TWIN FALLS — For many small business owners, the past year has been backbreaking.
Numerous owners have been forced to adapt to try and stay afloat. But some courageous individuals took that chance to set up their own shop, like Twin Falls resident Ashlyn Weeks.
Weeks started her ceramics business, Ashlyn Weeks Pottery, in July of 2020. While Weeks is thrilled about her current position, it took a lot of work to get there.
Weeks started taking ceramic classes in high school and immediately found a passion.
“I think sitting down on a pottery wheel is one, very therapeutic but two, I just love it," said Weeks. "Just being able to see what my hands can create from mud, pretty much.”
She soon took her studies to BYU Idaho, focusing on both art and psychology. In her last semester of school, she ultimately decided that art was the career path choice.
After graduation, Weeks returned to Twin Falls and immediately began to set up a studio in her garage for her work. For nearly a year, she balanced her desire to do art and having a steady paying job for the school district. Shortly into the pandemic, Weeks lost her position with the district and felt it was the right time to fully commit to launching her own business.
“Having my own business really just drives me as a person to not only improve my artwork but just like be a member of the community and see where I can grow. I think I grow as a person as my business grows too, so that’s kind of where that inspiration lies too,” said Weeks.
Despite the economic climate at the time when she started her business, Weeks managed to do well and keep her dream alive.
“Luckily everything has to do with the online world," she said. "I mean, right now I sell stuff through Etsy which is kind of a creator's platform. I’m working on my own website, which is great, but luckily everything has been happening online. I can ship from the post office, ship from UPS, anywhere.”
She said she is thankful for the support she has received from her hometown to be able to keep doing what she loves.
Although she is in her garage, Weeks is very happy with the situation, but still one day hopes to open a storefront and even teach her passion to others.
“I would love to have an open studio for people to come experience what it’s like to come and play on a pottery wheel to make their own stuff and then see the finished product, and then they can obviously keep it,” she said.