Designer of the Week - Poshibilities

This week get to know Chaleen Spencer of Poshibilities.

She lives in East Texas with her three daughters who are each a dream come true: Margo (6), Lauren (4), and Meredith (4). And a loving and patient(!) husband of 10 years, Troy.

See Chaleen's current eBay auctions: Poshibilities and add Poshibilities to your favorite eBay sellers list: Click Here:

JM: Chaleen, When did you get started creating bags?

CHALEEN: A little over two years ago. I made my first bag in January of 2004, but it feels as if I have been doing this forever!

JM: When did you start selling your designs on eBay and do you sell anywhere else besides eBay?

CHALEEN: I always knew I had a thing for fabric, but I didn't know how to do anything with it, so I avoiding buying any -- yet I was still strongly drawn to it. When my twins were born, I wanted them to have a security item that was small (unlike my oldest daughter's big blankie), and that I wouldn't be embarrassed to be seen with! In the fall of 2002, I began making small, baby security blankets, using faux animal fur and satin, and I sold them on eBay. About a year later, I was searching eBay for a tote bag for my oldest daughter to use for carrying her things to church. At that time, there were only a handful of bags for little girls listed on eBay. That is when I decided to branch out into making bags. I was originally going to do only girl's bags, but once I began shopping for fabric that wasn't just animal fur or satin, that is when my fabric passion hit full fledge! I just could not limit myself to little girl bags, and the second bag I made was a full size diaper tote.

I have sold to local boutiques in the past, but at this time, eBay is my only venue -- by choice. I hope to branch out to selling on my own website once all of my kids are in school full time.

Before eBay, I worked for several years as a criminal law paralegal, and I loved my work. I still have a love for the law, but you just can't beat being your own boss and doing what you are passionate about while being home with your children!

JM: Do you remember the first item you sold on eBay?

CHALEEN: I will never forget the first bag I sold on eBay! It was a Cat in the Hat diaper bag and it sold for $27.00. I was ecstatic!! The minute I finished that bag, I was ready to start the next. I couldn't make them fast enough!

JM: Where did come up with your name?

CHALEEN: The Poshibilities name is a collaboration between myself and my wonderful, best friend of 24 years, Sharla, who sells under the same name. I originally sold my security blankets under the name Cherished Baby. Once I started doing more than just diaper bags (i.e., purses, wedding bags, backpacks, etc.), that name no longer fit. At that time Sharla and I were working together on starting a joint venture and we were trying to come up with a name. Poshibilities was born. Since then we have discovered that it is easier for us to keep our work separate,
so we both continue to use the name (as confusing as it may be!), and we still dream of doing something together someday.

JM: Do you belong to any boutique group?

CHALEEN: I currently belong to ODODtoo, which is an all accessory group and the sister group to ODOD (Original Designs by Original Designers). This is a fabulous group of ladies who are super supportive and wonderful to work with! Because we are an accessory only group, there is less pressure than a traditional design group. We are very laid back and flexible, which helps keep things fun!

JM: What is your favorite type of bag to create? Why?

CHALEEN: I still really enjoy doing little girl's bags and purses. They're quick to do, and while still keeping them practical, I can go a little more whimsical with these and just have fun. The only downside to making little girl bags is having three daughters! One of the twins asks me every time, "are you going to sell that one?"

JM: If you could learn some new skills, what would they be?

CHALEEN: I am very interested in fabric design, and would just be thrilled to learn the entire process for that. I am also always striving to learn new sewing techniques and develop new designs. I enjoy coming up with fun items such as Halloween totes, Easter baskets, Christmas card baskets, and more.

JM: If you could travel anywhere, where would it be?

CHALEEN: I went to Australia with my drill team while in high school, and I have always wanted to go back and have more time to appreciate being there.

JM: What other things do you enjoy besides creating?

CHALEEN: I really cherish time spent with my girls. They are a ton of fun at this age, and just the biggest blessing I could ever imagine! I also enjoy decorating (and redecorating) my house. It gives me another excuse for buying more fabric!

JM: Anything else you would like to add?

CHALEEN:A huge thank you to my customers, who are (I think) just about the best out there. I always feel like I need to send out thank you notes to everyone who bids on my auctions, whether they win or not! =D Also, thank you to my friends and family who listen to me moan and complain and talk in circles when I can't get a design just right, feel overwhelmed, or when I try something new that I never should have attempted in the first place! Finally, a big thank you to JM for the opportunity for this interview. It's truly an honor!

Do you have a question that you are dying to ask Chaleen? Comment about something she said or designed? Post it here and she will answer it!

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Comments

Lori (*alligatorsoup*) | Sunday, April 23, 2006 8:29 AM | flag
Great interview Chaleen! Your bags are the best.

Pam (blacksheepdesigns) | Sunday, April 23, 2006 5:55 AM | flag
Beautiful bags - congrats on the feature! - Pam

Pam (sewgracious) | Saturday, April 22, 2006 4:39 PM | flag
Chaleen, I've always admired your wonderful creativity. You make such beautiful bags and have such great eye for fabric combinations! Congratulations on your Ebay success and your JM feature! :-)

oceanna | Tuesday, April 18, 2006 11:44 PM | flag
Beautiful bags, Chaleen! You have a great eye for color & design--I love your work!

Chaleen | Tuesday, April 18, 2006 7:03 PM | flag
Thanks SO much girls!! You are all amazing and I'm fortunate to have such support!

Shirley | Tuesday, April 18, 2006 3:59 PM | flag
Chaleen, I love the way you combine creativity with practicality. Your "stuff" is the best!

| Tuesday, April 18, 2006 2:41 PM | flag
I am a bag addict and have always been in love with Chaleen's stuff. I love the way she puts fbrics together. The presentation is always nice too. I just love looking at her items! woo-hoo! ~Summer

Jona | Tuesday, April 18, 2006 1:57 PM | flag
Chaleen, your bags are just over-the-top gorgeous!! How inspiring!

Cara | Tuesday, April 18, 2006 9:02 AM | flag
Chaleen- your bags are wonderful! They are made so well and you are so creative, I love waiting to see what you come up with next - Great article! Cara

Jamie | Tuesday, April 18, 2006 8:58 AM | flag
Chaleen, your bags are the best!!!

Some past Poshibilities Designs

To view past Designers of the Week
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