I would like to introduce you all to the ambitious Miss Wendy ‘Punkheart’ Martin. She’s the dreamer behind Punkheart Patches, an adorable brand of handmade patches and brooches. Her candy-colored badges are stitched up with lace and love and feminist power!
Image by Kristin Leigh
Anyway, I think her designs are just too cool for school. Don’t you? Let’s learn a little more…
Tell us about your artistic background. How did you get here?
I have a Bachelor of Fine Arts and went to school for Animation. I’ve always loved drawing and have a special fondness for hands-on creative outlets. Anything that I can make with my hands, I absolutely love. Photography, fashion, film, and illustration are what I love to do, and through my business I can do all of that! There’s never a time when I don’t have a creative project in the works. These days, if I’m not working on Punkheart Patches, I’m making a costume or working on a photoshoot.
What started Punkheart Patches?
I began experimenting with DIY projects in college (cutting up shirts, tie dye, etc.) and once I graduated I had more time to dedicate to those outlets. I taught myself how to use a sewing machine and started customizing jackets and vests for myself.
What inspired you to create patches?
Punk counterculture and feminism for sure!
How did a business bloom from your initial idea?
Initially, I just wanted to share my patches with people and find others who would enjoy them as much as I did. I came to the conclusion that an online shop would be a great way to extend my reach! Since then, I’ve collaborated and traded with other artists and DIYers, some who I’ve admired for years!
What’s your studio like?
Just a regular bedroom flooded with geekdom memorabilia, with a computer and an art table.
Do you/would you work with a team?
I work solo for now, but I LOVE collaborating and working with people. I would definitely work with a creative team if I could.
What’s your process like? Do you sketch, go shopping, eat a sandwich, etc.?
I like to write and doodle in old notebooks a lot. Usually I write down words and phrases to help me come up with ideas and/or make sketches of what I’d like to make. I’m constantly saving images onto my phone or tablet for visual inspiration. I’m never not brainstorming!
How do your trial and error runs affect the end result?
Usually if I try something and it’s not quite working halfway through, I create a new idea and make it work! Flaws create new ideas.
Do you have any thoughts on long-term business or large-scale production?
Definitely. I would love to expand and work on my small business full time. For now, I’m looking into participating in more festivals and connecting with other small businesses and bloggers.
Do you have other projects or ideas you want to pursue in the future?
There’s a lookbook idea I’ve been working on all year that I would like to see realized at some point.
What makes you most proud about your project?
I am most proud of the fact that I created all this myself. The idea, the research, the connections, and the products. Punkheart Patches is authentically me.