Wednesday, December 15, 2010

#240 unofficial etsy featured seller - galstudio

#240 unofficial etsy featured seller - galstudio
Date joined etsy- 11/1/08
Sales to date - 537-Give us some basic info about you: name, where you live, kids/pets, favorite ice cream flavor, etc.

We are Carolle & Richard of Galstudio, together for 16 years and having the time of our lives making fun things here in Vancouver, Canada. Meeting in art school we discovered that we have a creative bent and work very well together. So, we made it our goal to have a business together. Dogs are in our plans. We love them. And, we both see a couple of furry quadrupeds joining us in the very near future. Carolle loves to cook & Richard loves to eat ... match made in heaven.

-Describe an average day in the life of “you”.

A typical day usually starts with Richard waking up at 6:30 AM. He makes coffee and starts working on the computer. And, Carolle then drags herself out of bed headed towards the coffee. By 9:00 AM we have a quick meeting to decide whether to jump into production or go check out fabric & supplies. If time permits, Richard is off on a bike ride. We package any orders for shipping destined for 2:00 PM. We discovered that it’s important to take a 45 minute lunch break. Because Carolle is way less grouchy & Richard cannot function without food. It’s definitely in our best interest! We rev up the production between 2 to 6. After dinner, we do prep work and more computer work. Richard writes another cycling post & Carolle will kick back and knit.

-Were you creative growing up/what did you enjoy doing?

Richard started model building & sketching as a young boy. Running & riding his bike was particularly fun too. Carolle learned to knit before she could spell her name. A natural. She tried her hands at everything; painting, model making & drawing Disney characters from story books.

-What made you want to start selling on etsy?

Carolle was off work and had time to knit and be creative. Looking for ways of self-employment, she soon discovered Etsy and it was a natural platform to start selling her products

-How long did it take for you to get your first sale on etsy?

At the beginning we had a few knitted items for sale. We did zero blogging, no publicity, not really knowing how to take the advantage of the Etsy community. It took seven months for the first Etsy sale.

-Top 5 favorite foods, tv shows, and bands?

Richard loves slow cooking homemade meals & anything Carolle will bake. And, Carolle loves cheese and more cheese preferably with wind, bread & popcorn. Top this up with plenty of reruns of Star Trek makes us happy.

-Is there anything you’d like to try your hand at doing? Knitting, baking, soap making, wood working. an instrument, etc.

We would love to try our hands at learning the history & craftmaking of: wine, beer, & cheese in Europe.
-What would you suggest to new etsy sellers to promote their shops?

Have patience because it requires huge amounts of it along with time & effort you will be rewarded. Sell something YOU would love to buy. It has to be of the highest quality that you can produce. There’s no excuse not to have great product shots. A picture is WORTH A THOUSAND WORDS! You must establish an online presence; Blog, Facebook, & Twitter. Tell your story and you product, people want to know who you are. And above all, remember that the customer is always right, so be willing to go the extra mile!

-3 etsy shops you just LOVE?

We love these Etsy shops:

Yokoo
Fosterweld
Grimm

-One year from now...

We see ourselves in a larger space. Broadening our product line to include children caps & more diverse range of inner tube items. Have our products in more local stores as well as increasing our Etsy sales exponentially. We’re excited and grateful to be able to work and better ourselves while designing products that people enjoy!


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Have an etsy shop with over 300 sales and want to be a featured seller? Contact me at phletcher@gmail.com
As always, thanks for reading :)

Tuesday, December 14, 2010

#239 unofficial etsy featured seller - JulieMeyer

#239 unofficial etsy featured seller - JulieMeyer
Date joined etsy- 5/28/08
Sales to date - 1809
-Give us some basic info about you: name, where you live, kids/pets, favorite ice cream flavor, etc.

My name, like my shop, is Julie. I live and work in a 90 year old bungalow in South Minneapolis, just a few blocks from the Mississippi river. My husband and I have 3 children – 1 in middle school, 1 in elementary school and 1 preschooler. The kid’s make my days long, but the years are flying by!

-Describe an average day in life of "you".

Unlike most creative types, I’m a morning person. My ideal day starts very early, usually sometime between 5-6am. I love tip-toeing around with my coffee cup in one hand while I sort through fabric or jump online with the other before everyone gets up. I’ll make a list of what needs to get cut and sewn that day, prep my fabrics, and then it’s time to get my middle son up and on the bus by 7am. I have an hour to pack orders and respond to requests, and then I spend an hour with my oldest before he’s off to school. My youngest loves her sleep. Most days she’ll sleep until 10:30am, giving me time to get a bit more work done. Once she’s up, it’s all about her and getting stuff done around the house. Its regular household stuff the rest of the day – errands, homework, play dates, dinner and dishes. I’ll usually grab a couple more hours of work before I crash for the night.

-Were you creative growing up/what did you enjoy doing?

Growing up my favorite book was #11, Make and Do, in the Children’s Encyclopedia set my parents had, circa 1978. I’m pretty sure I made every craft in that book for Christmas presents, using paper bags, paper clips, lots and lots of scotch tape, silver glitter, tissue boxes and wax paper. I was certain they would be treasured heirloom pieces! Math was my least favorite class.

What made you want to start selling on etsy?

I had a great part-time job doing graphic design work for a small local shop 3 years ago. I came across Etsy about the same time this company was closing. I spent a few weeks researching Etsy and was inspired by the Quit Your Day Job’ articles. Fortunately my husband’s income pays for the majority of our household bills, but we still needed my income to make ends meet, so I opened my shop 2 ½ years ago.

-How long did it take for you to get your first sale on etsy?

When I started my shop I knew I had a short time to make it work before I would need to look elsewhere for an income. I spent the first couple of months on Etsy studying everything I could, and absorbing all the advice successful shops were sharing. It didn’t take long to get those first precious sales. It took a few months to get consistent sales and to realize that it could be a viable income.

-Top 5 favorite foods, tv shows, and bands?

Coffee – Beer – Thai Food– Grilled Pizza – Desserts
I’ll watch anything on Bravo – it’s my guilty pleasure!
I generally listen to talk radio, but for music, I’m currently loving the Avett Bros. I’ve loved U2 since they released War and could listen to Nirvana Unplugged all day long.

-Is there anything you'd like to try your hand at doing? Knitting, baking, soap making, wood working, an instrument, etc.

When I first started selling on Etsy, I was intrigued by all the handmade soaps. I could click around in soap shops all day long and often would make my husband ‘look-look’, until we decided to get some supplies and make a few batches. We gave a lot away and simply haven’t made the time to make another batch. I learned it takes a lot more essential and fragrance oils than we were using and that you need more than one scent to make others come out. I’d love to make a few more batches to see if we can come up with some nicer scents than what we produced!

