I met Kayte Turner at her Handmade District craft fair earlier this year, and have always been impressed with just how much time and energy she spends giving back to the community, while still having time to create one of a kind bags, bike basket liners (I have one!) and coasters for her indie craft company Lucky Find Designs.
After the jump, get to know Kayte and enter to win one of her handmade purses!
OC Weekly: Tell us about you - what's do you do when you're not crafting?
Kayte Turner: During the da,y I am a super hero that fights off evil distributors of the underground. But don't tell anyone because my job working for the the non-profit Music Saves Lives as the Internal Operations and Productions Manager would definitely be jeopardized.
OCW: So how did you come to start Lucky Find Designs?
KT: I was driving down the 5 freeway with a friend, and he was talking about the clothing label he just started. I didn't really have much going on at the time in the way of crime fighting, so I decided it was time to dust off my sewing machine.
OCW: When did you learn how to sew?
KT: My grandma and my mom taught me how to sew when I was about 5. I had a little pink singer sewing machine that had matching battery operated scissors, and I used to chace my brother with them. (note from Steph - I totally had that same sewing machine and scissors!)
OCW: What's your favorite fabric store? Any good ones in the OC you would recommend?
KT: I love the JoAnn's in Orange. I used to work there, so every time I go in it's like catching up with old friends... (OK not really since I'm in there at least once a week) Other than that, I'm a big fan on M&L Fabrics in Buena Park. It's the biggest fabric store in Orange County (that I can find) and I can spend hours in there. They carry a lot of the fun Alexander Henry/Robert Kaufman prints that big box stores don't, AND they're cheaper than driving allllllll the way to LA for the fabric district.
OCW: You're superinvolved with the charity Music Saves Lives - tell us a little about that charity.
KT: Music Saves Lives has been a non-profit I've supported for over 3 years (longer than I've worked there). Music Saves Lives educate's the youth of North America about donating blood on a regular basis. When they participate in our program, we give them backstage passes to concert and exclusive meet and greets with bands. From May - August of this year we aided in collecting over 70,000 units of blood and potentially saved over 210,000 lives. Over 14,000 of those units were collected in southern California alone!
OCW: Your Handmade District craft show this year benefitted that charity - what are your thoughts on planning that craft show, and will you do it again?
KT: It was a lot of fun (and work), and the first time I had organized anything that big. I'm thinking about doing it again around Mother's Day 2009.
OCW: Tell us about the other non-profits you support.
KT: Music Saves Lives is the only one that I'm really super involved with, but there are a couple more that I support like Keep A Breast (breast cancer research), Unite The United (a non-profit that helps other non-profits raise money), The American Red Cross, Skate 4 Cancer (cancer research), Music Cares (helps injured musicians with their medical bills), Hurley's Living The Dream (helps terminally ill children fulfill life loving dreams)
OCW: Why is it so important to give back?
KT: It's something that has been instilled in me for a long time. I was a Girl Scout for 11 years, so I've seen that even the smallest amount of effort can make a big impact.
OCW: Do you do custom orders?
KT: I do!! I take custom orders on bike basket liners.
OCW: Any shows coming up for Lucky Find Designs?
KT: I'll be vending at a Cuts for Cancer event on October 11 at Joshua Christopher Salon (click here for a map) and Villa Park High school's Craft Show on October 24, from 9am-3pm (click here for a map).
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Want a chance to win one of Kayte's fabulous purses? It's easy - leave a comment on this blog post anytime before midnight on Friday, October 9 and you'll automatically be entered in our random drawing! Comment as many times as you wish (we love conversations on here!) but only one entry will be counted per person, and if you've won in the last 30 days you'll be ineligible so others can have a chance at awesomeness.
For more information on Lucky Find Designs, including a constantly-updated list on craft shows where you can visit Kayte and see her wares in person, visit her website . You can also visit her blog, facebook page, Etsy shop and Twitter.