Watermelon Wishes and Sewspire founder Andrea Chapman, is passionate about creativity and supporting women in business. She taught herself how to sew and launched her first handmade business Watermelon Wishes in January of 2006 after the airline which her husband was employed for 20+ years announced it was closing its doors forever.
At the time, Andrea was a full-time mom, who desperately wanted to find a means to offset the loss of income while still being able to care for their children. The only logical solution, she supposed, was to start her own business.
A lot has changed since those early days when she set up shop in the family dining room and sold her handmade bags on eBay and at local craft fairs.
In 2011, Andrea took a huge leap of faith and moved Watermelon Wishes out of their home and into a commercial space in the quaint village of Middleburg, Virginia.
For five years, Watermelon Wishes operated as a unique retail model whereby Andrea used the back of the studio to create and fulfill her custom bag designs and the front to showcase a thoughtfully curated collection of handmade goods.
In October of 2015, as a means to give back to the wonderful world of handmade, Andrea launched an inspirational blog and YouTube channel dedicated to sewing instruction. The primary purpose of Sewspire, she shares, is to convey her enthusiasm for sewing and promote the key benefits of living a creative lifestyle. Creativity, Andrea believes, is the key to happiness!
In the summer of 2016, Andrea made the bitter sweet decision to close the retail studio and transition back into a private studio setting. The decision, she said, was multi-faceted; but, largely due to an extensive public works project that was anticipated to significantly reduce pedestrian traffic in the town of Middleburg for an extended period of time.
Andrea is currently focused on growing her Watermelon Wishes brand and Etsy shop as well as nurturing her ever-growing online sewing community and fulfilling her desire to mentor fellow handmade artisans via weekly live chats and collaborations with the Sewspire Patreon Community.