-What would you suggest to new etsy sellers to promote their shops?

The best advice I found on Etsy is to list every day and if you don’t have new items, give yourself a daily budget for renewing. Once I started doing this, consistent sales started flowing in. I haven’t had time to blog or twitter, but I’d love to get more involved with marketing via Facebook in the next year. Making Treasuries are another great way to discover cool things and get discovered.

-3 etsy shops you just LOVE?

LoranScruggs – she makes the coolest upcycled items from bottle caps and recycled metal.
HideNSeek - love the style of her work and have one of her prints hanging in our living room.
SewSweetStitches – I think her work is stunning!

-One year from now...

My youngest will be getting ready for school, and I can plan for days that include 6 hours of un-interrupted work giving me the ability to turn it off when the house fills back up in the afternoon.



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Have an etsy shop with over 300 sales and want to be a featured seller? Contact me at phletcher@gmail.com
As always, thanks for reading :)

Friday, December 3, 2010

#238 unofficial etsy featured seller - psitsinthedetails

#238 unofficial etsy featured seller - psitsinthedetails
Date joined etsy- 7/14/08
Sales to date - 529-Give us some basic info about you: name, where you live, kids/pets, favorite ice cream flavor, etc.

Hi! My name is Patty Schaffer. I live in a rural area about 15 minutes north of Allentown, Pa. I am happily married to my high school crush, Todd, for 16 years and we have two children, Sarah, 11, and Ben, 8. Our family also includes our chocolate lab, Sophie, two fire belly toads, Spotty and Hot Tamale, and an African dwarf frog named Toga.
I love ‘eye candy’ so I have tons of magazines and idea books stacked all over the place. I am an avid reader. I adore flowers and dream of having huge gardens in my yard some day. I am known by my family as Paparazzi Patty because I take so many pictures at our gatherings (they don’t complain, though, because I make family albums for gifts at Christmas!). My favorite flavor ice cream is vanilla and occasionally I like to top it off with some hot caramel.

-Describe an average day in life of "you".

I would say my ‘average day’ depends on the time of the year. I am a stay at home mom so my kid’s schedule dictates my schedule. During the school year I get them on the bus in the morning, then I spend my day running errands, taking care of household things or, my favorite part, creating items and working for my Etsy store (I am grateful for the flexibility that working from home allows). It seems like the afternoon bus stop pick-up time rolls around very fast and once again the kids are home. The next few hours revolve around homework, supper and family time. After my kids go to bed I head back to my art table or computer for more creative time.

-Were you creative growing up/what did you enjoy doing?

I would say I was creative growing up. My teachers in elementary school had me help decorate the bulletin boards in the classroom. I made countless drawings for my grandparents (who thoughtfully saved them) and I remember loving to do paint-by-number paintings. I think I even made a complete nativity scene out of a tissue box, toilet paper rolls and tissues. It seems like all the crayons, paper and drawing of my youth was leading me somewhere because I went to college and graduated with a degree in graphic design.

-What made you want to start selling on etsy?

I was looking for a way to be a stay at home mom and have a creative outlet. Earning some money along the way was a bonus. I came across Etsy about two years ago and thought it was a brilliant idea. I have to confess that I am now addicted to the site.

-How long did it take for you to get your first sale on etsy?

I had my first sale about an hour after I listed my first items. I have a funny little story about that..... MasterCard had just come out with the ‘priceless’ commercials around that time. I listed some items, stepped away to eat supper, and then came back to my computer to check things out. I saw I had made a sale and I was so excited that I pushed back from the desk while yelling “Yahoo!” or something along those lines and I ran over my toe with the wheel of my chair. My husband joked: “Listing an item on Etsy: 20 cents. First sale: $5.00. Trip to emergency room for broken toe resulting from sale: $1,000. Final sale: -$994.80.” (My toe was fine, by the way – no ER trip required!)
-Top 5 favorite foods, tv shows, and bands?

Favorite foods.... mushroom pizza dipped in ranch dressing, lobster tail, brownies, Chinese food, homemade stuffing
Favorite TV shows..... CSI, Oprah, Spongebob Squarepants, Cake Boss, Little House on the Prairie (even though it is no longer on)
Favorite bands..... Linkin Park, Nickelback, Maroon 5, OneRepublic, Train (and I also love 80’s music)

-Is there anything you'd like to try your hand at doing? Knitting, baking, soap making, wood working, an instrument, etc.

I often joke that I’d like to make duplicates of myself so I can do more. Of course I would need the Housewife Patty and the Mom Patty and the Etsy Store Owner Patty, but I would love to have Pattys to try jewelry making, crocheting and knitting, needle felting, and cake decorating. Just a few more of me would do the trick!

-What would you suggest to new etsy sellers to promote their shops?

This is usually always said in every interview, but I agree totally: Have great photographs.... there are so many tutorials out there to help you.
The most important thing I can suggest to new sellers is: you get out what you put in. I can tell when I am more active (making and listing new products) because my views and sales go up. If you list a few things and then sit back to wait and watch not much will happen. This is your business. Be active. Constantly tweek things to improve your shop. For example, rearrange items using the 'custom' option so your store is more visually appealing. Maybe you can group things by color in a row. Make sure you have all your store information filled out in the the profile and policies sections. Add your personality to descriptions in your listings. Renew and list often. The name of my store is 'P.S. it's in the details' and I truly believe that the little details make all the difference.

-3 etsy shops you just LOVE?

Danita Art - I love how she offers a variety of items but you can tell it’s ‘hers’ right away. I have several of her prints and jewelry pieces.
Babes in a Blanket - Leann makes beautiful crocheted items, including scarves– I have quite a few of them!
Sea Pinks - One word: ADORABLE!!!!!

-One year from now...

I hope to be better organized with my plans for upcoming seasons and for my business in general. I am usually a fly-by-the-seat-of-my-pants kind of girl and I would love to be more goal-oriented with my business. I also want to approach brick and mortar shops in the upcoming year to try to get my items sold locally.
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Have an etsy shop with over 300 sales and want to be a featured seller? Contact me at phletcher@gmail.com
As always, thanks for reading :)

Wednesday, December 1, 2010

#237 unofficial etsy featured seller - LuLusWoobies

#237 unofficial etsy featured seller - LuLusWoobies
Date joined etsy- 10/24/06
Sales to date - 1531-Give us some basic info about you: name, where you live, kids/pets, favorite ice cream flavor, etc.

I’m Tobie and my Etsy shop is LuLu’s Woobies.
I’ve lived in Southern California all my life, but just moved to Las Vegas 7 months ago (and love it!).
I share my space with my husband Brad, two crazy, genius girls: Sofie,8 and Tallulah,5, and my brother PeeWee (a Great Dane), two terriers Vinnie & Petey and a sulky little cat who hides in the laundry room.

