Latino Crafts and DIY
Did you know the American crafts industry rings in $43 billion a year? And according to the 2016 census bureau there are 56 million Latinos in the United States. Yet when we visit the craft store, the department store, the bookstore, even craft/women/design websites, we don’t see our culture reflected. If we do, it’s very minimal and very stereotypical. And it often involves a lot of cultural appropriation.
My dad always taught me to take action instead of griping. So, in 2001 I launched Crafty Chica as a way to show Latinos (and lovers of Latino community) ways claim our identity in this market space and make our own decorations, jewelry, home decor, and so on.
FACTS ABOUT ME:
I’m an expert in making things and sharing them! I’m a hyper-creative lady who wanted Loteria flowerpots and when I couldn’t find them, I made them myself. And lots of other things. I sold them far and wide in large quantities. I decided to teach the world how to make them as well. Hello, a site for Latino crafts was born, and it’s been going strong for more than 16 years! The more you do something, the more your skills progress. So I will say I’m experienced!
I’m a third-generation Mexican-American chica. My great-grandparents on my mom’s side were from Sonora, MX, and on my dad’s, Zacatecas (they ran a ranch by day and a blanket business on the side!). My parents didn’t teach us kids Spanish because they thought it would help us assimilate easier. I didn’t even want to eat Mexican food back then. Stupida! It wasn’t until I met my (now) husband at age 21 that my life changed. He inspired me to explore and connect with my heritage and I’ve been making up for it ever since. I feel my story represents many other Mexican-American women who strive to connect with their culture. It’s not about how well or how long you’ve been speaking Spanish, it’s about what you are doing right now to move forward and set a good example to keep your culture alive. I speak a leetle Spanish now, I’m still working on it, but I don’t let that stop me from celebrating my culture!
This site is about sharing a creative lifestyle from my perspective. I make items to sell, and I make items to share tutorials for people to make for personal use. I hope it inspires people to get creative and celebrate their own culture, no matter what that is!
This is what I do for a living! Yes, sprinkling glitter and glue…and a lot more! I’m really proud to say I make a living doing what I love. I used to “wing it” back in the day, but now I know the power of planning, it’s made a huge difference. Don’t ever let anyone tell you that you can’t live off of your passion. Research, make an action plan, come up with multiple revenue streams, and follow through. This is no guarantee you’ll be shuffling Benjamins all day, they may be sacrifices, but it’s worth it if it means doing what you love!
I L-O-V-E social media! I’m a middle-child. I love to speak up and share ideas. I latched onto social media when it first started. It’s come such a long way. I try out all the new platforms to see if I click with them. I kind of have a different take than others in this space. I’m not consumed with numbers of followers, contests, awards, stats, or grades. I’m laser beamed focused on making cool stuff that I think people will like, and the numbers, and stats, etc. come organically. If people like my stuff, awesome, if not, no hurt feelings!
To me, making things is all about processing our feelings. Whether it’s happiness or stress, there’s no better way to get right with yourself than to sit down and make something. If you truly allow yourself to be in the moment while creating, you can shut off all the noise and distractions in your brain. Shut down the self-doubt and just have fun exploring your badass thought process!
I’m addicted to making things. To me, it’s healing. It’s about letting go of fear and embracing mistakes as part of the learning process. I often give stuff away I make, but I also sell items in my stores. But my FAVORITE aspect is sharing the inspiration. I call it “spreading the gospel of glitter.” That little bit of light can lead the way to something new and wonderful.
Will everything we make turn out fabulous? Not always. Like that saying – it’s not about the destination, it’s about the journey! My journey has been a loca one, but I would have it any other way! I never imagined I would be a full-time artist, writer, and digital entrepreneur, but here I am. You can always count on me to be here to offer you ideas and inspiration!
We are all a crafty chica in some way, no matter where you come from. And we know that being a crafty chica isn’t just about using our hands, it’s also very much a state of mind. The same way we think about different ways to use paint, we apply that creative perspective to life. Decision making. Style. Topics of conversation. That’s why you’ll find a variety of topics on this site. I share recipes, travel, movie reviews, shopping lists, my Phoenix faves, a little fashion, and beauty.
And of course, lots of arts and crafts!
Thanks so much for taking the time to read this!
Love & light,