Business: Aly & Noe
Info: Instagram @christiedunlop
How did you come to start your business of dreamcatchers and macrame?
So the fluffy reason: My sister-in-law and I were shopping in downtown Santa Barbara during Christmas and there was a local artisans pop-up shop. In the window was an incredible dreamcatcher that was full of character. We both exclaimed “we could totally make that!” which is a long-time running joke between us. We adore figuring out how to make things, and draw inspiration every time we go out together. So we bought supplies to make our own dreamcatchers. The deeper reason: I started making dreamcatchers shortly after having my daughter. She is the sweetest gift, but the pregnancy was very challenging. After she was born I was fortunate not to be hit with post-pardom depression, but I became somewhat manic. As hard as I tried, I couldn’t wind down at any point in the day, least of all at night. I threw myself into weaving and knotting. I found this to be a relaxing outlet that focused my never ending need to be “productive”. I was mama and part-time nurse, and to wind down my day I would spend my evenings wrapping and weaving and creating. It was my favorite therapy.
What do you love most about it?
Aside from the obvious therapeutic results, it is never ending in its options! No piece is the same and I have no desire to replicate them. Each one takes on its own character and reflects a different style and mood. I prefer creating wherever my inspiration takes me, but I also enjoy getting custom order requests because it allows me to be open to other’s visions and collaborate my style with theirs. It’s a great challenge.
Are there other areas of your life where you exercise creativity?
I truly don’t want this to sound self-indulgent, but I feel that nearly my entire life is creative. I can’t help but recognize that creativity oozes in every area where I am truly loving and caring for others. My career as a nurse uses creativity. Every patient I care for needs science and medicine to cure them, but there is the tangible art of nursing that requires improvising, multi-tasking, and bluntly put, a fair amount of acting to be therapeutic and effective in helping them and their families. And can I get a shout-out from other parents? I mean, hiding spinach in a smoothie for you kid is expressing creativity! Finding a way to entertain my kids in those witching hours of 4-6pm before Daddy gets home is darn near magic in the games we find to play! Creativity is such a gift and I encourage everyone to explore what sets their hearts on fire, no matter what outlet that looks like for them.