Introducing Sarah Tan!
This month we caught up with Melbourne designer and henna extraordinaire, Sarah Tan! Illustration, design, art and henna are more than passions for this delightful artist; who takes inspiration from Malaysian architects, is propelled by positivity and making an impact in her community.
Can you tell us a little bit about who you are and what you do?
I’m a communication design student at RMIT University and I’m from Malaysia. Design has always been my passion and my creative outlet, I mostly do graphic design, illustration and henna.
Why do you do what you do?
It all started when I needed to fundraise some money for some charity organisations. I was doing a lot of designing and drawing then and the only way I could think of to raise money was to sell my artwork. I did what I could to the best of my ability and was surprised when I could contribute to the society with my talent!
Ever since then, I’ve been designing more products and finding new crafts. I love what I do because it is very hands-on and not only do I get to improve my design skills, I get first-hand experience in running my own business. My aim is to spread positivity through my designs and I love it when people pick my stuff up and have a good laugh on a lame pun or a cute drawing. Having to juggle between studies and my little enterprise is tough but I believe that if you love to do something, you’ll find time for it!
Who are some other artists, crafters, creatives that you love? And why?
I admire Red Hong Yi’s who is a architectural designer from Malaysia. I love her work because she uses ordinary items to create stunning artworks. I am always amazed of how she comes up of these creative ideas: making a portrait of Jackie Chan from chopsticks, using shadows to create Star Wars characters and much more! Following creatives on Instagram inspires me too, I love seeing the stuff they come with and the crafting method they use. Seeking inspiration from other creatives definitely help in broadening my perspective and creativity.
What excites you?
Learning a new skill excites me a lot, I love going to a craft store to get new materials to learn or signing up for a workshop. I also get excited when my designs or crafts comes out the way I envisioned, that satisfaction is amazing!
We think of a rummage stall as a mini shopfront, how do you make your rummage stall your own?
Injecting your own personality and style into your rummage stall is definitely a must! It is good to relate the appearance of your stall with your products too, for example most of my products are illustrated, so I have big illustrated letters to give customers a general idea of what I’m selling. The overall look of your own stall is important as it sets a first impression and it will attract or repel customers to your stall.
Can you offer any tips on setting up a rummage stall?
The preparation to set up a rummage stall can be a little daunting! It is good to keep everything organised; your products, decor, price tags, name cards etc. Keep lists so you won’t forget anything! On the day itself, just be friendly, be yourself and have fun. Bringing along a portable stool is definitely useful!
What is the next step for you? What does the future hold?
The next step for me is to develop my website and have my products available for sale online. I’m also currently working on producing a larger variety of products and designing more of them. I am just experimenting with different crafts and styles to discover more alternatives and methods for now. I’m hoping to participate in many more markets to gain more experience and do market testing. I’m really excited about the future!
What’s your favourite place or thing to do in your city?
I love hunting for new places to eat especially brunch or coffee places in the city! I live in the city so it is good to travel out to the suburbs and explore once in awhile. I also love chilling in the park or the beach, having a picnic or doodling.
What do you like about attending Suitcase Rummage?
I like how everyone is looking out for each other and they’re super friendly. I also like how the cost to have a stall is really affordable. Because of this, it gives creatives a good opportunity to get their work out there to the public and step out of their comfort zone.
Where we can we find and follow you?
You can find me in the links below!
Facebook page: https://www.facebook.com/HappyEverAlter/
Etsy Store: https://www.etsy.com/au/shop/HappyEverAlter
(Still under construction!) Website: http://www.happyeveralter.com/