Art can be many things. It can be a creative outlet, a way to express thoughts and emotions, the perfect addition to liven up a room and much more. For Vicki Sexton, local Lee County resident, it’s the family business. Sexton, a Beulah native has spent most of her life loving art, and what started as a hobby quickly developed into a way to play and interact with her children and is now a permanent part of her family’s life.
“I have always been crafty, and always liked to paint,” Sexton said. “Just going through life, I have always looked at ways I could up cycle or make something more appealing even if it’s just in my own mind.”
“When my kids were growing up and I was just a mom, I would play around with this craft and that,” Sexton said. “I always gave my kids craft kits when they were little and encouraged their creativity.
“Last year I saw a DIY resin tree with lights in it and asked the kids if they wanted to try some resin work. With my daughter, it just stuck.
“We have bought lots of molds, mostly for jewelry, and we have glitter coming out of our ears.”
She said that she while she had always enjoyed art, she had never considered it a viable source of income until her sister asked her to paint an original piece for her, building her confidence.
“Since then, I have done a few murals and many, many more paintings,” Sexton said. “Now people pay me to make stuff for them. It may be a wreath or a wall hanging. Gnomes are hot right now actually and I love them too, so I make a lot of them.”
Sexton said that while her strengths are in painting and crafts, her daughter, Phoebe, is talented at drawing and sketching, making them the perfect partners.
“She is pretty dang good at [drawing], I know this sounds crazy, but I really can’t draw,” Sexton said. “Shading and highlighting without color makes no sense to me but Phoebe has that down.
“I remember in high school; we had an art class for a minute, the instructor wanted us to choose a piece from an art magazine to recreate as our final project. I chose a self-portrait with lots of bright colors and no flesh tones, I never did finish it, but the teacher gave me a 100 because of the accuracy and time I spent on it.”
Sexton said that she still has trouble with drawing people and sketches with no colors, but luckily her daughter Phoebe’s talent more than makes up for it.
Sexton said that while her son, Riley, does not share the same interest in crafts, he brings some of his own creativity to their family in other ways.
“He is currently pursuing his education and a career a computer animation,” Sexton said. “While you will probably never see his creativity in my shop, you will probably see it on the big screen one day.”
Sexton said that her own mother, who was also an artist, inspired her love for art and anything involving a paintbrush.
Sexton said that it has been the biggest blessing to have the opportunity to run her business with her daughter.
“Shopping for new molds and pretty things to put in the resin is fun and did I mention the amount of glitter?” Sexton said. “It’s not all rainbows and butterflies, teenagers can lack motivation sometimes. It takes some nagging and encouragement sometimes. And then there is a balancing act between encouragement and nagging. I never want to force her to fill an order because I want her to want to do this.”
As of right now, the business is strictly on social media, specifically Facebook and focuses largely on jewelry, hair clips and accessories. However, Sexton said that she hopes to redirect her work back to painting in the new year, as that is where her true passion lies.
“Phoebe [Sexton’s daughter] hopes to do some bigger pieces like trays, trinket boxes and coaster sets this year,” Sexton said. “She is also getting ready to try her hand at crocheting little stuffed animals.”
Sexton said that she also plans to expand the social media outreach of the business in 2023.
“We are going to start promoting with more content on social media, like clips of us actually creating art and resin pieces and we want to start an actual online store,” Sexton said. “Our interests and abilities are vast and ever-expanding. I feel that our craft business will be fluid and constantly change to fit those interest and abilities, but I will always do customer work as well.”
Sexton said that she has had many fond memories since opening the business, but her favorite has been watching her daughter’s confidence and passion for art grow.
“I love watching that moment of ‘Hey, I made this and someone else actually likes what I made,’” Sexton said. “We love working craft shows together too, although we do butt heads on those early morning set-ups when we would rather be still sleeping.”
“It always comes together though, and I think she enjoys seeing people admire her work as much as I do.”