Makers Monday Feature: Tammy of Ashryla Boutique

Share with the creative community who you are.
Hi, I'm Tammy, designer and creator of Ashryla handbags, and owner of Ashryla Boutique.  I live in Martensville, SK with my husband and 2 children. 

What do you create? 
I make leather handbags and accessories. 

What materials do you use to create?
Leather is the main material that I work with,  but also fabric for linings, as well rivets and other small materials. 

Why do you create?
I think creating is just part of who I am.  I've been hooked since learning to use my mom's sewing machine when I was 8 or 9 years old, and making a jean skirt for my little sister. Throughout my whole life, I've always done creating in one form or another.  It's so satisfying to create something that started as just an idea in my head. Doing this as a business just came as a natural progression.   After being a stay-at-home mom for several years, this allowed me to phase back into "work" completely on my own terms, while doing something I love!

How has your art practice evolved since you first started? 
When I started out about 5 years ago, I was doing mostly one-of-a-kind custom orders, so my designs were based on each customer's specifications, and my wait list was quite lengthy. I no longer do custom design work, which enables me to have more bags available for immediate purchase.  I now have my own collection of designs, and think I've developed a more unified style that people can expect from my brand.  

How much time do you spend on your art practice? Is it enough? 
This is full time for me.  Once I get my kids off to school, I spend the day sewing and creating.  In the evenings,  I'm often replying to messages,  ordering supplies, tagging  items, etc.  Despite having lots of flexibility, I still struggle with finding the right work/life balance at times.

What is the most rewarding part of creating?
The interactions I've had with my customers, followers, and other makers has been extremely rewarding!  Choosing this path has also given me the flexibility I want as a mom, and that has been invaluable.  

How is your art unique from others?
My bags are all made from my own designs; not from patterns.   So you won't come across another maker that sells the same items.  Only limited quantities are made of each bag; each one having subtle differences, so each Ashryla bag is truly unique.  

Do you have a philosophy?
It's about the journey; not the destination.

What does creative joy mean to you?
Finding happiness through creativity. 

CREATE your own question & answer. What do you enjoy doing in your spare time? 
I love camping with my family; reading (I'm currently reading the Outlander series for the second time); and dancing (I go line dancing once a week with a great group of ladies).  Also, spending lots of time in my yard in the summer!

FIND Ashryla Boutique online:

You can also find my products on The Whimsy Store's website:  (just type "Ashryla" in the search bar)

Alchemy Clothing & Salon  (Saskatoon )
Hen  & Chick Studios  (Saskatoon)
The Whimsy Store (Saskatoon)
FG Market  (Osler)
Hawthorn & Wool  (Warman)
TR Petroleum  (Hague)
Lifewise  (St. Brieux)