We’re thrilled to introduce the talented Agnes of ikki-likki. Hailing from Slovakia, Agnes planted roots in the United States in 2005 and now proudly calls the coastal haven of Wilmington, NC, home. She is the creative force behind stunning oyster shell ornaments and eco-friendly soaps that not only showcase her artistic prowess but also reflect her commitment to sustainable practices. Through a series of questions, we got to know Agnes and a bit more about her business.
Briefly tell us a bit about yourself:
Originally from Slovakia, I made the United States my home in 2005 and am now a proud US citizen. I’ve settled in the coastal town of Wilmington, NC, which I absolutely adore. In my free time, outside of work and crafting, you’ll often find me playing beach volleyball or taking scenic bike rides. At home, I share my space with two beautiful dogs and a cherished 18-year-old cat who’s been a part of my life since I made the United States my home.
How did you get started making?
Frustrated with the excessive plastic waste generated by conventional body wash containers, I decided to take matters into my own hands. I began my creative endeavor by crafting eco-friendly soaps that not only promote a sustainable lifestyle but also embody artistic flair. Each soap I make is a canvas for imagination, featuring various designs such as a curious cat gazing at the moon or a layered composition adorned with a delightful honeybee.
My venture into the world of handmade goods expanded during one memorable Christmas when I crafted oyster shell ornaments as heartfelt gifts for family and friends. Their enthusiastic reception inspired me to incorporate these unique ornaments into my product line. My passion for creativity knows no bounds, and I’m constantly exploring new crafts and innovative ideas to add to my store. At the core of it all is a commitment to offering environmentally conscious, artistically inspired products that bring joy and sustainability to my customers’ lives.
Is there a story behind your shop name?
It all goes back to my childhood when my sister and I used to invent words and rhymes, often to the amusement (and sometimes frustration) of our mother. In our kitchen drawer, we had two distinct types of teaspoons, and we whimsically named them “ubi-lubi” and “ikki-likki.” When my sister ventured into the world of online retail and named her shop “ubi-lubi,” it felt only fitting and sentimental for me to carry forward this cherished tradition by naming my own store “ikki-likki.” It’s a nostalgic homage to those playful moments of creativity from our past and a unique touch that makes my shop name truly special.
Is this your full-time business?
No, it is not my full-time business. I wear a different hat during the day as a corporate accountant, navigating the world of numbers and finances. However, to balance the structured corporate accounting world, I’ve discovered solace and inspiration in the realm of artistic expression. My nights and weekends are dedicated to crafting, where I channel my creativity into the creation of unique products. Crafting, for me, is not just a hobby but a form of relaxation and a means of infusing artistry into my life.
Where does your inspiration come from?
My inspiration flows from the everyday moments of life. Often, ideas simply pop into my head during the course of the day, sparked by anything from a passing thought to a memorable experience. The beauty of the ordinary fuels my creativity, turning everyday occurrences into potential works of art.
How do you stay motivated?
As for staying motivated, I’m naturally inclined to stay busy and embrace the creative process. I find immense satisfaction in crafting and bringing my ideas to life, so motivation isn’t something I struggle with. In fact, if I could, I’d wish for more hours in a day to fit in all the creative pursuits I have in mind. The desire to explore new ideas and the joy I find in crafting keeps me energized and driven to create new, unique pieces for my shop.
Where do you create?
I’m fortunate to have a dedicated craft room right in my own home, and it’s undoubtedly my favorite room in the entire house. This cozy haven is where the magic happens and where every artistic creation takes shape. As I work on my crafts, I’m often accompanied by my four-legged friends. They enjoy keeping me company in this creative sanctuary. With ample natural light streaming in, shelves filled with colorful supplies, and a comfortable workspace, my craft room is a source of inspiration and relaxation.
It’s a space where imagination takes flight and where I can let my creativity run wild.
What does your day as a maker look like?
As a part-time maker, my days are wonderfully varied, allowing me to embrace the unique rhythm of my creative journey. On weekends, I start with a fresh cup of coffee and settle down at my computer to manage the various aspects of my online presence, from updating social media to attending to administrative tasks.
One of the highlights of my maker’s life is when I embark on the occasional adventure to the beach. There, I have the pleasure of collecting oyster shells—a task that feels more like a treasure hunt than work. Who wouldn’t want such beachcombing to be a part of their day?
In the evenings, I find solace and creative inspiration by painting these oyster shells.
Because of the wonderfully diverse nature of my business, each day unfolds differently, and I simply go with the creative flow. It’s this flexibility and the joy of embracing the unexpected that make my journey as a maker truly special.
Do you have a favorite product to make? or material you work with?
While it’s challenging to pinpoint a single favorite product among my creations, I can tell you that what I truly enjoy the most is the process of cutting the soap. You see, when I craft soap, I don’t get to see the final design until it’s time to cut it into individual bars. The anticipation of that moment when I finally get to see how the design has turned out is absolutely thrilling. It’s like unwrapping a surprise gift with each cut, and the unique results of every batch never fail to amaze and excite me. This aspect of soapmaking adds an element of wonder and keeps the creative process consistently engaging and enjoyable.
What is your most popular product?
I’d say the standout favorites of my customers are the oyster shell Christmas ornaments adorned with nutcracker designs. These ornaments have captured many’s hearts and become a cherished part of my collection. What makes them even more special is the fact that I craft them all year round in anticipation of the festive holiday season. Working on these ornaments, even as early as March or June, fills me with the warm and joyful spirit of Christmas. It’s a delightful reminder that the holiday season is just around the corner, and I take great pleasure in bringing a touch of that holiday magic to our customers’ homes.
What makes your shop unique?
What sets ikki-likki apart is my unwavering commitment to crafting exceptional products and delivering a unique and memorable experience to my customers. I believe that every aspect of a purchase should be special from the moment it arrives on your doorstep. My dedication to eco-conscious practices is evident in my packaging. Each soap is lovingly encased in eco-friendly paper box, which I personally handstamp using a linocut stamp I made and designed.
My oyster shell ornaments arrive in a carefully transformed gift box. I’ve turned a plain box into a beautiful gift presentation using my embossed paper creations. When you open one of my boxes, it’s not just a product; it’s an experience that feels like unwrapping a cherished present. These thoughtful details make ikki-likki a unique and delightful shopping destination for my valued customers.
Why did you choose to sell on goimagine?
The decision to sell on goimagine was a thoughtful one for several compelling reasons. One of the primary factors that drew me to this platform is their commitment to feature handcrafted items exclusively. In a world where many other platforms often host a wide array of products, including mass-produced goods from various sources, goimagine stands out by showcasing the craftsmanship and artistry of independent makers.
Additionally, I was deeply impressed by goimagine’s dedication to giving back. The fact that they donate profits to charity aligns with my own values and reinforces the idea of making a positive impact through our creative endeavors. This combination of supporting artisans and contributing to charitable causes made goimagine the ideal choice for me as a platform to share my handcrafted products with a like-minded community of shoppers.
Where can we find ikki-likki?
Shop: goimagine.com/ikkilikki For a limited time, save 10% with code ikkilikki
Stephanie is naturally creative and is passionate about art, design, and everything handmade. She has always enjoyed exploring new techniques and trends in the handmade industry and has channeled this into her role as the Creative Director and co-founder of goimagine. Through her love for creating, she has successfully sold her unique wares, which range from fine art to simple crafts, in both online and in-person markets.