-Describe an average day in life of "you".

I’m not a morning person at all, but still get up early with the family. I suck down a pot of coffee, fumble through making breakfasts and packing lunch and shuffling off to school. Nothing actually really gets accomplished until after noon. I terrorize the dogs a bit, get cleaned up and then make myself to get to work.

My typical work day is organized chaos. I’m happiest when I’m doing many things at once. There are always new projects and piles of fabric and yarn and needles and orders on my work table and desk at any given time. I sort of hop from task to task and then end up done within a surprising few hours. When school is out, I’ll run to the post office and then it’s pretty much family time for the rest of the day. We try to reserve weekends for fun and dates.

-Were you creative growing up/what did you enjoy doing?

I had a very imaginative childhood with my 3 sisters. We definitely lived in a very strange little make believe world most of the time. I picked up sewing and crochet when I was about 10 or 11 and everything I made was a gigantic mess. I’ve gotten much better in my old age!

My dad was the original handcrafter in our family. He built the home I grew up in, the bedroom I slept in. There wasn’t anything that he couldn’t do if he put his mind and hands to it, and he never gave up. I love to think that I got my handy-ness from him.


-What made you want to start selling on etsy?

Etsy was still very young when I started selling on the site. It was a very likeable place, personable, fun and friendly. It was a really refreshing to sell on Etsy compared to other sites, and still is. I couldn’t resist it’s charms.

-How long did it take for you to get your first sale on etsy?

6 days

-Top 5 favorite foods, tv shows, and bands?

I love anything with cheese and salt. I love coffee and beer.
I don’t watch too much TV, but when there’s time I enjoy Project Runway, Survivor, cooking shows and any program about the universe.
My favorite band is Radiohead, my girls love P!nk and Lady GaGa, my husband is into the 80’s and Vampire Weekend, so we have an interesting mix of music.

-Is there anything you'd like to try your hand at doing?

I’m planning on picking up woodburning very soon! The new tool has been on my desk for a month now.

-What would you suggest to new etsy sellers to promote their shops?

I’m a pretty quiet seller. As far as promotion goes, I could be a terrible example for others.

BUT, I’ve learned that taking custom requests is essential to broadening your horizon and getting out of the comfort zone. I’ve met some amazing people, repeat customers and made some wonderful friends this way AND discovered best selling items through other’s wants. The word of mouth referrals from custom request sales make for valuable shop promotion.

-3 etsy shops you just LOVE?

I’m a big fan of ashleyg (since my beginning on Etsy) and have a few of her prints in our home.

The best service I’ve EVER received along with beautiful product was from idreamicanfly.etsy.com.

I admire greatly WrenWillow’s beautiful product, images and happy upbeat style.

Also, any shop that sells ridiculous dog and cat apparel is my favorite.

-One year from now...

...I’ll be creating like mad and possibly have my enormous to-do list half way tackled. I’ll have the house all to myself for a HUGE chunk of the day because both girls will be in school fulltime. I’ll probable be found wandering around fabric shops and Target talking to myself like a crazy person because my little people will be gone.

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Have an etsy shop with over 300 sales and want to be a featured seller? Contact me at phletcher@gmail.com
As always, thanks for reading :)

Tuesday, November 30, 2010

#236 unofficial etsy featured seller - DIYFluffies

#236 unofficial etsy featured seller - DIYFluffies
Date joined etsy- 4/14/08
Sales to date - 867-Give us some basic info about you: name, where you live, kids/pets, favorite ice cream flavor, etc.

My name is Mariska Vos-Bolman, I live in the Netherlands. I have two sons one 2 year old and a 3 month old baby. I love to create plush toys. I used to work in the game industry as a 3d modeller. I started my company Fluffels two years ago.I started my first etsy shop mariska.etsy.com. A few month after starting Fluffels I started to create patterns from my soft toys and set up the shop diyfluffies.etsy.com

-Describe an average day in life of "you".

During the day I take care of my two boys. When I have a bit of time during the day I check my emails, send the pdf patterns to buyers. In the evening I have about 1-2 hours to do some design work, stuff animals or make necklaces for my other etsy shop. I get to bed around 22.00 because my youngest still wakes up during the night. So not a lot of time to create new patterns these days, but I know that will change when the kids get older.

-Were you creative growing up/what did you enjoy doing?

Yes I was very creative. I was always drawing, painting, doing origami and sculpting with clay.

-What made you want to start selling on etsy?

I just bought a sewingmachine to make some things for my home. I made a plush monster and thought it would be nice to see if it would sell and it did! I also have a etsy shop together with my mom called fabrickitchen.etsy.com Which she does most of the work for. I help her with the technical things, like updating the shop, creating the banners and making the photo's.

-How long did it take for you to get your first sale on etsy?
A few days in my mariska.etsy.com shop, where I sell soft toys and jewelry. After that I started diyfluffies.etsy.com which is a much more successful shop.

-Top 5 favorite foods, tv shows, and bands?

Foods: chocolate, chicken adobo, sauerkraut, soup, risotto
Tv shows: Supernatural, medium, greys anatomy, eastwick, project runway
Bands: Pff I just couldn't choose, the music I listened to depends on my mood. I like bjork, coldplay, muse, amy winehouse, and a lot more :)

-Is there anything you'd like to try your hand at doing? Knitting, baking, soap making, wood working, an instrument, etc.

Yes I would like to do some more crochet, which I started two years ago, but didn't had much time for yet.
I would love to learn Pottery baking to. Never tried it but it seems something fun to do.

-What would you suggest to new etsy sellers to promote their shops?

Try to get featured on blogs :) That always seems to bump my sales a lot. I also have a facebook page, twitter and a blog that I should update more often. Blog can work really well, but you must spend more time updating it then I do.

-3 etsy shops you just LOVE?

feltmeupdesigns so cute! I love her little birds!
DogboneArt Cute designs! Great clothes for kids.
jewelsvine I have one of here necklaces, such beautiful work!

-One year from now...

I hope to have more pdf patterns in my shop, and maybe some for a pattern book. I hope my baby will sleep through the night soon so I have some more time to make new patterns.
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Have an etsy shop with over 300 sales and want to be a featured seller? Contact me at phletcher@gmail.com
As always, thanks for reading :)

Monday, November 29, 2010

#235 unofficial etsy featured seller - hushmouse

#235 unofficial etsy featured seller - hushmouse
Date joined etsy- 07/30/06
Sales to date - 362-Give us some basic info about you: name, where you live, kids/pets, favorite ice cream flavor, etc.

