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Meet Creature Comforts

Hello everyone! If you didn’t already catch this bit of news in my previous post, I’m officially back to blogging on a daily basis now. I’d like to thank each of my guest bloggers who filled in while I was taking some time off. I’ve been in Germany for 3 weeks and I’ve accomplished so much already that I cannot wait to see what happens between now and the time I leave in December.

Our vacation apartment is coming along very well… I’m not that patient when it comes to waiting for items I order to arrive though — But I’m trying to learn patience, chill a little, and enjoy the time I have here in a new culture. The weather has been very kind to us, Spring-like on some days, Autumn temps other days… It’s lovely really. There is so much to tell you!

But enough about me… This space is dedicated to my lovely Santa Margarita, California-based friend Ez (pronounced Ee-zee). I shall continue talking to you about what I’m up to here in Germany in later posts. Ez is the all star blogger behind Creature Comforts and e-shop owner of Wren & Chickadee. So without further ado, I’d like for you to sit in on our chat today so perhaps you can be inspired by this lovely, warm soul on the web with hopes that you’ll feel the same fondness for her that I do.

“The Taste of Summer” by Ez available on Etsy.

A little background, Ez is 29 years old, has a beautiful daughter, and is a single mother working hard to cover all the bases as a mum and as a creative type looking for fulfill her needs while earning an income that will support her and her daughter comfortably. So let’s get started and meet this lovely lady, shall we?

Holly: What do you like to do there (your city) to recharge yourself?

Ez: I live in a very tiny town (barely over 1000 people), with a post office, greasy spoon restaurant, gas station, feed supply, liquor store, and mercantile (it’s actually called that). Let’s just say that it is not the most conducive location to “recharge.” The one saving grace is that we are surrounded by a lot of nature which my daughter and I take walks in as frequently as possible. We also make a lot of trips to San Luis Obispo, which is an absolutely gorgeous town only a few miles from our home.

Holly: Can you define your personal style?

Ez: My personal taste and my actual style are two completely separate things. :) Taste wise I gravitate towards clothes with a distinctive European feeling or things that have a modern bohemian look. In actuality, I tend to wear straight legged jeans or lightweight pants, tank tops or t-shirts, and a sweatshirt with unique detailing (such as those by Mike & Chris), and flats. I’m pretty low maintenance really.

Ez is inspired by Etsy stores like the new A View To by i. Klee design.

Holly: Why did you become a blogger?

Ez: Several years ago I was going through a really dark time in my life. I discovered blogging quite by accident, and found that through the process of seeking out beauty and inspiration, I was finally able to see it again. Blogging and the blog community has been very good to me, and I feel so lucky for that!

Holly: What are some of the challenges of writing each day?

Ez: Well, the number one challenge is keeping a fresh and original perspective. There are so many blogs now, and so many talented people, it is hard sometimes to feel that you have a unique place in the blogging community… I just keep plugging along and hope that the things that inspire me make my readers happy too.

Holly: What do you hope to accomplish through blogging?

Ez: My number one hope is that my readers and visitors will come away from Creature Comforts feeling inspired. I don’t expect that my taste will be the same as everyone else’s, but I hope that I can encourage those who stop by to find the bits of beauty in their daily lives and live each day for themselves. If I make just one person’s day brighter or happier by blogging, then I have succeeded.

Holly: I feel the same Ez. I think all bloggers should pause for a moment (if you are a blogger reading this) and ask yourself the same question. What do you hope to accomplish through blogging? It’s a good question that I think we sometimes need to ask ourselves to avoid losing our focus and/or zeal for what we’re doing. Can you please tell us a little about your background and how do you think this lead to blogging?

Ez: I have always been interested in all things design, style, and art related. I’ve dabbled in many different artistic fields, and went to school for fashion design, but I think that it is my natural inability to stick to one thing forever that has helped me most of all (my Mom would roll her eyes here). Without this I could never keep coming back to Creature Comforts every day and continue to find things that inspire me. My taste is forever changing/evolving, and I think blogging is a fantastic way to foster a sense of wonder at all the world has to offer.

The rich colors shown in the portfolio of Polly Wreford represented by Sarah Kaye are a few of Ez’s favorite things right now.

Holly: In addition to writing, you do beautiful photo layouts and create handmade things for your etsy store. How did you learn all of these wonderful talents?

Ez: Thank you. I certainly can’t take credit for everything that I do. I think I was born to be artistic and to create things, and I love to learn and challenge myself… So much of what I currently know came from that. For example, I began to assemble photo layouts on my blog using Photoshop because I wanted to learn how to use the software. I still have so much to learn, but the process it a lot of fun. People are often shocked when I describe myself as technically inept, but techie things do not come naturally to me. Everything I know (computer-wise) I have intentionally pushed myself to learn. If I can do it, anyone can!

