Artist Spotlight: Hidden Vale Farm

Artist Spotlight: Hidden Vale Farm

Dawn Wiltbank, Toledo, OH

Toledo, WA is Dawn Wiltbank’s most recent stop on a lifelong journey around the globe. She started life in a town in West Sussex, England, where she lived for 20 years. She emigrated to Australia, living in Sydney, then moved to Melbourne to teach in a university. When she decided to write a book, she came to the United States and eventually met her husband. The couple live on a spacious property in rural Toledo on the site of one of the first homesteads originating from a land grant in the area. Both are trained Master Beekeepers.

Dawn Wiltbank’s kitchen cupboards in her rural Toledo home are filled not with plastic containers of store-bought staples, but with Mason jars filled with homemade products, including jars of honey harvested from her own hives. “Mum taught us all how to cook,” she said. “Everything from scratch, that’s the way to do it.” Inundated with beeswax and struggling with dry skin, Dawn found that no store bought product made any lasting difference. So she started researching, and formulating, to make made what she needed from the best quality natural ingredients. After testing on herself and friends, she formed her skincare company — Hidden Vale Farm — featuring natural hand and foot creams, lip balms and other products. At the beginning Dawn had enough wax for her own use and the beginnings of her company. However, as the buzz about her products grew on social media and her Etsy shop, she turned to other Master Beekeepers as a sustainable supply of honeycomb.

Describe Your Work
All of Dawn's products are made with the best all natural, quality ingredients available. Nothing artificial is added, pure and it should be.

How did you get started in the crafts business?
Dawn's need for a good quality, all natural, skin moisturizer was not met with store bought products. She needed something that lasted and didn't need reapplying as soon as you wash your hands. So, she decided to start from scratch and formulate her own from her bee's beeswax.

How long have you been wholesaling?
Dawn has been wholesaling since August 2018

What are your top 3 marketing methods for reaching new buyers?
Dawn has a website, an Etsy Store, and runs regular advertising to attract new buyers.

What percentage of your business is Wholesale? Retail? Commission, etc.?
50% of Dawn's business is Wholesale, the other 50% is retail.

How has IndieMe helped your business?
IndieMe has opened a new avenue for Hidden Vale Farm's products.

What advice do you have for new craft artists?
For new craft artists, my advice is to believe in yourself, and your product. Make sure you produce the best product you can.

What advice do you have for new craft galleries?
For galleries, I would advise them to get to know their artists, their story, and why they made their craft. This will give you a better understanding of the reason the artist made the craft.

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