We had the good fortune of connecting with Alexandra Karpova and we’ve shared our conversation below.
Hi Alexandra, can you share a quote or affirmation with us?
Dreams don’t work unless you Do. While growing in Kazakhstan, my home country, my mother used to say it many times. Then I learnt it was a quote from John Maxwell, an American author and pastor focused primarily on Leadership. This became my favorite quote, my motto painted on wooden board and hang in my studio as a daily reminder. Nothing will happen unless you choose what you want to do in life. But for me that was just half of it. We need to add that dreams don’t come true by wishing on them. There is always a lot of hard work and no magic involved. Dreams, thoughts and vision are simply not enough to create something. Only through assiduous effort (tough grind, effort, production) and action of an idea will form into existence. When you start working on your dreams, you’ll realize that they are slowly becoming part of your reality. So I keep working on those dreams no matter how many obstacles you I have to encounter.
Can you open up a bit about your work and career? We’re big fans and we’d love for our community to learn more about your work.
In my work I form soft bricks of polymer clay into looks-like-real food miniature and kawaii jewelry, committing my attention to every detail, every single element of each and every one of my creations. Creating food miniature seems effortless but it isn’t that easy at all. Before I get pleased with my work, I will make dozens of trials to make sure I’m happy with the final design, color and texture. I tend to work my items down to the smallest detail but at some points I like imperfections like a fingerprint, which make handmade items more unique. I like to use just good materials, high quality non-toxic clay that I can test myself around the durability of pieces and how easy care is required after purchase. My creations will stay by your side for many years! I love incorporating different materials into polymer clay like sand, wire, beads, resin and many others if they come to my sight. Facing customers at craft fairs and talking to them through my shop, came upon a constant question if the materials I use are comfortable for people with metal allergies. So, I have integrated to variety of my products hypoallergenic nylon stud earrings and also added an option of earrings for non-pierced ears. I try to make every purchase for my clients be hassle free so I offer free gift boxes for all my creations and also free shipping. I’m proud of having the courage to open my Etsy shop “MyAKAccessories”. As for some people it may be natural, easy but it wasn’t for me, because I’m my own worst critic and constantly questioning myself. I had a fear that people will not like my work neither would make any purchase. And after few years of hard work and dedication I made to 10% of most successful Etsy shops and 5 products from my Seasonal collection become Bestsellers. However, having no idea where the shop would lead me, I’ve had so many wonderful opportunities and collaborations with other artists from different medias. I’ve never thought of myself as a designer or artist before, but I think I’ve developed my own unique style over the years.
If you had a friend visiting you, what are some of the local spots you’d want to take them around to?
We love having family and friends from out-of-town and showing them the city we live and love – Houston. There is so much to see! From the must see, I have 3 favorites: The Science Museum, the Zoo and of course, the first mind-blowing stop will always going to be NASA. It is a unique experience, like nowhere in the world. You can see original space rockets from inside and out or try rocket launch simulator ride, many interactive activities for any age. After indoor fun we like to spend time at their park like at Discovery green park. Beautiful alleys with old oaks lowering their brunches, groomed fields, pleasant ponds – it’s a place to relax and enjoy an outdoor movie or a performance. After park is easy to get to Minute Maid stadium to watch our home town team Astros, having a cold bear and Irish nachos from Home Streets restaurant. If there is a desire to hit the shop, Houston is an awesome place too, good quality and very competitive prices. Many malls, from designers to outlet to fit any preference. For example, going to The Galleria Mall and then eat near by at a New York Jewish style deli, where they serve amazing crunchy pickles and mind-blowing open sandwiches (why open?, because they are so big that is impossible to close them!). Everything is bigger in Texas!!! And if we are talking about food then comes a very complicated desicion. H-town is know for it’s cultural diversity with options of each culture’s most authentic eats. From South African bobotie at Peli Peli to Columbian bandeja paisa at Mi Pueblito, Real french bagets and desserts at family-owned cafe Delice De Maurice to Mexican cuisine at Las Alamedas where you will get sizzling fajitas and tacos al carbon. And don’t forget strong and delicious margarita frozen or on rocks! Many places to see and visit in Houston, so have in mind, one week isn’t going to be enough!
Who else deserves some credit and recognition?
My dedicated shoutout definitely will be to my husband. I’m eternally grateful to this incredible man who supports every dream I have had no matter how big or small. Especially, when I am having doubts in myself and what I can do, he is always there to reassure me that I can do it! I’m thankful for his patience, support, encouragement and always being there for me, for his willingness to help. How many times when I stumbled into a problem, he would sit with me to brainstorm ways to overcome obstacles or will think with me on how to grow my business. My husband always there to remind me all the things I have had accomplished and how far I can go and how much more I can do.
All photographs belong to MyAKAccessories.