Thursday, March 18, 2010

Member Interview

Happy Friday!  Here is the first of our weekly member interviews! 

I'm sure you’ll immediately recognize this avatar. 
Now, here is the wonderful and talented woman behind that infectious smile we all associate with GlazedOver!

Please tell us a bit about yourself.

My name is Jill and I'm a potter, mother, writer, and distracted academic willing to argue at length that the glass is indeed half full.

I live with my husband, our two daughters and our cat, a 10 minute walk away from the shoreline of the
Great South Bay. A salty, 15 minute ferry ride straight south takes us to Fire Island and after another 10 minute walk, we arrive to the shore of the Atantic Ocean. I love living so near to where I can better visualize the vastness of the planet.

I love the story about how I came to name my shop. A longtime fan of the English language, I was looking for a clever pun for my shop and was having trouble finding one that was still available. Then I had a conversation with my mother who was telling me about how annoyed with my father she was. She was trying to tell him something important but his eyes "glazed over" and he wasn't listening at all.
"THAT'S IT!!!" I shrieked.
"What's it?" she asked.
"I'll call it 'glazedOver'! Perfect!"
...and the funniest part was that I, too, hadn’t heard a word she had said. I did get a great shop name, though, even mom had to agree!

Several years ago, I was in graduate school at the
University of Chicago studying the archaeology and languages of the ancient Near East. My course load and work schedule were intense and oppressive, so I needed an outlet to release the tension. I found a pottery class at a local art studio and fell in love immediately. There was something about the clay that suited my hands and fed my soul. Today, I work from my home based studio and I make eclectic, colorful works of functional ceramic art.

How did you learn about Etsy Project Embrace?

The answer to that question has to start with the answer to a different question and that is: “How did you come to meet Laura Slocum?” I first noticed Laura while I was being a fly on the treasury walls. I was new to Etsy and was trying to learn the ins and outs so it was common for me to peruse the treasuries frequently. I couldn’t help but notice Laura. Not only were her treasuries spectacular, she was also clearly the belle of the ball! People would comment on her treasury and she’d comment back. She had a way of creating a community out of a collection of 12 listings. I was smitten. One thing led to another, I can’t even remember quite how any more, but soon we became fond friends. There was a gap of a few weeks during which we didn’t email each other and then I saw not one but several treasuries dedicated to Laura and filled with worried well wishes posted by her friends and family members. I could only imagine what was going on. I later learned that Laura was diagnosed with ovarian cancer.

Etsy is a fascinating and odd place. Although most of us have never been within huggable distance from each other, it is still quite possible to develop a deep connection and affection. I felt that way about Laura. I was worried sick.

It turns out that Laura has a beautiful, positive, and healthy attitude. She spent more time comforting me than I did comforting her. She has taken all of us in to her life and keeps us posted as to her progress. She even lightens our loads by interjecting her very specific brand of hilarity here and there. She is a breath of fresh air. When Etsy Project Embrace was first forming, I knew I wanted to be a part of it not only to work towards the fight against cancer but also as a way to show a tangible manifestation of my love and support for Laura.

What is your favorite item in your shop at the moment?

I love my tiny dipping bowls. I throw them “off the hump” on the pottery wheel and they seem to come out of my fingers almost against my will, so I make gobs and gobs of them. They provide a compact canvas that handles glazes very well so I love to experiment with them.

What favorite vintage or antique item do you own, and why do you cherish it?

I have the brass Sabbath candlesticks my mother used that used to belong to her grandmother. According to family legend, my great grandmother brought them with her when she sailed from Europe to America. During the trip, one of them fell off a top shelf and was chipped in the process. The history of my great grandmother’s travels, frozen like that in the candlestick, is very dear to me as it was to my mother.

What is your favorite handmade possession?
I have a crocheted blanket that was started by my maternal great aunt but she passed away before completing it. My paternal aunt finished it for me and she and my mother gave it to me as a wedding shower gift. It is very special to me.

What do you collect?

People to love. Just that, nothing else. I have a humongous collection.

Where would you like to be and what do you hope to be doing ten years from now?

In ten years, my daughters will be 20 and 18 and I hope to be with my family doing what I love as close to where they are as possible.

Jill, thank you so very much for allowing us all a peek into your life, your art, your shop, and your thoughts!

♥ ♥ ♥ ♥ ♥

Happy Weekend, Everybody! See you here next Friday with another interview.

