About My Small Business
Creating Art for Sustainability
Metta Weaving is a handcrafted business located on the Kitsap Peninsula of Washington State. My name is Kahlia Chase and I am the owner and crafter of Metta Weaving.
How It All Started
Metta Weaving (previously known as Evergreen Bohemian) was manifested in 2013 as a hobby. I was working a hospitality job at a hotel where, to be honest, I was not living my full potential. I worked hard and I would say that I did my job very well, however it was not something that I saw myself doing for a long time. I didn’t know much in the way of crafting back then, spending most of my free time being outside.
That year, I was in a terrible car accident. I suffered from a severe head injury and some other injuries as well. I was terrified, thinking that I may actually die. The head injury completely changed my life. If you know what it is like for this to happen, I really feel for you.
I took about a week or so off work to heal, and when I tried to go back to work, I realized that this wasn’t an option. Not even lasting half way through my work shift, I went home to go hide under my blankets in a dark room to try and get away from my dizziness and headaches. I quit my job after a few weeks of calling out, realizing that I was not reliable at this point and needed to heal.
Months went by as a went to numerous doctors, still experiencing excruciating pain. I knew something was wrong, but I just kept getting the same answers. “Head injuries take months to heal, sometimes longer.” I tried massage and chiropractic, and then I started experiencing new pain. I made an appointment with a neurologist, and this is when things really changed for me.
I was told that I had a brain disorder, something call a Chiari Malformation. What happened was when I got into my accident, I started getting symptoms from my Chiari Malformation when I got into my accident(apparently this is not uncommon) and my neurologist recommended surgery.
For those of you who don’t know, a Chiari Malformation is, in short, when your skull does not form properly when you are born and your brain does not have room in the back of your head. This can cause spinal fluid blockage, pressure, muscle pain, back pain, etc. It depends on your situation. Unfortunately, I had most of the symptoms.
I was not having this. I recall taking the booklet he sent home with me and shoving it in a drawer. Brain surgery? NO WAY. I think I spent about a year and a half pretending that appointment never happened. Unfortunately, my symptoms got worse. The pressure in the back of my head was so unbearable, I had to take surgery as a consideration at this point. So January, 2018(5 year later) my partner stood by my side while I got my procedure done. I had my cerebellar tonsils cauterized, part of my skull taken off in the back of my head, and my C1 vertebrae partially removed.
It’s been a long recovery. A year and a half later, I still deal with muscle and nerve pain, however my head aches have mostly dissipated and I don’t have that horrible pressure in the back of my head. I has taken me a long time to realize, however I have learned that exercise is the best thing that I can do for myself. It keeps the pain minimal and it makes me feel like a completely different person.
The Beginning of Evergreen Bohemian
The first year after my accident was when I discovered my love for weaving. To pass the time, I picked up a few supplies and a macrame book, and I got to work. Before I knew it, I was on a whole new life path.
I was weaving so much and it was so therapeutic for me that within less than a year, I opened up an Etsy shop just to see what would happen. I didn’t expect much to be completely honest, I was just crafting so much that I didn’t know what to do with everything I was making! Once I made a few sales, I realized that this was something that would really give me a sense of fulfillment. The satisfaction from weaving and creating something special for people has out weighed any job I’ve ever had. The true inspiration from my work comes from the people I make things for.
So there I was, getting orders and staying busy enough to buy more supplies and think about the next piece of art I should make.
The Tree of Life Inspiration
Towards the beginning of my career, I had asked my dear friend Iron if he would be interested in doing an art trade with me(if you like nature photography and backpacking, go check his work out here), and he asked me to make him a tree dream catcher in trade of a beautiful photo I had been eyeing from his work.
It took me quite some time to figure this one out, for I hadn’t been doing macrame for very long. I learned how to make macrame leaves, and I went from there. It took me quite a while to figure out the concept for my tree. Eventually I figured it out, and even though that first one looks quite different from the pieces I create now, that was a jumping off point for my signature macrame tree of life wall hanging.
The Beginning of Metta Weaving
After surgery, a lot changed for me and my business. I took on a whole new concept, a fresh start if you will. In 2018, I changed the name of my business to Metta Weaving and joined partnership with a wonderful non profit organization.
