Callidora is a fictional character who lives in daydreams. She is an elegant, classic lady – sort of ageless. She is a robust, intelligent woman who likes to feel soft and pretty. Many of my creations are practical and can be worn for any occassion. Callidora appreciates beauty in all forms – petite, plus size, and all our various bits. Settle in for your Callidora moment and carry beautiful thoughts throughout your day.
I’m Terri Collins and I started Callidora’s in December 2007 as a little side business on Etsy.com. When choosing the name, I had such a hard time! I couldn’t settle whether I should think of something clever and punny, or maybe something catchy. I knew I didn’t want it to be any variation of my name or initials. My thoughts kept returning to notions of women from yesteryear. I went online to a baby name finder and searched for names meaning “beautiful”. Of course, I was inundated with Bellas and all forms of it. Then I saw “Callidora”. It’s Greek in origin and means “gift of beauty”. I thought it was perfect! That’s exactly what I try to create – gifts of beauty.
I’ve been sewing for over 20 years, having taken classes in my early teens. I didn’t do much with it then – maybe 2 projects a year. Once I’d married and started having children, sewing allowed me to make a small side income and stay home with my babies. In those days, before the internet, it was difficult to get a small business off the ground. I primarily did alterations and formals back then, and lots of baby clothes for my own kiddies!
Life goes on and our family grew, I had to go back to work, we moved back across country to Virginia where our roots are. As my children were going to school, I realized that I had to homeschool and not leave the fate of my children up to public schools. Since I had to quit in order to homeschool, my thoughts returned to sewing again for money. Now, with the internet, it is a lot easier to get my creations in front of other people. Since Callidora’s started, it has grown from a handbag-only shop into women’s clothing, hats, and lots of custom projects! You can view photos of my custom work in my Gallery.
I love to knit as well as sew, and have a fondness for foreign languages. I homeschool 3 of my 4 children, since my oldest is now in college. I’m active in my homeschool community of Richmond, VA. I teach co-op classes in various levels of math, Latin, English, and of course – sewing and Home Ec. I wholeheartedly believe in supporting local farms and promoting regional, natural eating and I buy as many products as possible from handcrafting artisans. I’m also a huge Star Trek fan and love to go to conventions with my boys 🙂 My wonderful husband has always been supporting my creative efforts throughout the years. I love him with all my heart.