Ez loves jewelry, “These necklaces by Stone & Honey are the most wonderful creations I have seen in a very long time… They might actually be my favorite jewelry of all time.”

Holly: What challenges do you face writing Creature Comforts when their are now so many other blogs covering similar topics?

Ez: I’ve often thought that blogland holds a lot of similarities to high school. There can be a lot of negativity and competitiveness that swirls around, but I personally try not to think of blogging as a competition. I think that is the most important thing. Secondly, I really just try to stay true to myself, the things that I love and that inspire me. I think that if I felt that I was up against all the other blogs, then I’d never have the motivation to continue blogging. I strongly believe that what you give in life, is what you receive, so I hope to be a valuable part of the community, but for all the right things (like warmth, generosity, and inspiration). I’m only human, so I have a whole mess of faults, but I am trying.

Holly: So true! There are blogs that are very supportive and welcoming, and sadly a few that tend to feel very much like a popularity club where only certain people are invited. Some blogs go as far to write negative things about fellow bloggers or worse, they blackball bloggers that they feel pose a threat to them somehow. It’s pretty ridiculous. Sadly, with most design, art, fashion, and craft blogs being authored by females you have to deal with this from time to time. We’re an emotional species and let’s face it, women do not always play well together. This has been the case throughout the course of history. It’s easier online with the anonymity of it all to be overly critical, judgmental, and treat others poorly and that’s a sad fact. But when I look at the large number of women online blogging and hear the relatively small number of negative experiences out there, I feel inspired that overall we’re doing a good job getting along and supporting one another. Sure some don’t support me and I’m sure some disregard your good work as well, but in the end those who are like-minded find one another, form special bonds, and carve out a special place for themselves on the web just like we have. Just as in real life, we click with certain people and not to others. We cannot be expected to act differently online, we gravitate those who ‘get’ us and shy away from those who do not. And for the bloggers who try to start negative rumors or promote negativity, I feel strongly that what comes around goes around anyway so just keep doing the right thing, don’t let the negative experiences override all of the positives, and move forward always. Speaking of moving forward…Now for the next question! How do you keep your content fresh and unique?

Ez: Most of my posts start at one inspiration point (perhaps I’m inspired by a color or a particular piece of jewelry) and end as something completely different. I try to let the process happen organically and not to force too much. The hardest thing is when I have those days where nothing is clicking. That’s when I take a little look through my flickr favorites and find some inspiration again. I love flickr!

Ez also loves a good DIY craft project, this one as showcased by Purl Bee caught her eye recently.

Holly: Any tips for new bloggers that have helped you as a writer?

Ez: Be passionate. Blog about something that truly matters to you. Believe in yourself and be an active and friendly member of the blogging community. Oh, and have patience! It might take a while before anyone knows you exist, but keep at it and never be afraid to ask for help when it is needed.

Holly: Give me 5 words that best describes your personality.

Ez: Shy, Artistic, Silly, Compassionate, and Emotional.

Holly: What keeps you energized and focused?

Ez: My readers inspire me so much. I wouldn’t be anywhere without them, and I feel so lucky to have such wonderful people caring about what I do. When I need a moment to regroup, I step away from my computer for a bit. Sometimes I go for a short walk and take photos, bake something tasty, or I rearrange a little corner of my house and give it a fresh look. Then I can come back with a fresh outlook and motivation to keep on keepin’ on.

Holly: How do you stay organized, do you have a specific system?

Ez: The desktop on my computer is crazy, but I try to organize it every day or else I’d never find anything. I also use Wishpot to keep most of my online files in one place. I don’t know how I lived before Wishpot! Afor the rest of my house… I’m definitely not a neat-nick! I need to see everything to feel inspired by my surroundings, so there are many little organized piles of various things from fabric, to current art projects, etc. around my home. Sometimes it gets out of hand, but I try to stay on top of it.

Holly: What is an average day like for you?
Ez: 6:30 am – The day starts with me getting my daughter up and ready for school. After I drop her off I try to head to the gym for a short workout (but I rarely go as often as I’d like). Once home I flip on my computer and read through my emails and blog comments while I eat my breakfast (I love this part of my day). Then it’s on to blogging (which is basically the rest of my day).Then it’s dinner and homework with my daughter, and maybe a walk or a game with her to unwind before I tuck her into bed. While she’s falling asleep I try to catch up on housework, sort through mail, etc. and once she’s out then I’m back to my computer again to wrap up details for posts going up on the following day. 12:30 am – Relax (read, play on my daughter’s Nintendo DS, draw, etc.) and at 2 am – Sleep!

