Interview: Lively Ghosts

Welcome to October on Goddess Directory - a month full of celebrating our favorite spooky, scary, and (let's be honest) cute shops that embody the spirit of shopping small for Halloween instead of shopping at Spirit Halloween. Well, we do love a good Spirit Halloween, but not as much as we love supporting creative entrepreneurs and the business they put their blood, sweat, and tears into - vampire or otherwise. All month long we'll be featuring shops and makers who sell Halloween themed items, and don't forget to check out the ever-growing directory of Halloween shops here. I'd also urge you to scroll through the comments on this Instagram post to find many, many more.

Today's feature is on a shop that perfectly captures the creepy but cute ~aesthetic~. Lively Ghosts is stocked with pins, mugs, art prints, and more that all look like they belong in your chilly upstate manor where you're living to cut yourself off from the outside world. Given how much of a vibe it all is, it's surprising that Lindsay Kaye, the creator, didn't actually set out to create the brand. It all came about when she hit a stroke of luck with a DIY project that gained attention, but she's since proven that her shop is less about luck and more about her creativity and hard work turning it into a business. I found her story as fascinating as her products, and I'm so pleased to share it with you. Enjoy!

My pick: It has to be the Candy Corn Collar! It's honestly the perfect accessory for the season and you can't convince me otherwise.

Q: Let’s start from the beginning. Can you tell me a little bit about the process of starting your business? What made you want to do this and how did you turn your idea into a reality?

A: The creation of Lively Ghosts was, quite honestly, a beautiful yet completely unintentional adventure. In early Autumn of ’17, I had crafted what I call “a Pin Board”. A Pin Board, essentially, is an aesthetically pleasing framed piece of cork board with a velvet facade, which served as a format of showcasing my enamel pin collection. I had posted a picture to my personal socials as kind of a “hey friends, check out this DIY thing I made this weekend”, and sincerely didn’t think much of it. Sure enough, I woke up the next morning to an inbox full of messages from friends asking if I take commissions. So, I opened a shop solely for the ease of it, and expected it to be no more than a side hobby. I was working full time in the film industry, so I REALLY didn’t put much effort into the shop’s creation. As for the name Lively Ghosts, that was merely my username at the time! Over the course of the next year, though, Lively Ghosts most certainly became more than just a side hobby.

Q: Was there a moment when you felt like this was something that was going to take off and become a success for you?

A: I think from the start, I most definitely didn’t. I really hadn’t thought much of my Pin Boards when I first launched Lively Ghosts. Again, the foundation of Lively Ghosts stemmed from a random DIY project I had created for myself, and I had found it odd & humbling that my friends were so enthusiastic about it. Slowly, I started developing my brand and solidifying the overall tone of what it was that I wanted to create: dark art celebrating the macabre & all things spooky (in other words, things I’m passionate about). I came up with the idea of coffin shaped Pin Boards, and started creating them from scratch. They really didn’t catch on at all -- no one cared about them at the time, but I suppose deep down I just had a feeling that they would find their time to shine. I feel like when you create something you’re truly passionate about…you just know. I felt so vehemently enthusiastic about them.

Jump to modern day — I truly can’t keep those Coffin Pin Boards in stock. All of them are still handcrafted by me, and I release more than a hundred at a time. Incredibly, they always sell out in minutes flat. I say this often: I don’t think I’ll ever truly fathom the reality of it all (especially what I just wrote in the past few sentences)! To this day, I don’t think my encouragement stems from the success of any specific thing, but moreso my belief in its future success. Ultimately, you have to believe in yourself and your product for your shop to truly thrive.