Hi, my name is Maggie Hurley. I've been calling Berkeley, CA home for the past 4 years now. I live and work in my sunny studio, whipping up plush creatures and whimsical paintings whenever I have a chance. I have one wonderful kitty, Miette, who likes to help when she can (which usually consists of her running off with a spool of thread to unravel around the house).

-Describe an average day in life of "you".

I used to work in the corporate world where I had to be in the office between 7:30am - 8am. I left that job a little over a year ago to pursue my art, and now enjoy waking up closer to 9:30am or 10am. I stumble downstairs, make a cup of coffee, and check my email to see if any new orders have popped up overnight (which is always good news!). After coffee, I decide whether it's going to be a painting day, a sewing day, or a get-the-business-stuff-done day. Around the holidays, there seem to be more sewing days. I venture back up to the studio, put on some music or NPR and get to work. At some point, I'll stop to eat, or go walk around the block. Some days I'll work til midnight or 1am, other days, I'll stop at a normal hour, go for a walk for some inspiration, or hang out with my neighbors (who have a bunch of chickens, a couple dogs, a couple rheas, and yes, this is all in Berkeley).

-Were you creative growing up/what did you enjoy doing?

I think my artistic career started as a little kid. My mom told me I used to run down the hall with bunch of crayons in my hand, leaving streaks of colored wax along the walls as I went. I taught myself to paint as a kid by looking at Brian Froud's fairy paintings. I also went through an origami phase. I've liked creating things for as long as I could remember.

-What made you want to start selling on etsy?

A close friend of mine started selling stuff on Etsy when it was just getting started. I'd been struggling with the idea of approaching a gallery or store to get my work out - the whole process is so intimidating. My friend had some success on Etsy selling prints, so I thought I'd give it a shot. I'm so glad I did!

-How long did it take for you to get your first sale on etsy?

It took a few months. I didn't really put much effort into it at first, but once I started listing more regularly, things really took off.
-Top 5 favorite foods, tv shows, and bands?

Foods: cereal (I kind of live off of it), blueberries, quiche, sushi, anything pumpkin

TV Shows: Community, The Daily Show, The Colbert Report, Lie to Me, Chuck (I really love any show with a female lead that can kick some serious @ss)

Bands*: Cee-lo/Gnarles Barkley, Florence + the Machine, Sarah Blasko, Yann Tiersen, Mirah
* these change daily

-Is there anything you'd like to try your hand at doing? Knitting, baking, soap making, wood working, an instrument, etc.

Oh wow, there's so much I'd like to try. I have my hands in so many different mediums that I'm kind of reticent to pick up many more. I kind of have this secret wish that I was a ninja, so taking some sort of martial arts class would be pretty fantastic. I've never worked with encaustic/wax and would like to explore that a bit. I'm too much of a mad scientist for baking, but I make crazy wonderful pancakes (last batch: oatmeal/pumpkin/walnut/nutmeg/curry/chocolate - yeah, sounds kind of insane, but you should try it out)!

-What would you suggest to new etsy sellers to promote their shops?

Well, I have a blog, facebook page, and twitter that I've used to promote my shop, which is definitely useful. I think finding other blogs that relate to your work for advertising is helpful. For example, my shop is packed to the brim with owls, so advertising on myowlbarn.com has brought tons of people my way. I've been participating in a lot of local craft shows and I always encourage people to take a card with my website on it. Word of mouth is also helpful.

-3 etsy shops you just LOVE?

love love love Marmee Craft. Her paintings are gorgeous and I've found wonderful music on her blog

Scabby Robot - gorgeous bags and wallets

Field Day
- one day I will buy one of those blue jumpers...

-One year from now...

I have this idea to open a workshop/boutique/class teaching space. It will happen.... I am determined!

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Have an etsy shop with over 300 sales and want to be a featured seller? Contact me at phletcher@gmail.com
As always, thanks for reading :)

Friday, November 26, 2010

#234 unofficial etsy featured seller - plastique

#234 unofficial etsy featured seller - plastique
Date joined etsy- 07/16/08
Sales to date - 2087-Give us some basic info about you: name, where you live, kids/pets, favorite ice cream flavor, etc.

name: jennifer murse. everyone, and i mean EVERYONE, shortens it to jen without even asking. so really i guess i'm "jen murse"
location: los angeles, ca
kids: nope
pets: nope.... no room. i want a dog one day though!
ice cream: tiramisu gelato OR back to basics cookies and cream
fave color combos: grey and pink
fave #: 3

-Describe an average day in life of "you".

well, my day is usually far too long. i have a full time job and plastique* is my "side" business except that it's taken over my life. so basically i get up around 7:45am (sometimes i snooze til 8 and then i'm slightly panicked). get to work around 9:10. work til 6-ish as a web designer. that in and of itself can be very tiring depending on how difficult the client wants to be. i design the front end of websites, mobile apps, etc. it's fun but it can be a lot of hard work. i get home around 7pm and futz around on the internet for a moment. if i feel compelled i'll hit the gym and by the time that's all said and done it's like 8:30. i start working on plastique* work while my boyfriend makes dinner (he's awesome like that!). i'll do anything and everything from make jewelry, answer emails, post new items, shoot photos, or start designing new ideas. if it's a night where i'm packing orders i'll do that for at least an hour or two. typically around 1am i start to panic that i need to sleep but realize i have a bit more work to do. and by 2ish i'm in bed. wash, rinse, repeat. oh and did i mention coffee? i drink a lot of coffee.

-Were you creative growing up/what did you enjoy doing?

when i was a little kid i used to do a lot of art contests. i didn't really think much of it but i was always doing art contests. somewhere along the way thought i got sidetracked with my love of cash registers and forms. i used to LOVE creating forms for my parents to fill out. and i used to love playing with my cash register. so when i got older and went to college i thought that my love of creating and filling out forms coupled with my love of cash registers meant i liked "business." i also loved movies so i thought, movies and business equals wanting to be a movie producer and work on the business side of films. so i went to USC for business and film and along the way realized that wasn't for me. so when i graduated i went to art school for graphic design and started my career in design. i should have realized that my love for making forms actually meant i liked grids and that's really design. i totally got sidetracked from my true passions as a little kid!

-What made you want to start selling on etsy?

one day i was at a store and i saw a plastic ring. so months later i started getting the itch to make my own. i wanted to make the inverted diamond ring out of plastic. i had no idea how i'd do it so i searched for laser cut plastic. i found a place that would do it for me easily and my whole world opened up. i still remember that day. i was literally freaking out over the possibilities. i didn't know where to start. so i just started trying out stuff. i cut a few pieces of plastic and with my extras i thought i might as well post them on etsy. people liked them and as i started making more designs for myself i posted the extras on etsy. i saw the potential so i started making more designs and then in more quantity and the rest is history.