Holly: What did you do before the blog?

Ez: Well, I was busy being a mom. I also worked at various fashion retail shops, went to school, and started sewing little softies (which is part of how I discovered blogging).

Holly: What’s next for you, future goals?

Ez: I’d love to see Creature Comforts continue to grow. I have some top secret ideas I’m working on for the (hopefully) near future, so that’s exciting!

Ez loves flowers! Ink & Peat is a shop that inspires her at the moment. Can you see why?! Wow!

Holly: What is your ultimate dream for yourself and your career?

Ez: Well I think that every artist dreams of being able to live off of their art, so I’d just love to be in that place (with my photography, blog, whatever). I’m not wealthy by any means, and financial stability would be the ultimate dream for me and my daughter. In twenty years (or less) I hope that I will have had the opportunity to work at a magazine or as a stylist or photographer for some major publications. That would be incredible!

Holly: You totally have the talent and ability to do that. In fact, I’m always looking at spreads in magazines and think, “God these people need Ez because this is all laid out so ‘typical’ and boring.” How do you get through a creative rut?

Ez: I think that creative ruts stem most frequently from self-doubt. When this happens I just try to be kind to myself and remember that I’ve been stuck before and I’ll get through it. Journaling helps too.

Holly: Let’s say you run into a competitive person who tries to copy your work or in other ways, wants to bring you down. How would you handle them?

Ez: This has happened before. There are basically two things that come to mind when/if this happens:
1. How sad. Sad that someone has so little belief in their own worth that they feel they need to copy or put someone down in order to have something valuable to offer. 2. I see imitation as a challenge to push myself harder to continue to create, evolve, and change. It’s not good to get too comfortable with sameness.

Holly: You need a new outfit, where do you shop? What are your favorite labels?

Ez: Well, I don’t have a lot of opportunities to update my wardrobe (my fashion budget is almost non-existent these days), but when I do shop I tend to rely upon J.Crew, and shops like Target and the Gap for basics. I like to pick up jewelry and accessories from indie designers on etsy and in local boutiques. I’m not a big label person. Fashion school kind of took that out of me.

Holly: What perfume do you wear?

Ez: If I feel like wearing a scent I just sprits on a little Coconut Lime Verbena body mist (sounds so middle-school) from the Bath & Body Works. It smells like a tropical sunset and I love it.

Holly: Your favorite designers?

Ez: My favorite fashion designers are John Galliano and Marc Jacobs, but I also adore Alexander McQueen for his incredible vision.

Holly: Describe your perfect getaway?

Ez: I’ve always wanted to travel to Paris. I’m teaching myself French currently. When I go I don’t only want to visit though… I’d need to live there for at least a year and fully immerse myself in the culture. I think that would be heaven!

Holly: Oh I agree! Three people you’d love to have lunch with and why?

Ez: 1. You (of course), 2. Melissa (my guest blogger and friend) and 3. Lauren (my best friend).
All three of you live on the East Coast and I’ve never met any of you (the internet is amazing that way). I think we’d have the most wonderful time laughing, talking, and otherwise inspiring one another. I hope it can really happen someday!

Holly: And finally… What trends do you love and which ones do you wish would go away?

Ez: Well something that has been building since I was younger is the trend towards individuality. I fully support that! It’s beautiful to be yourself! I hope that we see more acknowledgment of independent talent as well. I’d also love to see more public support of the people in our communities who are truly making a difference… and not pages and pages of celebrities who all look the same. Oh, and I could do without ever seeing another pair of Ugg boots ever again. :)

Would you like to see Ez and her world? Here are some lovely images of her home that will enjoy. It’s so exciting that she is sharing her space with us today.

Left: Ez’s desk (from ikea) and vintage school chair (picked up for $2). Right: Flowers are the best way to instantly perk up a space. Bottom: One of Ez’s inspiration boards created with wire and two nails – items are hung with clothespins. Displayed on it: a magazine tear, a giant letter E she cut out, “The Greatest Day” print by Corduroy, “Fungi” print from Groundwork, and “Doe Eyes” Print by Birdy & Me.


More views of her home office. Top: Storage drawers picked up for free topped with binders filled with magazine clippings and other inspirations, a vintage wire rack snagged for $1 and the first piece of home decor she ever purchased for herself (the lamp). Bottom: On the windowsill above her desk, fun little decorative things that make me smile: including a vintage deer figuring given to me by Melissa, and an original piece by Heather Smith Jones.


