I am a big fan of Jezebel, the wonderfully charming & romantic children’s book-19th century-Great Gatsby-black & white film-inspired line of silhouette and epigraph stationery. I know I left some adjectives out of that description, but Jezebel is hard to sum up….it’s simple, yet so complicated at the same time.
Since I am such a big fan, I’m totally excited to be able to share my interview with Leigh Batnick, the creative force behind Jezebel, with you today for Indie Artist Fixx. If you are already a fan yourself, this will be a real treat for you. If you haven’t yet heard of Jezebel, make sure to visit ilovejezebel.com and I guarantee you soon will be a fan.
1. What’s the name of your business and what do create and sell?
Jezebel is correspondence for the vagabond heart. The marriage of 19th century silhouettes and 21st century epigraphs allow a peek into a diorama world. The line started with stationery and now includes tee shirts, onesies, tote bags, and prints, and a brand new capsule collection of fine jewelry, Vagabond Picnic by Jezebel.
2. Tell us how you got started with your indie business.
I was the sidelines buyer at a venerable indie business, Politics and Prose. I was surrounded by stories and decided that Jezebel was the way to tell the tale of a wood between the worlds, an imaginary love-space where forgotten shadow-shaped souvenirs of the past wipe the sleep
from their kohl-rimmed eyes.
3. What are your inspirations in your art and in life?
The inspiration for Jezebel ranges to include books from my childhood, my father’s record collection, antique family photos, black and white foreign films and dreams of Egypt, Morocco and India.
4. Are there any pearls of wisdom you’d like to share with newbie indie business owners?
Maintain your books and keep track of all things financial impeccably from day one.
5. What three things can’t you live without?
Books, two-legged loved ones, four-legged loved ones.
6. What’s the best thing about what you do? And the worst?
The best thing is convincing myself that drinking cardamom coffee and shopping the $1 carts at my favorite used bookstore is work. The worst thing is convincing myself that drinking cardamom coffee and shopping the $1 carts at my favorite used bookstore is work.
7. What blogs and mags do you read and what shops do you shop at?
Blog wise, I’m a fan of the Bookslut Blog, Hollister Hovey, Vintage Kids’ Books My Kid Loves (found through HH), The Moldy Doily, and A Cup of Jo. As for magazines, I love Lula, Vanity Fair, and Domino. I’m itching for a subscription to the New York Review of Books. I shop magpie style at junktiques wherever I can find them. I’m a browser more than a shopper.
8. Were you an artsy craftsy kid? If so, what kinds of things did you do?
I was a reader.
9. Are you a dog person or a cat person?
Well, this is a felicitous question indeed! While I am most decidedly a cat person, I did just get a tiny little puppy called Teepee! She is a spectacle and is slowly working on winning over Coral the cat.
10. What are you reading, watching and listening to?
I just finished Errol Flynn’s autobiography, My Wicked, Wicked Ways. I’ve been watching Mike Wallace interviews from the 50s online, particularly the one with Jean Seberg, and at this very moment I’m listening to Miles Davis and Pink Floyd on my new speakers!
11. What’s one thing you’ve learned as an adult that you wish you knew when you were a kid?
Thunder and lighting are friends, not foes.
12. What’s new for 2008? Any new plans or products that you want to share?
My fingers are tingling with the delicious weight of Jezebel’s new jewels. I’ve developed a thirst for gold lately and have decided to pursue it in the form of tiny little rose gold ants festooned on yellow gold chains and bands.