With Hugs and Love, Mollie


  1. it is with joy and pleasure to read about Jill .. she's one of the warmest and most vibrant people i've 'met' on etsy ... a true gem of a woman. I thank my lucky stars to 'know' her but now of course i know her a little better! I wish the stars & more for you Jill XOX

    Well done Mollie .. !! These friday posts giving us an insight into our fellow team members will be momentous .. XOX Kerrin

  2. Jill, I loved hearing about how you got your shop name! Your poor mom! Haha! Thanks for a glimpse into your art and world! And Mollie, thanks for bringing it to us. :D

  3. It's fantastic getting to know you better Jill! I love the story about your shop name, ha!
    I really enjoyed and agreed with all you have said about Laura, you said it far more eloquently than I could have done.

    Thanks for a great interview Mollie!
    Kim x

  4. I lOVE JILL!!!
    Thank you so much for this wonderful feature on this amazing woman!

  5. I just loved reading and seeing Jills work spaces... I love her things and how wonderful to read her thoughts. nicely done Mollie! I just LOVE this group...such a vibrant and diverse community!

  6. A fabulous and warm interview! Having convo'ed quite a few times with Jill, and having followed her blog for a while now, I have learned that she has a certain way with words and a true love of life and people! Here, I loved learning about the shop name and about Jill's connection with Laura and the team. Thanks to both of you for making this possible! By the way, I LOVE the tiny dipping bowls as well... they are so so handy!

  7. What a great choice of first interviewees: JILL! A lovely job, both of you, Ms. glazedOver and Molllie!

  8. I've always loved your shop name and the story that goes along with it is too funny!

    Jill, you're a gem and it's been such a pleasure to get to know more about you and your passions.

    Every time I eat an artichoke and dip my leaves in my plain little glass bowls I think about your dipping bowls and how much more I'd enjoy my artichoke eating experience if I had yours!

  9. What a wonderful interview to read as I wipe away my happy tears.
    Thank you Jill and Mollie, it was a delight!

  10. Thank you all for such delicious comments. This is certainly going to keep my ego going for, what?...two, three days! ;D

    No, really, it has been a joy! It was a privilege to get to work with Mollie on this interview and finding her convos in my inbox always brough a huge smile to my face. My only regret is that she isn't living next door to me here in New York so I could give her actual hugs instead of virtual hugs.

    Thank you, Mollie! You've long been a part of my humongous collection.

    Gosh, I love this team.

  11. wonderful feature - thanks for giving us a glimpse into your life.

  12. What a simply fantastic interview! Thank you for sharing a bit about your world and your inspiration. Simply Lovely!

  13. Wonderful interview !! I agree with her completely on how Etsy is a fascinating and odd place :)

  14. One of the best interviews I've read.

    Jill has a way of grabbing you to her and holding you tight - and I think her warmth and humor came across here perfectly.
    Thank you, Mollie, for conducting this interview.. and to you, Jill, wishing you the stars and the moon! : D

  15. wow!
    can i love jill anymore than i already do....? i have admired and wanted to possess some of her pottery since i first saw the "sand and sea" salt and pepper shakers last spring or so. and talk about a sense of humor..jill, you are the master!
    thank you so much for brightening my life every time i have messaged back and forth with you!
    and mollie...thank you for a wondrous and insightful interview and i cannot wait for the next one!

  16. i didn't expect to cry thru this interview............ but yes, i did. I have to say that Jill is such a unique individual and we first talked about her family's very amazing tree house that she pictured on her blog awhile back. After my surgery, she was one of the first people on board and she's been a source of comfort to me on a few different issues ... and of course, her sense of humor - she's almost as funny as i am............. LOL!
    Thanks, Jill, for your kind words and being apart of our lives - as well as you, miss mollie ann, (and your brand new eyes!) :D laura

  17. OHHH and i'm a proud owner of a salt/pepper shaker and vase set from "GLAZED OVER" ... and i think i used to ALWAYS listen to EVERYTHING my mom said...............

  18. Hey Jill, I enjoy reading this and get to know a little bit more about you. The color of your work is fascinating. Love the story of your shop's name :)

    Looking forward for the next interview, thank YOU Mollie :)

  19. what a beautiful interview!- jill what a pleasure to read about you, your family and ceramic work along with your story regarding your inspiration for joining the team-- (that sassy laura lady!) and mollie-- terrific job putting this post and interview into action!!