Trappin' and Travelin' with Spifster
I had the wonderful opportunity to sit down with world renowned nail artist and globetrotting creative Spifster to talk about her art, her travels, and how believing in yourself can help you follow your dreams.
Q: I have had the privilege to watch your work go from being a cool hobby, to a fun side-hustle, to now being your successful bread and butter/ champagne and caviar gig. At what point did you realize you could make money doing what you love?
A: It was the support that I got from everyone around me. Originally I started this nail thing as a way to kick a terrible nail biting habit- but my designs were so unique everywhere I went, my nails were the topic of conversation; everywhere I went they would ask me,"Who did your nails?"
In terms of making money with my craft, I started off doing graphic design for parties and events, but I wasn’t happy with it because it wasn't relational. Graphic design, at least in the way I was doing it, wasn't a good way to showcase my creative talents because once the event was over, the flyer goes in the trash. I love doing nails because it has opened the door for me to present my art to the world. Some of my celebrity clients include: Taraji P Henson, Jennifer Hudson, Adrienne Bailon, Danielle Brooks, and Paul Mooney.
Q: Wow! It's a beautiful thing when you can make a living doing something that you love!
What inspired you to actually take that first step and put yourself out there?
A: Well like I said, a lot of it had to do with all the positive feedback and support that I received from those around me. Once I started designing nails full time, it was second nature. I never doubted for a second that if it would continually grow into something great. I literally saw myself doing this on a grand scale- and I was right!
Q: Yes you were! Now I understand you are out here designing clothing lines in foreign countries, making dope ass shower curtains and whatnot, tell me more!
A: Designing and creating is my passion. I have always wanted to showcase my work on a grand scale. I have been doing nails for 10 years and I felt like this was time for me to take my art to the next level.
My home decor line is called, "Decospiff" I have everything from clocks to pillows and duvets, to my famous shower curtains, I have it all baby! This is "Piff" for decorators: this is that heat for your crib. You don't have to go to Target or Home Goods you can come to me. Just because you have a smaller budget doesn't mean you can't be flyy- I can get you together on any budget!
Seeing my art in other peoples homes was amazing and empowering for me. Shortly after my home decor line had its debut, I was commissioned by Maaike + Co, an upscale clothing company in New Zealand, to design a line of clothing that would brighten up their collection. My collection is called, "YO!" and it features my signature bold print and clashing colors. You can check it out here.
Q: New Zealand though...AND YOU GOT PAID!? You are really out here doin ya thang! Tell me about your travels!
A: Its funny you say that, because for the most part, I get paid for all of my travel, BECAUSE I'M ALWAYS WORKING! I actually have never been on a REAL vacation as an adult!I have been to Aspen, Connecticut, New York, Texas, Miami, Los Angeles, Ohio, and British Columbia for various creative gigs.
Q: Tell me more about British Columbia, what creative projects were you working on there?
A: Believe it or no, I actually was teaching at a school! Back in 2016 I had the chance to run art workshops at Skeetcheesn Community School students in British Columbia. A lot of what I taught the kids was how I used art in my everyday life and how they could as well. It was an awesome experience.
I loved British Columbia. While there, I was truly able to explore- there are mountains everywhere, and the air is so beautiful and crisp. I remember being outside one morning having a smoke and a cougar randomly strolled past the house like it was nothin'. I absolutely have plans to go back!
Q: A cougar? You brave Chile! What are your future travel plans?
A: Well of course there is always the work trips. I will be doing a collab with a salon in Chicago for the Essence Festival in July and I am often between Miami, New York and California for creative gigs.
For the first time ever, I am planning a vacation that is NOT work related. The salon I work at, Salon Lokei, is celebrating our 8th year as a collective in the city of Chicago! We are having a big party at the shop on April 15th, but all the stylists and myself are going to Jamaica later this year as well!
Q: Jamaica is my happy place, you and your crew are really going to have a blast! What's next for the Spifster? Where do you see your brand in the next few years?
A: I see myself having collections with different brands and designers like Target. I see myself being marketed as a household brand. Eventually my brand will be on the level of Ikea: I will be your one stop destination for all things Spiff!
Q: You are determined and ambitious, I know you will meet your goals. Where can we check out your merchandise, art and book a nail appointment? SPIFF US, PLEASE!
A: Of course!
Q: Okay, great. The Flyy Fam will be sure to support you! Lastly, what would you say to someone who has some creative ideas and wants to take the next step but is afraid of the outcome?
A: Number one, do it. Do it and be consistent. Be Unique, be you. Never compromise. No matter what, don't quit. You will run into obstacles along the way that will shake you, but keep working at your craft. Work on it little by little each day, believe in your work and you will have no choice but to succeed!
Thank you so much for your time Spiff, I can't wait to get my Spiffy merch in the mail!
Click here to JOIN the FlyyFam!
Click here to FOLLOW ME on Facebook!
Click here to FOLLOW ME on Instagram!