Kitschy creations

Terri Green Peterson

Courtesy Of terri green peterson

Need a sequined appliqué skull-and-crossbones for your hoodie? What about retro Barbie playing cards? Guatemalan Worry Dolls? Well, fourth-generation Chicoan Terri Green Peterson has created a one-stop destination for all your kitschy needs: Sacred Kitsch is a fun and funky resource for artists, designers, crafters and collectors, featuring everything from beads and unique charms to decorated craft paper and French tin tiles. Having worked as a health-care professional most of her life, Peterson now sells these creative wares over the Internet from her Cohasset home, which gives her time to make art and spend time with friends and her husband, Erik, and son, local actor Sean Green.

When did you start this venture?

A year and a half ago. I actually bought the site as an existing business. I went there as a customer initially. When I went to place an order I was unable to because the site was closed. We negotiated and I ended up buying it. I opened for business last May.

Who are your customers?

People from all over the world, interestingly enough. I get a lot of orders from designers and from people who love to create things for themselves and their friends. I think it’s mostly people who are interested in something that’s a little different from what they can find at their local craft store. They’re looking for materials for their art that are special. Something with a little more flavor.

Where do you get this stuff?

I’m all over the Web. I’ve traveled to bead shows (with limited success) … vintage places, thrift stores, old warehouses, from people who have traveled and brought stuff form different parts of the world. My husband and I travel to Mexico often, and I find wonderful pieces there. I love Mexico.

You make your own art as well.

Jewelry design is something that I’ve always done. I do a lot of mixed-media collage and papier mâché. I’m working on some giant papier mâché pieces. The one I’m the most interested in right now is a seated Indian elephant. He is made from recycled things. I love to turn trash into art.

What draws people to Kitsch?

I think mostly that it’s fun. Vintage and retro stuff has always appealed to a lot of us. I’ve always been drawn to items with a little history. I spend a lot of time hanging out in thrift stores and at estate sales. I would never in a million years have imagined opening a Web site, but it’s a good fit. I’ve never been into things that are particularly normal.

Can people pick up stuff locally?

Currently it’s all mail order. I do look forward to setting up a studio open to others. It would be a space where people could come and work. I have a lot of equipment and supplies and I’d like to have a cooperative space.