Clinton and I are thrilled to have a shiny new website! After selling on another (very crowded) platform for almost 3 years, we took the leap and started our own website to include a blog and a newsletter so we could have control over how we connect with our customers as well as allow them to get to know the people and the story behind the logo.
So to begin at the beginning: Array and Display got it's start under the branch of an old Oak tree in our backyard in Fort Worth, TX in July, 2014. I was a jewelry designer at the time (still am, but no time currently) and I needed a few displays for a show, but I couldn't find any that weren't cheap looking. So I asked Clinton if maybe he could make a couple of stands, and, being the always eager to please darling that he is, he obliged. On a whim, I thought I would try listing them on Etsy just to see what would happen. We were hoping for an additional $200 per month to help us make ends meet. What happened was all the stands sold the next day to the tune of $103. We were beyond giddy. We made more displays. The next week we received an order for over $500 in displays. I nearly fainted! We had apparently tapped a niche without having done any research on our product. And that's how it started.
Clinton worked on a sawhorse under the shade of the old oak tree (see that post here) and orders came rolling in from all over the world faster than we could make them. We quit our jobs, moved to the country and spend our days making jewelry displays (among other things) that help jewelry designers show their creations in the best possible light. If only I had time to be a jewelry designer again so I could use my own displays! Irony. Here is part of a collection I created for a runway fashion show in Dallas. I have a thing for statement jewelry, to say the least.
We have (virtually) met so many lovely people through our small business that we feel like we have a huge extended family stretching around the world. They send us photos of our product babies and ask for updates on the remodel of our 1910 Texas farmhouse (we're doing it OURSELVES) - the farmhouse we bought in 2015 so we could have room to expand our business and live simpler lives way out in the country.
It sounds daring and romantic to give up everything and start a simpler life, no? Ignorant is probably a better description for those 2 awestruck people who stumbled upon a crumbly old 2 story farmhouse in the middle of nowhere Texas (I miss you, Target and cell phone service!) on a farm that not even GPS can find. Have you ever had to give directions to a UPS driver? We do live in unmapped territory (which does have it's benefits).
We're 1 1/2 years into our new lives as nonconformists, artists, really bad homesteaders (I make my own laundry soap now!) and wannabe farmers. We started our first garden last summer and out of the 5 beds of numerous types of veggies, all we came away with was 2 gallons of jalapenos at the end of the season, all of which live in the freezer now because I can't think of anything else to make with jalapenos.
When we aren't in the workshop creating orders or in the studio painting/staining/shipping them, or tearing out flooring and walls in the farmhouse, I love to spend time in the kitchen. My newly remodeled DREAM kitchen, mind you, where I display my deft cooking skills I learned in culinary school but never used professionally. Here's a before and after of my kitchen. Mouth hanging open, right?
I thought I wanted to be a Chef but turns out I don't like being screamed at for being too sensitive to put a live lobster into boiling water. Now I practice my culinary skills on friends and family and I don't have to kill anything to do it. Nothing makes me happier than to whip up a fabulous meal while sipping a glass of Valpolicella and listening to Bob Marley (or Johnny Cash or Korn). Clinton is learning to cook and he's nearly better than I am now. We trade nights for cooking dinner and this is the type of meal he cooks on a weeknight. These are "Boudin Stuffed Pork Chops". On a Wednesday.
It seems every waking moment of our days is spent creating things, hence our logo "handcrafted products from a handcrafted life". And we couldn't be happier.
Hopefully, you know a bit more about us, the 2 tired but happy people who create the decor that make your home homier, the displays that showcase your born-from-your-soul handcrafted jewelry at shows and the photography backgrounds that help you shoot your beautiful recipes for your food blog.
We are thrilled and thankful to be living our dream life and we have our customers to thank for every goal we have achieved and surpassed. We wouldn't have been successful without you!