Metta means loving-kindness. This is a Buddhism term that I feel really reflects the work that I do. I incorporate a lot of heart and soul into my work and I genuinely love working with people on a friendly basis. I believe in having a compassionate approach to life and for me, my business is a huge part of my life. Metta Weaving is part of who I am and I am constantly looking for ways to make people happy, fulfill their needs and of course, create new and meaningful pieces.
Eden Projects Partnership
Metta Weaving is partnered with Eden Reforestation Projects, a non profit organization that reduces extreme poverty and restores healthy forests by employing local villagers to plant millions of trees every year. With the destruction of healthy forest systems brings many different problems. Trees provide a habitat for animals, purifying water sources, control flooding and erosion and help to replenish the soil with nutrients needed for farming.
The benefits to planting trees is infinite for nature. Animal habitat is restored, local rainfall patterns are restored, water tables rise and water purity improves, flooding and soil erosion stop, soil quality improves, the list goes on. For humans, the benefits are also substantial. Extreme poverty is decreased, villagers that are at risk of slavery are reduced, farms are better stabilized, local economies grow and crop yields are increased.
I partnered with Eden Projects in September in 2018 because my love for nature inspired me to find non profit that would really benefit from my art. $2 of every single purchase is donated and $4 is donated from orders of $200 or more. This includes sales from festivals and markets! My goal is to donate as much money as possible to plant trees and provide work for villagers. Please go to Eden Projects under the About tab to learn more about the cause!
Humanity must work together to make the world a better place. As the saying goes, it takes a village.
My work is spiritually inspired and I like to create good vibes around the pieces that I create. I love making trees because each and every one can be unique and random. There is no pressure to make a tree look a certain way, because every single tree on the planet is different and beautiful. I also enjoy using gemstones in my work. In my free time I like to rock hound and collect minerals, so for me, working with stones is just an extension of who I am. Wire wrapping stones or weaving hemp around stones into earrings, bracelets and necklaces is something I like to do when I want to take a break from making decor.
My creations reflect my lifestyle choices. I love nature and I only use sustainable and animal friendly materials.
Metta Weaving uses natural fibers such as hemp and cotton rope. I also like to use copper when wire wrapping. Gemstones, glass and wood beads are essential materials in my creations. All creations are vegetarian and some are vegan. See individual listings for details.
What My Customers Means to Me
Each and every one of my customers is very important to me. As a small business, my customers are much more than just an order number to me. One of the best things about my work is that I get to work on on one with amazing clients.
Whether you are someone buying from my shop, someone who I am creating a custom order for, or someone who shares my creations on social media… I see you, I notice you and I appreciate you.
Thank you so much for taking an interest in my handmade business. I look forward to working with you in the future.
If you’d like to read more about, me, the artist herself, please read further!
About the Artist
Enjoying the Little Things
Road trip down to California
My name is Kahlia Chase. I am 27 and I am located in Washington State.
I have an enormous love to the outdoors. The inspiration that I get from nature is infinite. In my free time I enjoy rock hounding, backpacking, hiking, camping, swimming, exercise, travel, vegetarianism, plants, mountain biking, crafting, meditation and yoga. There is a lot more, I like to stay busy!
My art hobbies include macrame, wire wrapping, painting and any other thing I can manage to pick up in my free time. I like to learn new things constantly. Art is an amazing outlet and I encourage others to explore their artistic abilities.
My partner and I are converting a school bus into a tiny home right now. We will be moving into it within the next month or so. We plan on living in it full time and travelling as much as possible. Life is short, I don’t plan on wasting it! I will be able to “work from home” and craft while we travel. I am thankful to have a flexible work schedule to make this happen. The bus is a work of art! We have done a lot of wood work in our home and I am absolutely in love with it.
Ryan and I enjoy simple living! We have an active lifestyle and enjoy the little things. Finding a balance between work and play time is super important.
In January of 2018, I had brain surgery. Please read above if you haven’t already. I have a corrected brain disorder called a Chiari Malformation which has pushed me to be a better person, to stay healthy and to be a compassionate person. I have learned a lot and have a much more meaningful life because of my circumstances. I stay active mostly for pain management. It helps tremendously with nerve and muscle pain.
At the end of the day, I know that I have walked this path for growth. Sometimes the things we see as curses are actually gifts, we just may not see that in the moment. I have been given a chance at leading a healthy, meaningful life. Without suffering, I wouldn’t have my art or my truth.
Thanks for reading,