Our Meet the Maker series presented by American Express continues with Samantha Cisneros of Shapes & Colors Textiles. Samantha makes modern home decor and accessories in her San Francisco studio. All of her work is printed and sewn by hand… and it shows! We can’t get enough of her punchy geometric patterns and plan to snag MORE than a few items from her at Re:Make on September 13th.
Psst! Have YOU signed up for Re:Make yet? Stop procrastinating and be sure to register for FREE here! You won’t want to miss it. Okay, ready to hear more from Samantha? Here’s her story.
First things first, tell us a little bit about yourself.
My name is Samantha Cisneros and I love making. Ever since I was a little girl, I’ve always been drawn to anything and everything handmade. Whether it was sewing up quilted pillows, making my own clothes, or clothes for my dolls – I’ve always felt most like myself when working with fabric.
Why did you decide to start Shapes & Colors Textiles?
Shapes & Colors Textiles began with a need to make and a desire to do what I love for a living. The commercial textile industry was not appealing to me whatsoever – I mean, I really seriously need to always be doing something creative with my hands. Growing up, my parents told me that if I worked hard enough, I could do anything. So after graduating from college, I decided to test that theory out.
In five words or less, tell us why you love to make.
Making releases me.
What does the making process look like for you?
Messy! Fabric scraps everywhere, pattern paper spilling onto the floor, inks splattered over yards of fabric while trying to mix the *perfect* color, and a little boy playing at my feet. I am lucky enough to have a home office I can really spread out in.
What’s your favorite thing about screen printing and block printing?
I love the process of making. Screen printing and block printing gives me the bold, saturated look I’m going for with my work – and being able to watch the print unfold in front of me never ceases to fill me with joy and satisfaction.
We’re big fans of all of your home goods. Where do you get your inspiration?
I draw inspiration from my environment. The colors of flowers in my backyard, sunsets over the Pacific ocean, mid-century modern architecture, books from the library – I cast a wide net when searching for new inspiration, and I am never disappointed by this amazing city.
What’s one piece of advice you’d share with other makers?
If it isn’t working, move on and start over. I’m a firm believer in knowing when to call it quits.
What other creative hobbies do you have?
When I’m not printing and sewing, I love to work with clay. I’ve been taking wheel throwing classes in the Bay Area for about 5 years. It’s nice to have a creative outlet outside of work.
Tell us how technology has changed and supported what you do.
I am so grateful to live in the age of the Renegade Craft Fair, Etsy, Instagram, and Square! I’ve been able to get myself out there on the internet, show the world my process, and collect payments really easily at craft fairs thanks to technology.
What’s up next for you?
While home goods are my main focus right now, I’d like to expand my product line to include duvet covers, quilts, ottomans, and curtains.
Alright, have you fallen in love with Samantha yet? Then don’t forget! She’ll be joining us at Re:Make in SF on September 13th. Stop by to check out all of her colorful textiles!
This series is a collaboration with American Express. Visit the Shop Small® website to learn about how you can take part in Shop Small, a movement to celebrate small business.