Ah… To do what you love.

To anyone who has created anything from scratch, isn’t that the dream? We love it when we find people doing that. Can you imagine if people all over our country were finding ways to live off their passion and even thrive? Is it too much a stretch to think that the Philippines could one day be the creative hub of the world?

Meream Pacayra is doing just that. Every day, she gets to do what she loves. We don’t want to simply say she is into arts and crafts. That would be understating the value of her work. She’s doing much more than that. She is making the world a more beautiful place; one carved stamp, one colorful piece of thread, one screen print and one lovingly handmade piece at a time.

meream pacayraPlease introduce yourself and let us know what you do. 

My name is Meream, cat lady, coffee lover, crafter. I write boredandcrafty.com and own the local handmade brand, Thimblecap. 

I remember sharing the link to your blog way back in 2012. That was a long time ago! When and how did you start? 

The craft blog was born many moons ago (2007). Somewhere along the way, people started showing interest in the items I was making for the blog. And that is how Thimblecap came to be. It was only a matter of time, really, since the house was getting quite full with the items I was sewing. I had to find a way to “get rid” of them and selling the items to lovely people who support handmade was the best way to do it. 

Wow! Your blog started 2007? That’s crazy. You’ve probably been crafting much much longer than that. There has to be a story on how you got into crafts.

I have always made things. My first love was drawing since I grew up with a sister and cousins who draw. You should have seen the gazillion paper dolls I made in grade school. I ruined many books and wasted a lot of paper. I didn’t start sewing properly (i.e. with patterns) until I took up Home Ec. in high school but I clearly remember the day I got bitten by the sewing bug. It was the day I saw my lola’s antique hand crank Singer sewing machine. I was seven, the machine was getting rusty but I thought it was made of magic. When I was around 10 or 11, I started amassing random materials for making things. I remember making my own wind chimes using items “stolen” from my father’s tool box. It was crude but it made pleasant sounds hanging from my bedroom window. 

Talk about the crafts scene in Cebu. 

There are many fantastically talented crafters in our city. And there are many equally fantastic supporters of handmade as well. We have yet to form a community, sure, but we’re getting there. It helps that more and more makers are joining bazaars. With the help of ANTHILL and CraftMNL, we are also taking steps into creating CraftCEB. The goal is to organize handmade fairs, workshops, and offer support for local crafters. 

We introduced CraftCEB late last year during the Maker’s Market in Anthill. The plan is to reach more Cebuano makers this year and in the years to come with more craft fairs and events.

CraftMNL and ANTHILL are both helping bring CraftCEB to life. 

thimblecap workstationDo you have a day job? If yes, do you have a tough time balancing this with your day job? I feel like it’s something plenty of people struggle with. 

I am a freelance writer. I work from home so I’m quite lucky to not have to deal with the time management problem too much. Difficulties occur when making gets in the way of writing. Sometimes, I take a break from writing by keeping my hands busy with fabric, beads, paint, etc. Before I know it, the break has lasted four hours, I have a finished bag in my hand, and the writing is far from done. 

What kinds of products are you working on? Anything new? Maybe even more stuff for the Assembly? Haha! 

We have been busy screen printing the past few weeks. Screen printed purses are currently in production but with this new method, we are also looking into making bags with our own fabric designs. From here, we plan to venture into apparel, baby stuff, and home decor. The Assembly will always have dibs on any of our new products. 😀 

Are you still getting bogged down with lots of orders? Is there a plan to grow your operation? Get someone who can help you with production?

Orders are still coming in but my own two hands can still manage to handle everything. Right now, we are a two-man operation. Uzi handles the art direction, design, and screen printing. My job falls under patterns, sewing, online shop management, and making products ready for display. Once we pursue distribution aggressively, though, we will definitely look into getting more people to help us out. 

thimblecapDo you plan to organize more craft workshops? What has the feedback been like?

Yes! The feedback has been awesome. Right now, I am in talks with several local cafes. I hope to hold rubber stamp carving and papercutting workshops in March. The plan is to teach one or two workshops every month starting next month. 

How do people get in touch with you?

Email: handmadewhimsy@gmail.com / FB message: https://www.facebook.com/boredandcraftyblog

*As of this posting, Meream has a workshop coming up. You should check it out. See below for the poster and details.

**Also Thimblecap products are sold in the Assembly in JY Square. Come and visit!

Papercutting workshop thimblecap bored and crafty

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