Close Up with Hand Bag Designer Sasha Faint From Faint Impression

Sasha Faint
Faint Impressions Copyright 
I first met Sasha last year at the Sydney Stitches and Craft Show. Sasha came to one of our business seminars for creative people. The one about “How to creative a successful business from doing what you love”. After that seminar Sasha signed up for our three month coaching programme.  

Sasha is fun to work with, full of energy, and understands her DPP (desire, passion and purpose). As a talented designer Sasha creates beautiful  hand made handbags well finished with plenty features and details.  Sasha certainly has a great eye for colours and fabrics too. On of one Sasha’s strength is an eye for colour and fabric coordination. You can rely on Sasha to create something unique and beautiful.

So the next time you’re looking for a handbag for someone special or if you’re planning to give yourself a treat, may I suggest you to drop by Sasha’s online boutique and check out the Faint Impressions’ range of handbags and other accessories.

To connect with other creative souls and hand bag lovers, Sasha also runs hand bag making workshop in Sydney. The workshop is limited to four people, so there’s plenty of one to one teaching. And that means Sasha has plenty of time and opportunity to share her creative skills and knowledge with all workshop participants. The workshop also includes a delectable high tea with french music playing in the background to inspire your creativity…

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Tell us a little about yourself and what you do.

Three years ago I would have told you I didn’t have a creative bone in my body. Since buying a sewing machine three years ago that has all changed and so has my life. What started out as a hobby has now become my occupation and given me the chance to own my own business doing what I love, which is something I NEVER thought possible.

I’m a designer and maker of all things bag and I also run bag-making workshops. Occasionally I dabble in the odd Bedside Organiser or Jewellery Travel Pouch but bags are my main creative outlet.

I sell my bags at artisan markets in Sydney and Melbourne, online and also selected retail outlets.

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Who (or what) inspires you to do what you love in your own creative business?

Amy Butler was my inspiration for starting to make bags. Her amazing bright and beautiful fabrics drew me in and her fantastic bag designs taught me many a bag-making trick. She continues to surprise and inspire me with her ever expanding business empire.

My partner Cameron also inspires me. Owning your own business can be an emotional roller coaster ride and Cam offers me incredible support and encouragement. I honestly couldn’t do it without him.

 Sasha & Cameron
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Where do you get your inspiration from when you design?

Fabric is the thing that excites me and makes me want to create a new bag. When I see a fabric that stands out from all the others with it’s beautiful colours, patterns and prints, I really want to design a bag that will show off its best features and make others adore it too. Once I have an idea for a new design, I have to make it straight away. I can’t wait to see the finished product with the complementing colour combinations in all their glory.

What are the five words that people who know you would use to describe you?

Hmm…determined, patient, stubborn, fun, caring.

Tell us about your very first job and what path have you taken since then?

Well my first real job after I completed a Bachelor of Business-Hospitality Management, was a hotel receptionist. I didn’t find it very fun so I tripped off overseas for 3.5 years. Lucky I went to university for three years to find that out!

I love the Japanese culture and language and have studied Japanese since year 9, so I went to Japan and taught English in Osaka for 1.5 years. I have only recently quit my full-time job as an Administration & Accommodation Manager for an English language college for international students. Now I’m the bag lady!

Custom made Baby Bag
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Describe a typical day in your studio space?

I get up at 7.30am and go to the gym, that’s my human contact for the day and keeps me sane and healthy.

My day changes all the time, I could be writing for my blog, designing a new bag, organising a workshop, sewing sewing sewing, updating my online shop, approaching magazines or doing a bag photo shoot. Amidst all of that I am having cups of tea, eating lunch in the sunny spot on the carpet, stretching (as I sit down a lot) and thinking of ways I can grow my business.

The beauty of it is that I can choose what I want to do and I love it all.

As an Designer, what is your biggest frustration?

Putting a lot of hours and effort into making a bag and not being able to charge the right price for it………yet.

Tell us about how you prioritise your studio work.

I have a white board I write my weekly goals on. I then break them down in to daily tasks I need to do to achieve my goals. I love the satisfaction of crossing things off my list.

Since you are working at home, can you please tell us about how you connect with other artists, and your customers (i.e. how do you network)?

At the moment I don’t do enough of it, it’s something I really need to focus on.

I chat to other stallholders at markets, through my blog and facebook group. I’m looking for a regular networking group at the moment and would love to attend a social sewing group once a month.

What advice can you offer other creative people who are just starting out and following their passions?

-Take the risk and ask, they can only say no. Fear is not a growth strategy (Terry Hawkins)

-Love what you do because you are going to be doing it for many hours a day.

-Have good systems in place that keep you organised; costing sheets, goal lists etc

-Create a nice workspace that you enjoy being in.

-Talk to as many people in your industry as possible; you learn so much from others experiences.

-Surround yourself with people who believe in what you are trying to achieve and support you all the way as you will doubt yourself often but only for short periods.

What dreams do you still want to achieve or fulfil in your life?

To have a shop in Sydney in a pretty suburb full of gorgeous hand made products from makers all over Australia, including my own. Upstairs will be the studio where we have weekly classes on things like sewing, screen-printing and photography.

A decadent afternoon tea would definitely be involved and I would be living among this lovely creative community where people really love to visit and I look forward to work each day.

What is your proudest moment so far?

Having one of my products accepted to be in the next issue of Frankie Magazine.

Keep an eye out for my Bedside Organiser; next issue out June 23rd.

 Bedside Organiser
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Who do you most want to meet and why?

Myself at age 17yr to tell myself to do something creative at university.

What is the most important lesson in life that you have learned?

Respect and trust, they’re sometimes difficult to earn but once you’ve lost them they almost never come back, so take care of them.

What book are you reading right now, and do you have a book you would like to recommend?

I’m reading Frankie and Notebook magazine and I just ordered a book from the USA called The Handmade Marketplace, which is all about running a creative business.

I would recommend you buy the next issue of Frankie!

Where do we find you and your products?
Vinh Van Lam
the authorVinh Van Lam
Vinh Van Lam, co-founder of ArtSHINE, is a visionary art coach and entrepreneur with a passion for fostering creativity. With a diverse background in art and business, he brings a unique perspective to empower emerging artists, enabling them to thrive in the dynamic art industry through the innovative platform of ArtSHINE.

1 Comment

  • Great interview, I love Sasha’s bags.
    i bought one of her clutch bag last year at the Eveleigh market.
    it is my favourite bag.

    Thanks for the inspiration Sasha n. ArtShine


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