-How long did it take for you to get your first sale on etsy?

i don't recall exactly but i'm sure it took a few weeks. it was definitely not right away. but i was ok with that because i wasn't in it for any kind of profit, recognition, etc. i didn't even have a "brand" name at the time. it was just me posting my extra pieces.

-Top 5 favorite foods, tv shows, and bands?

5 foods: sushi, pizza, indian curries, all chinese food, kobe beef sliders from barclay prime in philly
5 tv shows: mad men, dexter, and seinfeld (even if it is off the air)
5 bands: i LOVE music so much that it's too hard to pick fave bands. but if i had to choose one it'd be radiohead. and since i love electronica/dance music my fave remixer is fred falke.

-Is there anything you'd like to try your hand at doing? Knitting, baking, soap making, wood working, an instrument, etc.

i can't sew and i've always wanted to learn. i also want to learn more about working with metals for jewelry. i took a class in silversmithing jewelry and it's hard! i loved it but it's quite hard on the hands. i'd love to get into it more. make molds and do casting. i also want to get into letterpress. i love the texture of letterpress and i think it's a great art that so few use anymore. i once tried to learn the guitar and it was not a success. i think i love music but i'm not musically inclined.

-What would you suggest to new etsy sellers to promote their shops?

i am noticing a very big trend in making treasuries. i've read on "etsy success" stories that people make treasuries i guess because it gets their shop out there when they message all the people they put in their treasury but also if their treasury gets picked for the front page, their shop is listed to i believe. i don't quite know all the inner workings of this promotional method but it seems to be something a lot of people do. i for one don't make treasuries. you read my average day. i have no time! i do scour etsy a lot to see what's out there and i buy a lot of stuff. but i don't make treasuries. i appreciate those that make them and put me in them! i think the best way to promote your shop is with blogs. there are some very large key blogs out there in the design world that can really boost your sales if you get picked up for a little blurb on them. i noticed that sales skyrocketed when i got onto blogs. and then of course make a facebook page and a twitter account. you need to employ social networking as best you can. get your friends to tweet about your stuff and "like" your page. slowly it will spread. there was no twitter when i started my shop. wow, that makes me sound old or something even though i'm not. "back when there was no twitter.... we had to do things the old fashioned way...." haha but seriously, twitter is a godsend to small businesses. it's free PR for yourself if you use it properly.

-3 etsy shops you just LOVE?

machajewelry - macha jewelry is SO GORGEOUS. pricey, but gorgeous. i love the raw look and feel to it. i have 2 of her rings.

melaniefavreau - melanie favreau's stuff is just so fun yet clean. in some ways i see it as what i'd be doing if i was using pure silver. i own two of her pieces as well.

boygirlparty - susie's characters are so cute i love them all! and she's around my age and lives in southern california so i aspire to her level of creativity. she does all kinds of art shows and she's just a fabulous artist. i check back to her store a lot.

-One year from now...

well, in february i'll be showing my jewelry at POOL at the fashion tradeshow MAGIC. so that will be my make it or break it moment i think. if it goes well and i am able to pick up a lot more wholesale accounts i might just quit my fulltime job and do this for awhile. there's a good chance i'm going to be moving to NYC next year and if i do that i kind of want to go back to grad school for a masters in packaging design. so a year from now i foresee a lot of changes in my life. i'll also be 30 so it's kind of that BIG year. i'm excited!


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Have an etsy shop with over 300 sales and want to be a featured seller? Contact me at phletcher@gmail.com
As always, thanks for reading :)

Wednesday, November 24, 2010

#233 unofficial etsy featured seller - dinosaurtoes

#233 unofficial etsy featured seller - dinosaurtoes
Date joined etsy- 08/4/07
Sales to date - 806-Give us some basic info about you: name, where you live, kids/pets, favorite ice cream flavor, etc.

my name is danielle and i live in a rural area outside of lynchburg, va with my husband chris and our baby, flojo the parrot. i'm constantly trying to talk my husband into moving to san francisco, or at the very least, charlottesville, va, but for now we'll stay here on a farm that's been in his family since the early 1900's. my favorite ice cream flavor is black cherry or cotton candy, but i have to admit, i'm not a huge fan of ice cream; if i'm going to eat something sweet, i'd much rather have donuts!

-Describe an average day in life of "you".

my alarm goes off at 7:40, and i pry myself out of bed a few minutes later. the first thing i do once i'm out of bed is wake up flojo. we call chris at work to say good morning (yes, flojo like to involved in the conversation, too), open the curtains and look at the birds outside, then check email and etsy. side note, dinosaur toes, the shop name, is flojo's nickname. after breakfast, i get to work making things, packaging orders, taking pictures and/or adjusting pictures. if it's a busy day, i sometimes forget to eat lunch! then in the afternoon, flojo usually takes a nap snuggled against me and i do a post on my blog and get caught up reading friends' blogs. once chris gets home from work, aside from listing an item or two, i'm pretty much finished working so we can spend time together (which usually involves eating since we're food junkies).

-Were you creative growing up/what did you enjoy doing?

yes, i was very creative growing up. i loved painting and making things with supplies i could find outside. one summer when i was 10 and my brother was 5, we decided that we were going to make walking sticks with carved designs, then go around the neighborhood trying to sell them. we actually sold a few, and when you're that age, $15 makes you feel pretty rich! i think that's when i first decided that i wanted to do something creative for a career.
-What made you want to start selling on etsy?

i actually never thought i'd have as many sales as i do or that this could become my job, i just figured if i could make a few dollars, i could justify buying new supplies!

-How long did it take for you to get your first sale on etsy?

less than a week after i listed my first item, i had a sale. i couldn't believe it, but from then on, i was hooked!

-Top 5 favorite foods, tv shows, and bands?

wow, it's pretty difficult to pick just five foods, but here they are: any sort of pasta with alfredo sauce, brick oven cheese pizza, baked potatoes, chocolate covered blueberries, philly cheesesteaks.
top five tv shows: seinfeld (reruns), the big bang theory, the shield (on dvd), anything regarding WWII on the history channel, true blood.
top five bands: woods, karl blau, little dragon, the horrors, still corners

-Is there anything you'd like to try your hand at doing? Knitting, baking, soap making, wood working, an instrument, etc.

i'm always looking for new mediums, processes, skills, etc. i do some sewing, although i can get lazy about it, and i've made some simple pieces of clothing from my own patterns, but i'd really like to have the time to make more clothing for myself with better patterns and fabrics. i've also always really, really wanted to work with porcelain and cast my own molds for porcelain figurines.
-What would you suggest to new etsy sellers to promote their shops?

first, and most importantly, i would say to get comfortable with your camera and be sure your pictures are clear. next, i think that updating your shop everyday, or almost, is really important in being seen. last, i've found that blogging is a fun and incredibly helpful tool in getting your name out there, not to mention meeting great people in the blogging community!

