Please welcome Andrea and her Etsy shop We Are Bound Together
Creating with brightly coloured or traditional grey duct tape; Andrea also adds a simple and modern design, sometimes with a bit of punk to her product. All proceeds from her Etsy shop are donated to helping persecuted Christians around the world.
Now let's discover Andrea and We Are Bound Together
What is the first creative memory you have?
I have been artsy since I before I can remember. I have always been into drawing, painting and creating. I have a framed picture on my desk that my Kindergarten teacher took of me. In the photo I'm working hard at the painting easle in my pick sweatpants. It just continued to grow from there.
What or whom began your creative journey on Etsy?
I had heard about Etsy a few years ago from a friend, who said it was “dangerous” (as in there is so many neat things you just want to buy it all). Then a few months ago I figured I could open up my own Etsy store. We had recently moved back to Canada after being in Australia for a couple of years. It was the right time to start something myself, to go somewhere with my bookbinding.
How did you come up with your shop name?
I started my business on Etsy with the intent to raise funds to support persecuted Christians around the world through organizations like Voice of the Martyrs and Open Doors. We have so much here in Western Countries. We have freedom and we don't have to worry about were our next meal will come, or if we will be unemployed and beaten up because of our religion. The name “We Are Bound Together” has a double meaning in that I feel, as a Christian, bound together with other believers around the world. Also my books are handbound – bound together. The name is a double meaning.
Describe what creations you have in your shop?
I started out with funky coloured duct tape books. These aren't just recovered journals, but I make the whole book from scratch. I use reclaimed millboard (from binders and such) for the cover, tear the paper for the pages by hand, and hand sew it all together.
I also do leather bound books. Unlike the duct tape books which are hardcovers, the leather have soft covers. This style is known as limp binding. I love working with the soft leather and how pretty each book turns out. These books range from fancy diamond stitched spines to cute mini leather book keychains.
All my books are blank inside which makes them great as a journal, or a sketchbook.
Non-book related, I also carry RFID blocking credit card sleeves in funky colours to protect your cards from electronic pickpocketing. These are not just duct tape covered over RFID blocking sleeves. But they are tyveck sleeves (to protect your card from scratches, etc) covered with aluminium (to protect your card from electronic skimmers) and covered with duct tape to protect the aluminium and make them pretty.
What insprires you?
I get inspired by different things. As a person I am naturally motivated and despite having a disease that prevents me from holding a “regular” job, I feel great knowing that I can still do something and help others by my work. I am also inspired by just resting and taking it easy. Sometimes when we get too busy doing something, we lose our passion for doing it. So I enjoy the sunshine, take a break for the day. Usually, especially when I am too sick to work, my mind starts churning out ideas for when I come back to my work.
What do you listen to or watch while creating?
I really enjoy the music of Ludovico Einaudi, a modern piano composer with absolutely beautiful music. Although, sometimes the really pretty pieces distract me for a bit too.
Please share a favorite recipe
My favourite recipe is a bit of a “taste as you go” one. When I got diagnosed with endometriosis I was advised to stay away from gluten, dairy and refined sugar. So, one of the first things I did was find a chocolate recipe! It's made up, so it's really to your own taste.
Place approximately equal parts (say 1/4 cup) peanut/almond butter, coconut milk, and cocoa powder in a pan. Heat on low, careful burnt chocolate is not good. It helps to mix the nut butter and milk together first, then add the cocoa. Add a splash of vanilla, a tablespoon or so of coconut oil. This is where the real taste part comes in. Add some sweetener of choice. The best ones being maple syrup or coconut sugar. Honey is too overpowering for chocolate. It really depends on your sweetener as to how much to put in. I also like dark chocolate, while some like it not so dark.
You can make this as thick or as thin as you like. I usually make it to a fudge like consistency and have coconut milk and flaked coconut on top.
Where else can we find you?