We had the good fortune of connecting with Adeline Muff and we’ve shared our conversation below.
Hi Adeline, we’d love to hear more about how you thought about starting your own business?
At first, starting my own business was just for fun. I started out by making Christmas ornaments for my friends and family. Eventually, friends started telling their friends and I started making ornaments for people I didn’t even know. I got all of my orders through social media. Eventually, people started to refer to me as a “business” and I never really thought of it like that until other people started calling it that. After the Christmas season, people wanted more of my art and those small ornaments I made translated into bigger canvases. That’s when I truly decided that I can make my art into a business.
Let’s talk shop? Tell us more about your career, what can you share with our community?
I am an artist who works mostly with acrylic paint and digit art. I specialize in calligraphy and portraits of houses, people, and pets. I started calligraphy when I got engaged. I wanted to do all of the signage myself for my wedding so I learned calligraphy on YouTube and I have been learning more ever since. All of my portraits have been customized, so when I started participating in markets and craft shows, I had to find ways to share more of my art, so I started sharing crafts at these markets. I sell hand-painted flower pots, mugs, and cups that I’ve designed myself, t-shirts, hoodies, and stickers. Although I love doing custom work, I have found so much joy in designing my own goods and crafts.
I have always considered myself as a creative. However, most of my creativity was channeled through music. Music was my first love. I sing, play the piano, ukulele, and guitar, and grew up in a musically gifted family. I would draw and paint in the privacy of my room but I never shared it like I did my music. Eventually, I stirred up the courage to make art on Instagram and share it with others. At first, it was just for fun, but more people asked if they could buy the things I created so that’s when I really hit the ground running with my art. I think what sets me apart is that I am fairly new to art and I haven’t really found my style yet. I work mostly with acrylic paint and digital art for people, but I have found that I really love to work with letters and florals. It’s cool that my audience can see me actively grow in how I discover myself as an artist. I am also really open to painting on anything! I have painted on canvas, flower pots, denim, and shoes. I find that a lot of seasoned artists can be more choosey when it comes to what they paint on. I see it as a fun and new challenge. I am really open to a lot of different ideas and I’m not scared to try new things when it comes to art!
One piece I am most proud of is a mural I did for a local market here in Lexington called the Lexington Mercantile Co. I had full creative freedom so of course, I had to include some lettering and florals. It was a huge 10×10 canvas. I don’t have a studio or a huge place to work, so I literally had to rearrange my whole kitchen to finish. I painted it while working a full-time job. I would leave for work at 7 am and come back around 4 pm and would go straight to work. I stayed up all night to paint and only got about an hour or two of sleep. I got it done over the course of 3 days. I had so much fun doing it and it has made me want to do more murals! The idea of having my art somewhere permanent would be a dream.
I would say starting my business has been fun, but all hustles have their challenges. The biggest challenge for me is time. I am a full-time student so I will be graduating in Spring 2022 with a BS in Elementary Education. With working, going to school, and running my own business, time has always been something I have had to find more of. I have learned that you make time for the things you love. Running this business can be very exhausting, but at the end of the day, I love it and always try to find time for it. Another challenge has been my own thoughts. I had a lot of doubts about starting up my business. I didn’t think I was good enough and I told myself that everyone else was so much better than me. These are still thoughts that I wrestle with, but I realized that the difference between the people I saw on social media that I was comparing myself to was that they were living out their dream and hustling. They went for it. The biggest lesson I have learned is to just go for it. Don’t let your thoughts and fears deter you from trying new things. Learn as you go and don’t be afraid to make mistakes. You may even embarrass yourself, but part of being successful is swallowing your pride and understanding that you will never have it all figured out. I know that I am constantly learning new things about myself and my business and I’m okay with not knowing everything, but I have only had my business for a year now and I have learned so much on this journey.
Any places to eat or things to do that you can share with our readers? If they have a friend visiting town, what are some spots they could take them to?
If my best friend was visiting Lexington, first I would take them to North Lime Coffee and Donuts. After, I would definitely take them on a tour to see all of the murals in Lexington. There have been so many talented artists that have painted murals all around the downtown area and they are beautifully done. I would also take them to Lexington Distillery District. There are so many local businesses there including Brevede Coffee, Goodfellas Pizza, Crank and Boom Ice Cream, Middle Fork, and many different breweries and bars. If this friend were more outdoorsy, I would take them to Raven’s Run for a hike. Raven’s Run is a hiking trail that is super accessible in Lexington and truly captures the beauty of Kentucky, If hiking wasn’t their thing but they still wanted to experience the outdoors, I would take them to Kentucky Native Cafe. Kentucky Native Cafe is an oasis in downtown Lexington. It is one of my favorite places to go to in Lex. Before walking in, it just looks like a fenced-in area. Once you walk in, it feels magical. You can walk around with a glass of wine and be surrounded by lush foliage. They are a part of Michler’s Florists so you can even buy plants while you are there!
Shoutout is all about shouting out others who you feel deserve additional recognition and exposure. Who would you like to shoutout?
First, I would say that my faith in Jesus Christ is really the center of my whole business! In 2 Corinthians 4:7 it says, “We have this treasure in jars of clay to show that this all-surpassing power is from God and not from us”. Potters would shape and mold clay to make something beautiful and functional. God is the Heavenly Potter that shapes and molds us into a purpose that he desires. He has made us worthy not because of ourselves, but who He has called us to be. Similarly, the things I make are for the glory of God and for the happiness of others. Because of this, it is not my talents that make them worthy, but the purpose in which it was created.
Second, my husband has been my biggest supporter from the beginning. I don’t think I would have had the confidence and drive to start Made Worthy if it weren’t for him. He is always cheering me on and affirming my talents.
Finally, my small business community in Lexington, Kentucky! Lexington has been overwhelmingly kind and supportive of my small business. Most of my business is done through local markets and craft fairs. I am constantly meeting new small business owners and it never feels like a competition. We all help each other out and even share ideas. Other businesses buy my goods, like, comment, and share my stuff on their social media, and collaborate with me. It truly feels like a community,
Other: Email: email@example.com
Headshot photo: Scarlett Michele Bigam @scarlettmichelephoto