Today we’d like to introduce you to Caia Diepenbrock.
Caia, let’s start with your story. We’d love to hear how you got started and how the journey has been so far.
I was raised by two full time artists, so I’ve been creating and surrounded by art my entire life. Even when I thought I wanted to pursue a “practical” career in psychology, I realized by wellbeing relied on creating art, so I went on to earn a degree in Studio Art from Bard College. My interests are pretty wide-ranging, so while I was there I studied painting, poetry, installation art and Spanish while working in Interior Design over the summers and as my first “real job” after graduating. Based on what I’m doing now, the most important class I took there was an experimental printmaking class. When the teacher prompted us to print on basically anything that would take ink, I gravitated towards clothing. I fell in love with the tactile process of carving the block, inking it up, and printing it on t-shirts I could give to my friends. I started selling them at the local craft fairs and in small shops, and since moving to Los Angeles I’ve continued building SpiralEyez Designs into a brand of “wearable art” in the form of jackets, skirts, dress shirts– still really anything that takes ink . It’s become a satisfying way to manifest all of my interests in creative direction, printmaking and textile design as a cohesive brand that ultimately serves my true love for people.
We’re always bombarded by how great it is to pursue your passion, etc – but we’ve spoken with enough people to know that it’s not always easy. Overall, would you say things have been easy for you?
Pursuing something creative is never a perfect ride. Overall, SpiralEyez has been a slow and steady build. I’ve had enough encouraging experiences and positive feedback to keep me going and feeling confident that people truly do love what I’m doing. That’s not to say I haven’t doubted myself, or haven’t been frustrated by the process. As an artist that just wants to make things all the time, it can be difficult to navigate all of the aspects of building a business and a brand, such as social media, marketing, and sales techniques – but the more I do it, the more I realize it’s just about actually doing it in the first place versus getting held back by anxieties about doing it “right”. No one really knows exactly how to do it anyways, so I might as well make my own rules!
So let’s switch gears a bit and go into the SpiralEyez Designs story. Tell us more about the business.
SpiralEyez came out of my love for printmaking, fashion, and open-mindedness. Using a process of traditional printmaking, I hand-carve textile designs out of linoleum blocks that I then hand-print onto quality vintage pieces that often already have a character of their own. I think of it as “Wearable Art” that celebrates individuality and your own one-of-a-kindness. I love working with people to create their very own, special custom piece that hopefully makes them feel truly at home in their own skin when they wear it. To “SpiralEyez Yourself” is to Become Your Universe – to be in tune with how your mindset can truly impact your daily reality and help you break away from self-doubt and the mundane. The Spiral is the shape of growth, rebirth, and the passing of time and energy. It is restorative, infinite, and exists in everything. SpiralEyez is about reminding yourself of the joy and wonder of being alive and truly YOU.
Has luck played a meaningful role in your life and business?
I believe more in a combination of serendipity and hard work than pure luck. I came to Los Angeles with an excited sense of ambition and big-picture dreaming, which I know I have in common with most people that move here. So many creative opportunities have come my way since being here, which I am grateful for. I’ve also worked really hard, and I’m a strong believer that the universe will give back to you what you put into it. Being confident in what you’re doing while always keeping an eye out for ways to grow and collaborate is what makes it possible to truly change your own reality. That said, I do have a romantic sense of “fate” when it feels like something out of your control has magically happened and lead to positive growth in your life. I try to listen to my intuition to know when to either continue pursuing something or leave it behind. In that way, even “bad luck” can ultimately be important in the process of figuring it all out.
- Custom embellishment: $75 and up
- Embellished Jackets $95-425
- T-shirts $30
- see website for more!
- Website: www.spiraleyez.com
- Email: firstname.lastname@example.org
- Instagram: @spiral_eyez
redhead w/ denim jacket under cliff: Maria Pisch
All other photos by me