Friday, March 26, 2010

Member Interview

Who are you? Bre of btaylorquilts

Please tell us a bit about yourself.

Hi There. My name is Briana Taylor, and I am the owner of AND Obviously I chose the names of my shops by using my own name. Nothing like a little self promotion. As a fine artist, I find that you should associate any business you conduct using your own name. Anyway, that's what works for me. When showing in a gallery or exhibiting somewhere it's better to be known as yourself. I'd rather have someone say "that's a Briana Taylor painting" than "there's a painting by Oddball Oddities" (I'm sorry if there is a shop titled that, I just pulled it out of thin air :) I sell quilts and quilted home goods at btaylorquilts and paintings and prints at brianataylor.

I graduated from Mt. Holyoke College with a Bachelor's in Studio Art and English. Boy do I miss school ... I loved it!! Now, I split my time between quilting/sewing, painting, and working my full time job. I'm happy to say that my "real" job is within the arts world, I'm Coordinator for a local arts organization called Easthampton City Arts. A friend of mine and I have been awarded a grant through our local Cultural Council to paint a mural this summer and we are currently working on designs. All of this does not leave much time for a personal life, but I do manage to squeeze in socializing and going out for lunch and dinner a lot. I've just moved into a new home and am deep into remodeling and decorating, which I write about on my blog, I spend a lot of time writing about daily art/craft life and personal things that I really am into.

Recently I've been asked to exhibit at the Springfield Museum of Fine Arts here in Massachusetts. Turns out the curator came through my studio during December 2009 Open Studios and liked my work. She emailed me a few days later asking me to exhibit! The show is not until October 2011, but that gives me lots of time to produce about 18 new paintings for this show!

How did you learn about Etsy Project Embrace?

I had been friends with Laura Slocum (creativelytangled) before she was diagnosed with ovarian cancer. When I first joined Etsy I made friends with Jenn Reese Robinson (jennreese7) and her niece Kelly (sweetnessjewelry) and was introduced to Laura through them (Laura being Jenn's sister). We collectively made lots of treasuries supporting each other's work and I consider them great friends, even though I've never met any of them in the flesh!

Personally, I've been involved with the American Cancer Society most of my life. My Uncle died from melanoma before he was even 40. I was 15 and he really was a surrogate father, taking me and my cousins on vacations and living right around the corner from us. It was a hard loss for me. Even harder, March 15 last year, my Mother died from melanoma as well. This month marks the one year anniversary on the Ides of March. She was only 71 and extremely active and healthy. My father passed away eight years ago from esophageal & lung cancer, and my maternal grandmother died from colon cancer. I, myself, have had skin cancer, but not the killer melanoma. Cancer has taken some very important people from me and I wholeheartedly support the ACS and the work they do.

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

My green quilt. I'm making one for myself! I'm also making another one for the shop simultaneously because you will note that it says "made to order" right now.

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

My Mother's antique Governor Winthrop slant front desk.

What is your favorite handmade possession?

My Father traveled to Africa a lot. He brought me back a handcarved wooden owl from Chegutu, Zimbabwe, by Boswell Petse. I cherish this owl.

What do you collect?

Firstly, I collect fabric. I also collect vintage chalkware religious statues of saints. I love religious iconography, like Russian and Greek golden icons of the Madonna and St. George and such. I'm not a religious person, I just love the artwork and the history.

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

Pretty much the same thing, maybe working more on my own art work. I'd like to be featured on the Etsy "quit your day job" series!! I'd also like to find a life partner.

Thank you Bre, for allowing us all this peek into your thoughts, your art and your life!


  1. Wonderful interview! What a treat to get to know Bre a little better!
    Best of luck to you with your upcoming show!

  2. lovely shop, lovely space and talented artist! I really enjoy meeting the members of this wonderful team through this well done interview series!

  3. What a gorgeous shop and it's so nice to get to know Bre better!

  4. Thanks for letting us know you better, Bre! You have come out on top!

  5. OOh! one of my favourite Etsians! I love Bre's art, and am a proud owner of her fabulous work:O)

  6. wonderful interview! great to know a bit more about you and your life and work, Bre!

  7. Great interview! I was browsing your shop yesterday. Love it!

  8. How lovely to get to "meet" you Bre, and what a great interview Mollie!

  9. Wonderful interview! I love your work, and your green quilt is very special! Great to get to know you a little better Bre!

  10. i LOVE these interviews! it's great to get to know our teammates a bit better!

  11. I do LOVE these interviews also, they are very fun. It is especially great to see my good friend, Bre here! Congrats on your new home!
    Wonderful job dear Mollie. xo

  12. It's so wonderful to get to know Bre a bit more! I've been a long time fan of both her shops and love that I'm in the same amazing team with her and all you lovely talented people!

    Another great interview, Mollie! This interview series should be every day, I just love it! This is going to take forever to get through our list of members (definitely not a bad thing)! :)

  13. Oh my goodness what a wonderful blog you have here, I just stumbled upon it, and glad I did. I'm your latest blog follower now, and I'm off to check out your FB fan page.

  14. What a great interview! It's always interesting to learn of the connection with EPE, and so many of us have that connection to cancer and the ACS. Briana, your work is so so lovely. Thanks for sharing.

  15. What a great story of art, friendship and life! Thanks for sharing it with us!

  16. beautiful and moving interview .. i'm only just getting to know Bre so this is a gorgeous way to find out more about her! LOVE the interview, thanks to you both for giving :D

  17. wonderful interview! Love getting to know the team members better:0

  18. So good to get to know more about one another! Make this big vast space that much more friendly.

  19. Awesome interview with my favorite quilter on Etsy. I would like to have one of your green quilts as well....except in earth tones! I think I should be saving up my Paypal pennies, or perhaps Santa would put one under my tree...!
    Thanks Mollie for the insightful's so great to get to know people from the Team through your thoughtful and humorous interviews.

  20. I love that we are doing this!!!!!!!!!! - i hear you have a FANTASTIC interview for this week coming up.......:D
    Bre and i go way back to when she was friends with Kelly and Jenn, and i tried to "butt" into all their inside jokes....... She's a wonderful girl and talented artist! Hey Bre, love your "space" Mine is so cluttered that it isn't even funny! thanks mollie ann! laura xxoo