I opened my Etsy shop in February 2008.

What kinds of items do you sell in your shop and what inspired you to start creating them?

I sell an eclectic mix of hand-crocheted items, including elegant lace doilies, fun soft sculptures, cute catnip-filled cat toys, sweet Angel Cats, and dainty little hearts with delicate lacy ruffles.

I learned to crochet at age 11 when my best friend showed me how. I still have the first granny square afghan I made. Since then I've branched out to make Victorian-style lace doilies as well as soft sculpture items such as little cakes and ice cream cones, and catnip-stuffed mice and hearts for kitties.

Over the years crocheting has become an especially soothing and centering activity during my battles with ME/CFIDS. The gentle rhythm of the stitches often creates a meditative state for me where I am able to focus solely on the little world unto itself taking shape under my fingers in each individual piece I make.
Do you donate to any charities or do any volunteer work?

I used to volunteer with the San Francisco SPCA as a cat adoption specialist in their adoption outreach program, but health issues caused me to stop after 20 years with them. Currently I support the Mountain Lion Foundation and the Roar Foundation, two organizations dedicated to helping big cats. The Roar Foundation runs Shambala Preserve, actress Tippi Hedren's haven for endangered exotic big cats. The Mountain Lion Foundation is dedicated to preserving not only America's native lion but also its entire habitat as well, thus helping preserve all the other species within those habitats.
What are some of your favorite things about etsy?

I'm in awe of the stunning beauty of everyone's work. I love the sheer diversity and vibrant creativity, and I appreciate the empowerment of being able to run my own shop the way that's best for me.
Do you sell your items outside of etsy, either online or in retail shops?

I used to be a vendor at local street fairs and craft shows, but I haven't lately due to health issues. My work has been sold in The Soft Touch Gallery in San Francisco's Haight-Ashbury district, as well as in the Lojart Gallery in Morgan Hill, California.
Do you have any future plans for your shop?

More cat toys. I'm also experimenting with plarn, so look for bags crocheted out of yarn made from cut-up plastic bags in my shop sometime soon.
What kinds of hobbies and interests do you have?

I'm trying to learn how to knit. I also love learning about natural history and enjoy birdwatching and studying snails.
Do you have any animal companions?

I have a one-eyed cat Won-Ton, a stray rescued from a nearby neighborhood. Here is her Catster page (she has a diary!): . I also have several pet snails who live in a terrarium and eat the same fruits and veggies I do. They don't have their own web page yet; I guess I'll have to invent Snailster.
Do you have any websites besides your shop that you would like to tell us about?

I share another Etsy shop with my husband and fellow vegan Dean, , where we feature our photographs. My blog: .
How long have you been vegan and what made you go vegan?

After being vegetarian for many years, I went vegan in December 2003 when I discovered I could use ground flax seeds instead of eggs in baking recipes. There are so many reasons to go vegan! Animal welfare is my primary reason, but other reasons include environmental, political, economic and health.
Do you have any favorite vegan things, like books, websites, stores, etc.?

I like, a veg*n on-line community. I drool a lot over Vegan Dad's blog recipes!

I also recommend Robin Robertson's "Fresh From the Vegetarian Slow Cooker" (all of whose recipes are easily veganized), and Terces Engelhart's "I Am Grateful: Recipes & Lifestyle of Café Gratitude."
What are your favorite foods?

My tastes are simple -- I love basic things such as beans and rice, a mixed green salad, maybe some fruit for dessert. Slow-cooked beans are easy and so delicious! My husband is a great cook and he makes wonderful dal.
Is there anything else you would like to add or share?

VeganEtsy is fabulous! I love the solidarity with people who aren't vegan because it's trendy but who are genuinely committed to the cause. Together we can be a positive force on Etsy for the good of animals everywhere.


melissa bastian. said...

SNAILSTER! I love it! You should totally start them their own blog and call it that! I would definitely follow. :)

Anonymous said...

i LOVE those angel cats!