-3 etsy shops you just LOVE?

restless things - she is one of my favorite artists!
sadie designs - sarah is a friend i've made though blogging, and i just adore her style!
the social cellar - i always regret looking at her shop because i want a whole lot more than my wallet can handle!
and one more just because i can't choose three - allyson mellberg - she's an incredibly talented friend of mine, and i'm so happy that her prints decorate my walls!

-One year from now...

i'd like for chris, flojo and i to be working on the road during the month long adventure we've been talking about taking. now that chris and i are self-employed, we've been talking about taking a month, maybe more, and hooking up the camper and heading west making stops along the way. if that happened less than a year from now, i'd be happy!
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Have an etsy shop with over 300 sales and want to be a featured seller? Contact me at phletcher@gmail.com
As always, thanks for reading :)

Tuesday, November 23, 2010

#232 unofficial etsy featured seller - kodashii88

#232 unofficial etsy featured seller - kodashii88
Date joined etsy- 08/3/08
Sales to date - 324-Give us some basic info about you: name, where you live, kids/pets, favorite ice cream flavor, etc.

My name is Tadashii. I am a 24 year old mad tinkerer/dreamer from Pasadena California. Currently I do not have any pets of my own, but within my household we have a yorkie named Roscoe, the biggest little dog in the world.

I am in an exclusive relationship with baked goods, especially cookies. Never met one i did'nt like (but i am sure they loathe me for obvious reasons)

-Describe an average day in life of "you".

A typical day for me consists of

1. Coffee.

2. Standing in one place contemplating the mysterious goodness of cookies.

3. Jumping on the computer to answer convos and emails.

4. Working on design ideas, photographing items, drinking more coffee, packaging orders to ship, and yet again, another cup o' joe.

5. Work, work, work. My mind is always on ON.

-Were you creative growing up/what did you enjoy doing?

Growing up, i always ALWAYS took things apart. From christmas tree lights, to old televisions, nothing was safe around me. My mother caught on early to my "creative" personality, and
encouraged me to express myself in whatever positive artistic way i could.

She took me to get my first earring at 9, my first facial piercing (eyebrow) at 15, attended all of my clarinet concerts, and singing gigs. Read all of my very dark and sometimes disturbing poetry, made homemade halloween costumes, washed my paint covered shirts and pants, dyed my mowhawk all colors of the rainbow, swept up my metal covered carpet after an all nighter with an old typewriter (yes, i took it apart), and never failed me when life seemed meaningless. She is the bestest.

-What made you want to start selling on etsy?

I decided to start selling my work on etsy out of sheer wanting people to see me through my creations, and not just me as a "handsome young man". I knew i was so much more than a face, teeth, and torso, i knew i was a volcano of ideas that were just begging to overflow into the world.

-How long did it take for you to get your first sale on etsy?

It took me a few months to get my first sale on etsy. After that another followed, and then the sale train all but vanished from the earth. Starting in april of the following year, things started to pick up a bit, i started to take more pride in my photography, thought long and hard about the items i wanted to offer, and I never get more than 4 hours of sleep ( if that ) a night. I wouldn't have it any other way. I am a work-a-holic of the worst sort. I don't stop the beat until the drum explodes.

-Top 5 favorite foods, tv shows, and bands?

My top 5 bands/musicians current and past are:

1. Red Hot Chilli Peppers

2. Pat Benatar

3. Sade

4. Florence and the Machine

5. Celine dion (yes, i said Celine dion)

So many many more, but you said five, and rules is rules.

Top 5 foods:

1. Cookies

2. Green peppers

3. Turkey breast

4. Breakfast cereal

5. Water (it should be a food)


Top 5 t.v. shows;

1. Weeds

2. Any national geographic documentary

3. Avatar the last Airbender

4. The Big C

5. Nurse Jackie

-Is there anything you'd like to try your hand at doing? Knitting, baking, soap making, wood working, an instrument, etc.

Eventually, i would love to start a line of super badass military/industrial/steampunk inspired handbags. Just you wait ; )

-What would you suggest to new etsy sellers to promote their shops?

To all new sellers i would suggest you listen to your heart, head, and wallet. Don't do anything you don't love. Never spend too much time exhausting your brain for ideas, let them come naturally, and never spend what you don't have to spend. You don't wanna end up in the poor house because you wanted to add jet packs to your knitted cowls. Create, relist, and give the best damn customer service you can possibly give. It WILL pay off.

-3 etsy shops you just LOVE?

Some of my favorite Etsy shops are

Cubid.etsy.com

DrCraze.etsy.com

MantaWave.etsy.com


-One year from now...

A year from now, i see myself learning from the footsteps i left behind, and smiling in anticipation with the footsteps to come. The journey never ends....


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Have an etsy shop with over 300 sales and want to be a featured seller? Contact me at phletcher@gmail.com
As always, thanks for reading :)

Friday, November 5, 2010

#231 unofficial etsy featured seller - jenerijewelry

#231 unofficial etsy featured seller - jenerijewelry
Date joined etsy- 09/11/07
Sales to date - 1214-Give us some basic info about you: name, where you live, kids/pets, favorite ice cream flavor, etc.

Jen Neri (Hence the name JENERI Jewelry). I live outside of Chicago with my super supportive husband and adorable son :) No pets – too many allergies! My favorite ice cream is Ben and Jerry’s Chubby Hubby… but I only eat it every couple of years so that I don’t become a Chubby Wife!

-Describe an average day in life of "you".

The jewelry biz has been a blessing to me, so my typical day includes: getting my son ready for school and on the bus… and then it’s working until he gets home! I’ve been busy enough at times that I’ve considered hiring out some of my administrative duties (all of which I hate!). Once he’s home from school, it’s all mom mode.

-Were you creative growing up/what did you enjoy doing?

NO! My mom harped on me for 30 years about not having a hobby. She’s finally quit bugging me :)

-What made you want to start selling on etsy?

We moved from OH to the Chicago area, and I became a stay at home mom. I started going a bit crazy after about 2 weeks, and found a bead shop within walking distance. I started making beaded jewelry, but never wore it (not much of a “bead person”). A friend of mine introduced me to ETSY, so I decided to give it a shot – what else was I going to do with all of the jewelry I was making?!? I had some limited success until I started working with metal… and then the sales came!

-How long did it take for you to get your first sale on etsy?

Well that depends… the first sale was from family, so that doesn’t count. The second sale came from a stranger who thought he was purchasing from a different shop, so that doesn’t count. The first real sale came about a month after opening.

