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Featured Artist – Melissa de la Fuente of Acts of Kindness

Every time I contact a fellow artist with the question "would you like to participate on the Featured Artist series of my blog?" I get a bit anxious to find out if they're up for it. All of them agree, so I don't even know why I have that feeling...But anyhow!

This next artist is one of my favorite people in the bloggostphere and I am so happy I came across her blog. We connected right away like we had known each other for a long long time. That's how I feel when I email back and forth with sweet Melissa, of Acts of Kindness. She creates the most adorable jewerly pieces of which I have a couple of favorites. Her blog, Melissa Loves, is an eye candy and the best source not only for inspiration but for meeting new artists as well. I am adicted to her "tea + talk" series. She has a way with people, which I l.o.v.e!!! But enough about what I think! Take a seat and let's begin! You'll love her!

1. Can you tell us a bit about yourself?

Hi! Well, let's see....My name is Melissa and I am married to my best friend, Joel.

We have two little girls that I feel incredibly honored and awed to be raising (man, I hope I do right by them!) :)

We live in New Jersey after living in NYC for 14 years. I am originally from southern Florida(way down near the Everglades and the Florida Keys) I actually went to college to be an actor but, once my first daughter was born....I stayed home. Now, I just do a little voice over work on the side. I love and have always loved: dogs, the ocean, climbing trees & jewelry! :)

I guess now that I am a "grown up" I could add tea, going to the movies, great belly laughs with friends, and just enjoying my family to that list.

2. How are you able to do what you love while being a mother to young children?

Well, let me start off by saying that it is so much easier when you have your hubby or partner around to help you out. I couldn't do it so easily without Joel. My friends whose husbands have 9 to 5 jobs or are single parents have it WAY harder for sure.

3. Do you have a studio/work schedule? What works for you?

My desk is RIGHT in the middle of all the action which makes it easier and(sometimes) more frustrating! :) I do try to only work in the morning while they are both at school( my littlest one is only there 3 days a week from 9 to 12) and then whatever I don't get done, I try to finish up before dinner or after they go to bed. It doesn't always work like that however :)

~ above my desk (girl print by, little log from my friend Nancy's shop, drawing by my hubby, little cat by www.

~ In this secretary is where I keep all of my jewelry supplies and packaging.....and a little rotating tribute above of some of the artists I love

~Top shelf: elephant print( girl print(

~second shelf: mushroom(wwwTamar,Heather Smith Jones piece(behind the little kitty cat pitcher), little owl(, Bubbo print(

~third shelf: deer print( tiny mushroom tag(, flower photograph ( from

~Quote I adore from sweet , little bouse from my friend Marichelle (

4. When did you start doing what you do and when did you come about realizing that this is "it"?

This is such an interesting question for me because even though I have loved jewelry my whole life I never really considered that I would be doing this at any point. I thought I would always work as an actor but, when I started getting frustrated at some of the prices of jewelry I saw and loved out there in the mainstream....I thought "I wonder if I could design my own?" And that is really where it began for me, I just took a leap of faith. Oh, and it was only a little over a year ago.....

Andrea Ring, the sweetest most elegant and timeless ring ever. Soon to be mine:)Hope necklace. Two words: love, love.

5. What inspires you?

Oh , wow. What doesn't? A lot of things inspire me, other people, acts of kindness, meaningful and heartfelt stories or phrases. Artists I see on etsy every day. Nature.....(particularly branches and twigs, birds, blossoms, mushrooms, water, ....) Textures like linen and velvet, colors like yellow, green, pink and blue.....oh, and grey! I am still obsessed with grey. I would love to start working color into my designs but, I haven't quite figured out my way with that yet!

6. How do you separate working on your little business from spending time with the family? Any tips you would like to share with us?

I am extremely conscious of not spending all my time on the computer and constantly trying to make a better schedule that works for me and for my family. Recently, I have come up with...."ok, Melis...just get your work done now and then you can goof around on the computer later when they are asleep or at school." So, it isn't much but, it has made me stick to the point a little better and save all the fun stuff for later! :)

7.What's your idea of a perfect day?

Hmm....I would say it would go like this....I wake up late to find my girls asleep, snuggling with me and we are perfectly comfortable. Joel wakes us with breakfast he has made...and then I get to sleep a tiny bit more and then we all gather with some of our best friends and their kids and romp and play in the park and have a picnic. Then later, when everyone is tired, the kids all get to flop and relax at home with a babysitter while all the grownups go out to a wonderful dinner filled with lots and lots of laughter! We come home, the girls are so happy to see us and then we tuck them in for bed, give them kisses, tell them we love them more than anything in this whole world and everyone sleeps over! :)

8. What's your favorite get away location?

You know, growing up my folks had(and still have) a small house on the beach in the keys.....there, on that beach, under some shade, with an awesome book, and a tall glass of something cool to drink.....that was always one of my favorite places to be or to dream about. It still is but, I would have to add....being in the south of France with Joel. We went there on our honeymoon and I would love to go back someday and just ramble about.

9. Do you keep/have a wish list? What's on top of the list, right now?

Do I have a wish list?! Do I have a wish list!?! Do I ever! :)

There are so many things I fall in love with on a daily basis and I often think my wish list is my way of storing it away so I don't feel the need to buy it(SOMEtimes) I am really trying to not spend much money these days(like a lot of us) and so my list grows and grows! Here are a few that are on my mind all the time lately....

~anything from Liane's shop Enhabiten

~ this bracelet

~ this necklace

~this mobile

~these bowls

~ this teapot

and I am obsessed with finding the perfect bag with pockets on the front.....don't ask me why. :)

10. Four most favorite blogs? is tempting to say I can't narrow it down to just 4(which is true) but, I am going to try. Creature comforts, Heart Handmade, Bliss, What possessed me, hey susy!, decor8, S.Hoptalk, Mackin Ink (even though it isn't up anymore) design for mankind, simplesong, perfectbound, simple lovely, cup of jo, lou lou & oscar and you lovely Vana~ ! oops! Was that more than 4 ? (heh heh)

11. What's the one thing you can't live without?

Oh, easy....Joel, Elena and Tallulah.

12. What makes Melissa smile?

My girls having fun, Joel doing something silly to make me laugh, everytime someone says something nice about my jewelry or my blog( it really makes my day, every time), tea and a chat with a good friend, Joel saying " our babysitter is coming to watch the girls and we are going out to dinner and a movie!", a beautiful spring day, when my girls are being really loving to each other, a great sense of humor, dogs, my friends, a really thoughtful gesture and everytime I come across some new and wonderful artist on Etsy or elsewhere.

Thank you dear Melissa for taking a moment to share the artist, the mother and wife with us. You truly are a beautiful person!

Check out Melissa's Etsy shop here and her lovely blog here.

The post Featured Artist – Melissa de la Fuente of Acts of Kindness appeared first on Le Papier Blog.