TWS: Describe your favorite piece that you have ever made and why.
ER: My favorite piece is from a weird collection I made while I was attending a ceramic residency in Maine, during the summer of 2016. There is something to be said for letting yourself goof around and make some weird stuff; it can really inform your “serious” work when you’re ready. It’s a small footed plate, made using a local Maine, red brick clay. It has flecks of color embedded in the surface, and raised polka dots all over. The polka dots are glazed with my bright gold, and I really love this piece. It is one of the only things I’ve let myself keep.
TWS: If you didn’t decide to become an entrepreneur in the ceramics industry, what would you be up to right now?
ER: I have always wanted to be a florist. Even though I have gone in another direction with my career, it’s something that I’ve always dreamed about, and it’s probably something I won’t ignore forever. I imagine a small shop someday, and providing florals within the shop are a high priority for me.
TWS: You recently shared on social media that you sort of lost your sense of self in 2017. What are you doing this year to re-find or revive yourself?
ER: This is still something I’m trying to figure out. Depression has a way of knocking you off your desired path for a while, and I’m trying to find my way back to the path. I’ve been working really hard on finding more balance and taking more time off this year. I love what I do, but for the last two years, I used my work and my career to fill every single space in my life. It quickly revealed itself to be an unhealthy way of living. I’m reading more books, finding new hobbies, and making more time for my friends, and I’m hoping to find some strength and regained confidence in myself.
TWS: What are five things that you can’t live without that you use religiously?
ER: My dog Ruby is my best friend, so let’s add her to this list. Next would be a nice candle, my blender, lip balm, and coffee!
TWS: If you were reincarnated as an animal, which would you be and why?
ER: Definitely an indoor dog. Preferably a spoiled dog who is allowed on furniture gets lots of snuggles, and even some table scraps. (Like Lucy, or my own, Ruby.)
TWS: What’s next for you? Do you have any upcoming projects you can share with us? Any new business ventures?
ER: Moving my studio out of my home (the garage) is the highest priority for me now. I’ve been ready to expand my team, but space has been an issue. I look forward to the growth that a new studio will provide me. I am most looking forward to getting it set up and looking the way I want it to. Creating a space (whether its my home or my studio) is one of my favorite things to do. It will be a great fresh start and I look forward to seeing where it takes my work too.
TWS: What’s one thing that you’ve done today that no one knows about?
ER: A ham and cheese croissant is maybe my favorite thing to eat, ever. I sneak away without telling anyone where I’m going, and I go get myself a croissant! I have a safe rotation of my favorites so that the people working at the cafes and bakeries won’t judge me on how often I eat them. I don’t eat them every day, but I definitely had one today. It’s my secret obsession! I probably need to cut back eventually.
TWS: What quality do you most admire in women?
ER: A strong, confident woman can be spotted whether you know her or not. There’s almost an aura to it, and I really admire women who carry themselves in this way. I think I’m faking confidence more often than not, and I hope it gets easier with age. A woman who feels great in her own skin and lives for herself is really admirable.
TWS: What’s an issue going on in the world that you feel strongly about?
ER: The Me Too movement has been pretty powerful to witness and to experience in my own life. There’s a strength in numbers feeling, and I sense that the magnitude will only grow over time. We don’t have to feel like we’re all alone anymore, and that does a lot for a woman who has experienced sexual violence or harassment.
TWS: As a Kansas City native, what are 5 places that you would recommend to someone visiting that are must-sees/must-dos/must eats while they’re in town?
ER: My favorite place to eat and drink is Ca Va - a little French inspired champagne bar. My favorite plant shopping destination is Family Tree Nursery. Somehow, it’s one of the warmest places in the city during the winter, and you’re surrounded by amazing plants and garden things. I love visiting The National Toy and Miniature Museum - a place my mom used to take my sisters and I when we were kids. It’s close to my house and a place I go to clear my head. I love walking in Loose Park on nice afternoons. It’s a great place to take my dog, even though she gets a little too excited with each dog she meets. My favorite neighborhood in KC is the Westside neighborhood. I drive up and park, and then walk around the neighborhood admiring all of the homes and pretending like I belong there too.