-Top 5 favorite foods, tv shows, and bands?

I love Italian, Mexican, Chinese. But my favorite is anything that someone other than myself makes!
I like reality tv and cooking shows too. My FAVORITE was LOST but unfortunately that’s over.
As for bands: Anything country, Lady Gaga, Rihanna, Kelly Clarkson, anything from the 80s and 90s.

-Is there anything you'd like to try your hand at doing? Knitting, baking, soap making, wood working, an instrument, etc.

Cooking. I’m not that great at it, but love to eat. It’d be nice to prepare tasty meals every night!

-What would you suggest to new etsy sellers to promote their shops?

GREAT PHOTOS!!!!!! People won’t give your item a second glance if the photo stinks. I’m constantly trying to reshoot and enhance my photos. Competition is tough and getting tougher on ETSY, so max out your shop and diversify. The more items you have, the more often you come up in the searches. NEVER GIVE UP!

-3 etsy shops you just LOVE?

I’ve recently purchased from these!
http://www.etsy.com/shop/piperandpaisley
http://www.etsy.com/shop/circularaccessories
http://www.etsy.com/shop/julieboyles

-One year from now...

I’ll be ready for a vacation… but hopefully too busy preparing for the Christmas season making jewelry, to actually take one. Maybe after Christmas :)


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Have an etsy shop with over 300 sales and want to be a featured seller? Contact me at phletcher@gmail.com
As always, thanks for reading :)

Thursday, November 4, 2010

#230 unofficial etsy featured seller - WoodinYou

#230 unofficial etsy featured seller - WoodinYou
Date joined etsy- 1/13/09
Sales to date - 481
-Give us some basic info about you: name, where you live, kids/pets, favorite ice cream flavor, etc.

Woodin' You is comprised of a husband & wife team located in the Pacific Northwest area of Vancouver, WA. Our business venture began in 2004 literally from a dream I had about a bone-shaped elevated pet feeder. My husband Martin Krcek, is a carpenter by trade and I sketched out what I dreamed about and asked him if he could make these. He thought I was a little nuts, but followed through and now seven years later, we have US patent on that pet feeder design and have continued to add new and exciting products to our line. We are super proud to be an American based business. Since we received the patent, many large manufacturing companies approach us to represent and manufacture our items in China. We always tell them "No way!" and will keep feeding our shredder the junk mail related to these offers. My husband, does all of the woodworking. And myself, Amy Krcek, does the sewing, shipping, and accounting aspect of our business operation. We have a five year old son, two dogs, Boomer (yellow lab)& Phineas (black lab) and one LARGE black cat. In addition to running our business, our family volunteers as 'puppy raisers' for Guide Dogs for the Blind - an organization that trains dogs to help the visually impaired. Our lab, Phineas is a 'career change' dog for Guide Dogs. He ended up not making the cut to be a Guide, so we adopted him back and just recently finished his training to become a therapy dog. With his certification, we will volunteer with Delta to do in home hospice visits with children. We really live and breathe our Woodin' You business and not only enjoy creating pet products, but volunteering with our pets to help impact the lives of others.

-Describe an average day in life of "you".

I am truly blessed to be able to work from home. An average weekday is getting up at 4:30 AM to have a much needed cup of coffee while I respond Etsy inquiries and posting Etsy items. Then it's time to get my son ready for school and out the door. At 8:30 AM, it's back home and sewing and shipping like a crazy woman - typically sewing between 200-250 items per week. We sell on-line on both Etsy and our website and to many retail stores. Many of these stores have found us via Etsy and we love being able to offer high quality handcrafted items for pampered pets. We have seen a huge shift in privately owned shops desiring these types of products for their stores. After my son is home from school, I switch gears and my mom hat goes on and I leave Woodin' You world until the next morning. It can be hard having separation when you operate a business from your home, but we have set lots of boundaries to not allow either aspect to suffer.


-Were you creative growing up/what did you enjoy doing?

I was defiantly creative growing up. My mom always encouraged creativity and I was always working on something. Doll clothes for my dolls, building very elaborate forts with whatever wood scraps I could find, melting crayons to make some really cool pictures - oh boy, the list goes on and on.

-What made you want to start selling on etsy?
I had never even heard of Etsy and in December 2008 a friend told me about it. So, I checked it out and thought, why not. At that point, we'd be selling at our local Farmer's Market and various pet shows and trade-shows.

-How long did it take for you to get your first sale on etsy?
Our first item was listed on March 26, 2009 and the very next day we had a sell. Needless to say, I was hooked.
-Top 5 favorite foods, tv shows, and bands?

* My favorite foods would have to include any type of salad - many of my friends have nick-named me the 'rabbit' - I just love salads.
* Favorite TV shows - Man Woman Wild, Biggest Loser, Home Makeover, local news. We really rarely watch TV and enjoy playing board games, cards and puzzles with our son. It seems like there isn't much time for TV and we enjoy spending time with our family and our pets instead.

-Is there anything you'd like to try your hand at doing? Knitting, baking, soap making, wood working, an instrument, etc.

Both my husband and I have always had an interest in the guitar. We mess around once in a while, but never anything too serious.
-What would you suggest to new etsy sellers to promote their shops?

I highly recommend new Etsy sellers to take time to take really great photos of their product. Etsy customers don't have the luxury of seeing your work in person, so you have to really showcase your product in what they see via pictures. Repost items often to keep in the customers forefront. It is a mistake to set up your shop, post your items and just wait. There is a lot of competition out there and if you want business stay on top of being in front of your customers. And lastly, remember your more than a crafter your running an on-line business. Treat your customers with professionalism and give them what you'd expect if you were dealing with a business. Respond to emails and uphold the policies you have in place.

-3 etsy shops you just LOVE?

I love Boojiboo (super inspirational amount of sales), Sasakicreations (my first Etsy purchase) & all the pet boutique retailers that have found us via Etsy - we appreciate your business!

-One year from now...

I'd love to continue to grow and to just keep bringing fun and creative products to the many pet owners.



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Have an etsy shop with over 300 sales and want to be a featured seller? Contact me at phletcher@gmail.com
As always, thanks for reading :)

Wednesday, November 3, 2010

#229 unofficial etsy featured seller - somethingshidinghere

#229 unofficial etsy featured seller - somethingshidinghere
Date joined etsy- 6/19/07
Sales to date - 2158
-Give us some basic info about you: name, where you live, kids/pets, favorite ice cream flavor, etc.

shauna & stephen
we live in an old tire factory in philadelphia, pa
we share our studios and home with 2 rescue dogs, dexter and noodle

-Describe an average day in life of "you".

everyday is different. the only thing that remains the same is that we get up early and stay up late. our unofficial motto is "must not sleep".