1. Another one of Ez’s inspiration boards where she has saved: a magazine tear, a drawing by her favorite teacher in college, and one of her softies. 2. A glimpse at the mini inspiration board on Ez’s desk. Artwork by Caitlin Shearer. 3. A stack of fabric ready for the next time inspiration strikes. 4. Ez’s rarely throws out a magazine, so this discarded metal magazine rack she picked up at a library comes in handy. 5. You can never have too much paint! 6. Balls of twine make beautiful sculptural objects and are useful too! 7. A collection of Ez’s magazines and books, as well as an owl figurine that she painted white (it was gold), and a treasured original painting found at a local antique shop.

Thank you Ez for visiting us today on decor8, for the two beautiful guest posts that you wrote while I was away, and for all of the wonderful artists and designers that you showcase on your blog each day that continually inspires us to reach high and keep on keepin’ on!

(images all from Creature Comforts)

Posted by decor8 in blogs, interviews on August 28, 2008

Your comments...

  1. Melissa de la Fuente commented
    August 28th, 2008 at 11:40am

    *sigh* Thank you,Holly, for this wonderful interview with one of the MOST lovely people I know. I adore hearing Ez’s views on blogging(and couldn’t agree more) She succeeds so beautifully in her goals; warmth, generosity and inspiration. Also, it is no surprise that your home and office are so lovely dear Ez but, it always inspires me when someone can be so creative and make so much out of $1 and $2 dollar finds, IKEA pieces and free leftovers. I love all your sweet touches…so bright and cheerful and I cannot think of a better time than sitting and having a meal with you, Holly and Lauren. One last thing….I have NO doubts that your ultimate dream for yourself and your career will ABSOLUTELY come true!
    xoxoxox
    Melissa

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  2. Elizabeth Floyd commented
    August 28th, 2008 at 11:59am

    EZ is very inspirational! Thanks for showcasing such a talented woman and her blog. I especially like how she solves getting out of a “creative rutt”, advice we can all benefit from.

    Elizabeth Floyds last blog post: Random sketch of a door…

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  3. Tara Hogan commented
    August 28th, 2008 at 12:01pm

    Creature comforts is a lovely blog and EZ is terrific : )

    Tara Hogan
    INK+WIT

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  4. Ann commented
    August 28th, 2008 at 12:12pm

    This was really a great interview. Ez, there was something in your answers that really make me want to get off my couch and do something. I think it’s due to the fact that we both shop at Target and the Gap and enjoy the scent of a good Bath & Body Works fragrance.

    Anns last blog post: About Nie

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  5. So Lovely commented
    August 28th, 2008 at 12:39pm

    That was such an inspiring interview. I think so many people have a desire to start a blog. And sadly it can become a popularity contest sometimes. But its such a treat to wander through your blogs.

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  6. Benita commented
    August 28th, 2008 at 2:07pm

    Oh, my two favourite bloggers all at once. Thank you :)
    Love the glimpses of Ez’s home!

    Benitas last blog post: A bit more color

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  7. erin commented
    August 28th, 2008 at 2:28pm

    i love EZ and creature comforts, her blog along with decor8 were my first introduction to design blogs, (now i’m hooked!) and these 2 still remain my favorite!! you two always provide beautiful imagery, and an original and POSITIVE point of view on the design world. i’ve found so many great things thanks to your blogs, and you remain to be my early morning pick-me-up!

    also loved all the guest bloggers, but happy hollys back! glad everything is going well in germany!

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  8. Juliette commented
    August 28th, 2008 at 2:32pm

    Hey, that was a really nice interview, I got really into it. Thanks! I enjoyed hearing how somebody else is living the dream (late nights and all)!

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  9. Elizabeth Villacorta commented
    August 28th, 2008 at 3:02pm

    Welcome back to your blog Holly! Thanks for this insightful interview and behind the scene look at the lovely EZ. I’ve been a huge fan of her blog and its nice to meet her (through you that is).
    ~EV

    Elizabeth Villacortas last blog post: { Esty Love }

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  10. rachel commented
    August 28th, 2008 at 3:40pm

    Thank you for this fantastic interview! Ez is amazing.

    rachels last blog post: Abner Graboff

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  11. Ez commented
    August 28th, 2008 at 4:08pm

    I just wish I could hug you all right now! Thank you all for your kind comments. It truly means the world to me!
    And thank you a million times over Holly for all the support and inspiration you’ve always given me. I am so lucky to call you my friend!

