#102 unofficial etsy featured seller - katskrafts
Date joined etsy -8/25/07
Sales to date - 699
-Give us some basic info about you: name, where you live, kids/pets, favorite ice cream flavor, etc.
Hi, I'm Katrina Beyer from Holland, MI. If I was showing you the back of my hand as all true Michiganders do (I'm actually a Chicago transplant) I'd be pointing to the lower left side on the Lake Michigan shore. I've been married 6.5 years to the most wonderful man on earth and we have a 9 month-old ball of energy named Caden, who is the absolute darling of our lives. No pets except for the dust bunnies that are multiplying under all my furniture... Wow- a favorite ice cream flavor? I have to choose just one? I like it all, but today I have been craving Royal Coconut and Chocolate from Hudsonville Creamery (an ice cream maker in our area) Yum, yum!
-Describe an average day in life of "you".
I wake up early with Caden, feed/change/play with him, try to eat breakfast and keep up with my active son! At morning naptime (blessed naptime!) I am able to check etsy convos and work on orders. In the afternoon we run errands or go for a walk and if he goes down for another nap I do some more etsy work. When my hubby comes home in the evening, he helps wrangle Caden and I fix dinner. While it's cooking, I usually try to squeeze in a few more minutes on etsy so that I can relax in the evening, although with how busy I've been lately, I've been using my lap desk to assemble table tents or fold cootie catchers while we watch some evening TV. I used to think I was busy as a teacher- ha! Being a stay-at-home/ work-at-home mom is not for the faint-of-heart!
-Were you creative growing up/what did you enjoy doing?
Yes, I've always been creative! I had the blessing of growing up in a home where my mom encouraged us to read/draw/create/sing/etc. I'm grateful that my mom always made me feel that if I wanted to express myself, (through words or hobbies or whatever!) I could and should. Because of that, I have dabbled in everything from painting to singing to scrapbooking to sewing to knitting to fill-in-the-blank! (I should give props to my grandma who taught me how to sew as a teenager.) I have a creative gene, I guess.
-What made you want to start selling on etsy?
I'd been making handmade cards and scrapbook accessories for awhile, selling them to friends and at the hospital where my mom works and wanted to explore doing craft shows. My best friend heard of etsy and told me about it. I checked it out and thought it was so awesome! I knew what I wanted my name to be right off the bat and signed up. Since my best friend was doing it at the same time (although it took her a bit longer to settle on a name- daisysanddots) we were able to confide in one another and learn the ropes together.
-How long did it take for you to get your first sale on etsy?
I signed up in August 2007 and got my first sale in November. Those first few months were totally all about research, research, research! I kept taking new photos (built myself a lightbox) and continued to edit my listings as I read forums and tutorials. Each month my sales increased as my learning curve improved. I had a blast, being able to sell the creations I loved to make and support my Hobby Lobby addiction. (There seriously should be a 12 step group for ribbon...) I joke with my hubby that he should find a way to support his golf habit! It wasn't until March of the next year that I had an epiphany on a sleepless night (truly, I did!) that perhaps other brides would enjoy customized cootie catchers for their own weddings. (7 years ago, when I married, most of my family who was from the Chicago area did not know my husband very well. So, I thought it might be fun to include some trivia for them while they waited on us at the reception.) Fast forward to 2010, where my cootie catcher designs have evolved into 5 formats (favors, place cards, menus, programs and invites- I've even sold these for several companies as their brochures!) and they are the sole focus of my shop. I've been blessed to sell all over the world and be featured in several bridal magazines and prominent websites.
-Top 5 favorite foods, tv shows, and bands?
-Anything off the grill
-Jelly Belly jellybeans
-American Idol (yeah, I admit it!)
-Parks and Recreation (I watch too much TV on Thursdays...)
-Need to Breathe
-Is there anything you'd like to try your hand at doing? Knitting, baking, soap making, wood working, an instrument, etc.
Considering I've tried just about everything... I guess I would say instead of trying something new, I'd really like to have more time to just dabble in what I already love- sewing, scrapbooking and cardmaking. I would never say we haven't been blessed with how successful my etsy shop has been, but it does take time away from my crafty pursuits. If I HAD to pick, I'd have to say soap making. I made just about every Christmas gift by hand this past year (crazy goal with a new baby, I know- but I did it!) and I think I want to keep that tradition. Be on the lookout next year, female relatives, for hand-made soap!
-What would you suggest to new etsy sellers to promote their shops?
Continually refine and improve your product until it can't get any more unique or fabulous, take great photos, list often and be active on the forums and your blog when possible. Do as Dori would- "Just keep swimming, swimming, swimming!"
-3 etsy shops you just LOVE?
My best friend's shop- daisysanddots.etsy.com
Beautiful announcements and invites- roxterdesigns.etsy.com
Gotta-have'em tags and papercrafts- Pacokeco.etsy.com
-One year from now, I hope my number of sold items is ...
1000! Four-digits would be amazing!
Have a successful etsy shop and want to be a featured seller? Contact me at firstname.lastname@example.org
As always, thanks for reading :)