-Were you creative growing up/what did you enjoy doing?

we both were! stephen grew up taking apart things to see how they worked and shauna started her first business when she was 6: selling rocks from her front porch customized with paint-pen drawings.

-What made you want to start selling on etsy?

we started our shop the week after our first renegade craft fair. we had so many people emailing us for items they had seen and wished they purchased.

-How long did it take for you to get your first sale on etsy?

our first sale was the very same day!
-Top 5 favorite foods, tv shows, and bands?

food: shauna lives on coffee and stephen really loves bacon
tv shows: we both love the beekman boys!
bands: shauna just met her favorite band "first aid kit" and stephen learning how to play the guitar thanks to his love of "led belly".

-Is there anything you'd like to try your hand at doing? Knitting, baking, soap making, wood working, an instrument, etc.

we have a long list! currently shauna is obsessed with learning how to make a perfect french macaroon and stephen's taking guitar lessons on a vintage guitar shauna's dad gave him. next: we'd LOVE to get a kiln and start casting our own ceramics.

-What would you suggest to new etsy sellers to promote their shops?

blog, blog, blog! most of our etsy traffic comes from our blog - or other blogs who write about us. take lots of photographs and share the little stories behind your product. like most things in life... a little personality goes a long way!
3 etsy shops you just LOVE?

we like shopping etsy for vintage. items are well curated and it's so fun to search for new additions to our many collections.
amazing vintage linen: http://www.etsy.com/shop/grainsack

etsy is also a great place for hard to find books and magazines, like my favorite Japanese magazine "come home".
here's where i find them: http://www.etsy.com/shop/pomadour24

another great thing about etsy is the amount of people who are willing to make you custom items.
we recently had custom dog portraits made here: http://www.etsy.com/shop/sian?ref=seller_info

-One year from now...

we'll be up too late, drinking too much coffee, making something crazy.

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Have an etsy shop with over 300 sales and want to be a featured seller? Contact me at phletcher@gmail.com
As always, thanks for reading :)

Tuesday, November 2, 2010

#228 unofficial etsy featured seller - tsurubride

#228 unofficial etsy featured seller - tsurubride
Date joined etsy- 2/17/07
Sales to date - 435-Give us some basic info about you: name, where you live, kids/pets, favorite ice cream flavor, etc.

Hi! My name is Meghan, and I'm the TsuruBride. My name is taken from the Decemberist's album "The Crane Wife" (tsuru is Japanese for crane). It's story has a strong meaning for myself and darling husband, Aaron, so I adopted it for my shop persona. I've lived in Columbus, OH for the last 7 years, but before that I lived in Toronto, Ontario. I moved here for my regular day job, and met the love of my life and decided to put down some roots and stay awhile. I have 2 amazing step-daughters, who are passionate and creative people who keep you on your toes! We have a trouble-making cat, Mushaboom Mew Mew, or Moosh for short. She's a lone wolf, who also loves to play, cuddle and daydream of squirrels. I'm lactose intolerant so I'm all about the soy or tufu icecream, although I do have a wicked sweet tooth!

-Describe an average day in life of "you".

Oh my, where to start.... Like I mentioned above I have a day job so 9-6 Monday to Friday is booked solid. On my evenings I take time to update my shop, answer convos/emails, sketch new/custom work, and do some prep work for the weekend. Weekends are sewing time. Most of my pieces are made to order so that's what I'm working on come the weekend. I'll mix up sewing time, with running errands, and spending time with the man. And on Sundays I'll package up orders.

-Were you creative growing up/what did you enjoy doing?

I come from a really creative family. Both my grandmothers were big sewers, quilting and making clothes. My mom also made us clothes as kids, and has a great eye for interior design. My brother and I spent our youth drawing, writing stories, and playing with toys that sparked our imagination. My mom taught me sew when I was 6 or 7, making clothes for my Barbies, and it just felt right. I just kept on sewing, eventually going to school for fashion design.

-What made you want to start selling on etsy?

I actually started on Etsy as a jewelry seller. A friend had told me about it, her sister sold things on it, and my mother-in-law made beaded bracelets and showed me how. So I started making necklaces and bracelets and selling them on-line. I don't wear a lot of jewelry though, so I would never wear the things I made. My youngest step daughter got me back into sewing, making clothes for her dolls, and then I played with some leftover leather from my school days. I just started making purses for my friends and since people seemed to respond to them and I enjoyed making them, I re-vamped my store.

-How long did it take for you to get your first sale on etsy?

FOREVER! Or at least it felt like forever. Let's say 6 months. But to be fair, my photos weren't that great, I wasn't doing anything to promote, and my heart wasn't truly in it. The first sale came much quicker when I revamped my shop with purses. I loved what I was making and I got my husband's help to take some great shots. I think that care and love really showed and pushed my purses out there.
-Top 5 favorite foods, tv shows, and bands?

Foods: Chocolate, steak, sushi, tapas, chocolate
TV: Fringe, Castle, Bones, House, Community
Bands: Decemberists, Neko Case, Sharon Jones and the Dap Kings, Nina Simone, She & Him

-Is there anything you'd like to try your hand at doing? Knitting, baking, soap making, wood working, an instrument, etc.

Oh man, EVERYTHING! I'd love to have a new job every month, though not rally since I like a fair amount of stability. But I do think the idea of being an Xray technician one month, and a Graphic Designer the next, would be really cool. there's so many great intesting jobs out there, that you never heard about from your high school guidance counselor. But crafty-wise, I'd love to learn to knit, quilt (I know I can sew, but the idea of tackling a full on quilt is very intimidating), work working, etc.

-What would you suggest to new etsy sellers to promote their shops?

Number one is to look at every opportunity as an opportunity to promote yourself. If you make jewelry/clothes - wear it, paper goods/wall art - give them out as gifts. If you don't love and promote what you're doing nobody else will either. I think there are some great shops out there who have really branded themselves well. They have blogs and followers for just being themselves, not shilling all the time. I use facebook, twitter and tumblr, since I found that blogging wasn't a love for me. Don't over commit to promotion to the point where you can't get work done! Join an Etsy group! Don't know where to start? Try a group based in your city. These can be great support, especially for new sellers. A lot of groups love to promote each other, and not only that but they're a shoulder to lean on.

-3 etsy shops you just LOVE?

ACK! Too many! Sleepyking.etsy.com, lulidesigns.etsy.com, missmeganmac.etsy.com

-One year from now...

I hope that my menagerie is twice the size, LOL. I hope to expand my doll and artisan purse line. These aren't my big sellers, but they keep my creative juices flowing!

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Have an etsy shop with over 300 sales and want to be a featured seller? Contact me at phletcher@gmail.com
As always, thanks for reading :)