Tolland resident Meryl Levesque, a first time small business owner, has always had a creative streak.
"I used to be a potter, and art has always been in the family," Levesque said. She is currently entering her second year of business as the owner of Unique Mosaics.
Levesque, who creates all of the merchandise sold by Unique Mosaics, said that the customer's input is always an essential step in making her artwork, which ranges from bird feeders and ornaments, to picture frames, mirrors and much more.
In fact, many of the services provided by Unique Mosaics have been informed by customer feedback.
For example, when Levesque took her work to local craft fairs and events, she noticed that her creations were always a big hit with young girls.
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So as a mother who had always dreaded putting together goodie bags for birthday parties, she took that feedback and created a birthday party package for her business, in which she brings materials (often with the birthday girl's favorite color included) and helps direct a craft project, after which each guest can bring home their hand-made mosaic.
Levesque has also expanded her "party project" service to girl scout troops trying to earn craft badges, and any other art enthusiasts who want to learn more about the craft.
"Every single customer has an individualized experience," she added. Whether Levesque is teaching her craft to groups or designing products for a customer, their preference for material, design and more are always a crucial part of her business method, she said.
But beyond providing for her customers, Levesque also said that she is enjoying the lifestyle of being a small business owner.
"I love setting my own hours, being able to create and design things on my own, and, if it makes other people happy, that's great," Levesque said. She also mentioned that the crafting community has been very welcoming.
"The crafters are wonderful, and we all share what we're doing," she said. "I think that's what made it successful for me this first year."
Levesque will be appearing at several events in the next few weeks. On Thursday, she will be selling her creations at "Holidays on Main" from 5 p.m. to 9 p.m. in Wethersfield at the Webb Barn. This Saturday, she will be at the Glastonbury Riverfront Community Center from 1 to 4 p.m. for the "Literacy through Reading" event, and on Saturday, Dec. 15 she will be at St. John's Church in Old Saybrook from 9 a.m. to 2 p.m.
For more information on Unique Mosaics, visit the business' website or call 860-208-4151.