Friday, September 10, 2010


An interview with Nancy Sheehan of
the “Absolutely Dottie" Etsy Shop
by Marian Cates

Nancy, her husband and their three children live in the Philadelphia metro area. Nancy is devoted to her shop. And her husband is so supportive of her work that he gave up his home-office space so that she’d have a better space for her craft work. Nancy recently made the transition from holding a day job to full-time crafting.

MC: When did you begin crafting?

Nancy: My love of crafts goes back to my childhood. My mother studied fashion design. When I was a child, she created various crafts. One that stands out to me is her decoupaged pocketbooks that she sold on consignment. She also decoupaged my lunchboxes. I still have one of those lunchboxes -- a treasure from my childhood.

I can’t help but think that that’s when my love of paper was born. One of my earliest memories is using construction paper for book reports in grade school.

MC: Why did you choose to focus on paper tags?

Nancy: There’s just something about paper tags that really appeals to me. A shipping tag is a great grade of card stock. You can “age” one using coffee or tea and a warm oven. And you can modify the texture using sandpaper.

I love to see what new uses I can put these tags to. So far, the list includes cupcake toppers, gift tags, place cards, hand-stitched tags, and “distressed” tags. A tag can be turned into a spooky mummy or a gingerbread person that sits on top of a cupcake. They are just the right size for cupcake toppers. (see above)



MC: How did you come up with the shop name, “Absolutely Dottie”?

Nancy: I have my mother-in-law to thank for that. When I first started dating my husband, his mother introduced me to the world of ceramics. She’s a potter and used to have a ceramic studio. She let me embellish her ceramics with dots.

I started putting dots on everything! That’s where the name “Absolutely Dottie” came from. I chose a Raggedy Ann doll for my logo. When shop visitors and customers drop me notes, they call me Dottie. I love that!

Bulldog by Marian Cates

Bulldog by Marian Cates
Click for prints, canvases & various products

Burrowing Owl by Marian Cates

Burrowing Owl by Marian Cates
Click for prints and canvases & products

Jack Sprat Mother Goose Rhyme by Marian Cates, from a vintage illustration

Jack Sprat Mother Goose Rhyme by Marian Cates, from a vintage illustration
Click for prints, canvases & products

Robin Hood by Marian Cates, from a vintage illustration