    Hugs all around!
    xox
    Ez

    Ezs last blog post: In Good Company: A View To

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  12. decor8 commented
    August 28th, 2008 at 4:10pm

    Okay everyone, Ez in the middle… Group Hug time!

    {{{{HUGS}}}}

    :)

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  13. maja @ tikoli commented
    August 28th, 2008 at 4:45pm

    thanks so much for another thoughtful post!

    maja @ tikolis last blog post: Hvid

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  14. maggie commented
    August 28th, 2008 at 5:06pm

    1. welcome back!
    2. EZ sounds like a really great person, someone that would be good for her outlook on life and just general chilling. :P

    maggies last blog post: poli-olies

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  15. simone commented
    August 28th, 2008 at 5:53pm

    Thanks for the wonderful interview. I am thinking about making my way into the blogging world and this gave me a bit of insight. Ez seems like a great person with a great outlook and life, art and business. I’m off to check out her blog now.

    simones last blog post: Lacey Love Handbag featuring Anna Maria Horner Fabric and the most fabulous lace….. Perfect for Fall

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  16. cindy k commented
    August 28th, 2008 at 6:07pm

    Ez + Holly = A Match Made In Heaven! Loved this interview.

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  17. Siw commented
    August 28th, 2008 at 6:40pm

    Thanks for the inspiration, lots of good stuff

    Siws last blog post: Interior photo

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  18. Clementine Cassie commented
    August 28th, 2008 at 7:45pm

    Thanks for this great interview, Holly! Decor8 and CC are my two favorite blogs, and I have to say you really captured Ez’s kindness and friendliness–as well as showing her kick a** design sense!

    Clementine Cassies last blog post: take pity on me

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  19. Grace @ Poetic Home commented
    August 29th, 2008 at 12:04am

    What a delightful interview! It was so nice to learn more about Ez, see her inspirations, and her lovely workspace! The entire correspondence was very insightful actually…especially the bit about emotions in the blogosphere. Thank you both kindly for sharing!!

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  20. flowerpress commented
    August 29th, 2008 at 12:05am

    Thanks guys for some really interesting thoughts about blogging, inspiration and the online world. I’m a great believer that honesty and truth win in the end :-)

    flowerpresss last blog post: Ruby Slippers, Gocco Print

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  21. laura commented
    August 29th, 2008 at 8:09am

    Great interview. I really loved learning more about her–She definitely succeeds in inspiring me each day!

    lauras last blog post: rikshaw design

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  22. creative writers commented
    August 29th, 2008 at 11:32am

    This was really a great interview. Thanks for showcasing such a talented woman and her blog. I especially like how she solves getting out of a ?creative rutt?, advice we can all benefit from. I think so many people have a desire to start a blog. And sadly it can become a popularity contest sometimes. But its such a treat to wander through your blogs.

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  23. Danielle commented
    August 29th, 2008 at 12:18pm

    Decor 8 and Creature Comforts are both such incredibly inspiring blogs. I start each day with them both (amongst others) and this interview is a lovely reminder that there are lovely and REAL people behind each one….with some of the same battles (not getting discouraged) and dreams (living in paris) as me. I think the blogging community is so supportive and nurturing. Most of us doing it or reading it have been collecting inspirations their whole lives and its fun to be able to share it, let it live outside of a binder of tear sheets and to see the beautiful way others collect theirs. I think blogging has been one of the most positive outcomes of this technological era we live in.

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  24. robyn commented
    August 30th, 2008 at 11:50pm

    This was a great interview, both of you are so kind and inspiring. Thank you so much for sharing.

    robyns last blog post: Put your learning caps on

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  25. collette commented
    September 4th, 2008 at 10:30pm

    I so enjoyed this. Thanks for a beautiful interview.
    It reminded me of the kindness in the blog community which far exceeds the negative bits (and too bad they exist !).
    The five words Ez used to describe herself I could also use to describe myself. And so much of what she spoke of I find true of myself. Especially the fact that her interests are ever changing, she dabbles in many things and that she admits her inability to stick to one thing forever. It’s so comforting to know I’m not alone in that department.

    collettes last blog post: It Pays To Be Nice

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  26. Aran commented
    November 7th, 2008 at 7:39am

    Ez has been such an inspiration to me since I found her work on flickr. Her photos bring me to another place. They are full of whimsy and softness. What a great interview… Many things I didn’t know about her and what a woman she must be! Thank you!

    Arans last blog post: Membrillo… Finally

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  27. Erika commented
    July 12th, 2012 at 8:33pm

    This was an amazing interview of one of the most inspiring bloggers out there!
    Thank you Holly for sharing this! :)

    xo,
    Erika

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