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Professional Crafter Interview & GIVEAWAY! – Mark Montano

Reported By: Simone Collins
Today we have an interview with the author, artist, home decor master, and all around nice guy, Mark Montano. Mark has years of experience in the Craft Industry and hearing some of his insights and thoughts might help other crafters and artists in their own business.

Name: Mark Montano

Name: Mark Montano

Where can we find you online? My website, blog, Facebook Group, and Twitter

When did your business begin and why did you start it? I opened my first boutique in the East Village in 1989 where I made clothes and accessories for the hip and trendy east village New Yorkers and tons of Japanese tourists. In 2002 I published my first book called Super Suite: The Ultimate Bedroom Makeover Guide for Girls which had tons of craft projects that could help you transform your bedroom.

Tell us about your business today. Now it’s basically writing books and supporting it with TV appearances.

Describe your typical day. Up at 7 a.m. FB updates, answering e-mails from the left coast, making phone calls and then a work-out followed by creating for the rest of the day. Margaritas at 6 or 7 pm are a must.

What keeps you motivated? Something Nelson Madela said in a speech once. “It’s our responsibility to share our gifts with the world” “It doesn’t do the world any good if you keep them to yourself because it’s what will make the world a better place.”

What keeps you on track with your business? Tools? Tricks? Being creative every day and doing things that I personally enjoy. If I don’t enjoy it, then I don’t think others will.

Any websites or programs you use to help with your business? Which ones and how do they assist you. It’s an area where I lack for sure. Fortunately I have agents that keep me on track.

What is the biggest challenge in your business? Making sure I have enough time in the day to invent and be creative. I feel most days are filled with details that have nothing to do with creativity and it drives me batty.

Any advice you would give to someone just starting a crafty business? Yes, create because you love to create, not because you want to make money from it. Otherwise you’ll end up unhappy. The money will come later, I promise.

What do you love most about owning your own crafty business? Getting to be creative every day of my life.

Supplies to Make Chinese Mat Covered Table

Besides crafting, what do you love doing? I love to read, run, and floss my teeth with those floss picks. They rock my world.

Where does your inspiration come from? I am totally inspired by Picasso and Andy Warhol and by repetition.

Spring Flower Side Table from the Big Ass Book of Home Decor

Who are your favorite crafters? Margo Potter and Crafty Chica

Mark and Kathy Cano-Murillo, the Crafty Chica

Tell us about your crafting space. I love it. It’s a miniature version of my 1914 Craftsman house that I had built to look like it had been there for 100 years. It’s magical.

If you lose your crafty mojo, how do you find it again? I work through it. It’s been lost at times but I think we all need a break from creativity. It’s an energy that can be exhausted at times and we need to walk away from it.

What trends are you noticing in Craft? I try not to notice trends too much. I prefer to invent my own things. Recycling will always be popular with me and so will using things from the 99c store.

Room art tutorial featured on Mark’s blog

Where do you see your business in 10 years? My own brands of certain things that I personally use all of the time.

A big thanks to Mark for his candid answers and great info! Be sure to keep up to date with all of Mark’s great adventures on his website and Facebook.

Mark has generously agreed to give away a copy of his book, The Big-Ass Book of Home Decor, to one lucky reader and it is so easy to enter to win. To enter please answer any of the following questions below in the Comments section of this article. One entry per person, please.

Do you own any of Mark’s books yet? Which ones? What home decor project would you like to start or are you working on?

Contest ends Sunday, May 29th at 6pm CST.

Bonus Giveaway!
Visit us on our Facebook page for another chance to win another Mark Montano book. So hop on over to Facebook for all the details and join the fun!

Click on the link at the top of the page to visit Craft Critique for comments, giveaways and more!