#87 unofficial etsy featured seller - dkoss2
Date joined etsy - 2/25/07
Sales to date - 313-Give us some basic info about you: name, where you live, kids/pets, favorite ice cream flavor, etc.
My name is Diane Koss. I live in Westmont, NJ about 10 minutes outside of Philadelphia. I am a single lady so no little ones to distract me while I work but I do have a lovely furbeast (cat) named Baby Wonderful. She's not the best assistant in the world but she sure does know how to keep me warm in the winter! When I'm not sewing, I love to go hiking and spend time in my garden which is mostly comprised of organic vegetables... lots of them! I love being able to cook meals from my own harvests, it's such an amazing feeling being self sufficient for a few months out of the year. My favorite ice cream flavor might be CiaoBella's Tahitian Vanilla Gelato and I just discovered Trader Joe's Nonfat Plain Frozen Yogurt, top notch!
-Describe an average day in life of "you".
My day usually starts around 11am when I wake up. I'll usually check my email for orders and my other social networking sites and then package orders and head to the post office if I need to, otherwise, I'll go to the gym. I usually start sewing around 2pm and will continue to sew or do other business related activities until about midnight and sometimes much later when I am busier. I usually listen to music when I sew or put something from netflix on the T.V. so I can glance up and give my eyes a break when I need to. I also chat a lot online with other small, hardworking business owners like myself throughout the day while working. We keep each other company even though we might be miles away from one another. I'll work dinner somewhere in there and watering the garden when it's that time of year. I usually go to bed around 2 or 3am and wake up to do it all over again.
-Were you creative growing up/what did you enjoy doing?
I was very creative growing up. Art was always my favorite class as a kid and I vividly remember building the most extravagant forts in my front yard with tree stump chairs and moss carpeting. I went to college as a psychology major but quickly switched to art when I couldn't stay away from the photography studio. I graduated with a degree in photography, video, and mixed media and a minor in psychology. Creativity just flows in my blood. It's what makes me come alive. No matter how hard I tried to force myself down a different path, I finally had to give in to what I was really meant to do... create.
-What made you want to start selling on etsy?
I was working at a small cafe in New Hope, PA as the manager/baker/candle stick maker... ok, I didn't make any candles, but I did everything else... and I wasn't really using my creativity other than to come up with new creative sandwich combinations. So, I started sewing and my boss was kind enough to let me sell some of them in the shop. I got such a great response that I decided to try selling them on Etsy. I cried when I got my first sale, to England no less. I was hooked when I shipped out my first monster overseas.
-How long did it take for you to get your first sale on etsy?
It only took me about a week to make my first sale on Etsy. I started early on when there were less sellers on Etsy. I know it usually takes a lot longer for people to make their first sales, so I guess I was lucky in that way. It gave me the confidence I needed to keep making and keep listing.
-Top 5 favorite foods, tv shows, and bands?
2.)Vegetarian Buffalo Wings
3.)Tomato, Basil, Mozarella Sandwiches
3.)Smoked Cheddar, Apple, and Basil Sandwiches
5.)Sweet Potato Fries
1.)It's Always Sunny in Philadelphia
4.)King of Queens
5.)Ace of Cakes
2.)Mumford and Sons
5.)Iron and Wine
-Is there anything you'd like to try your hand at doing? Knitting, baking, soap making, wood working, an instrument, etc.
I'd LOVE to learn how to spin my own wool so that I can knit up some wonderful creations. I also wish I had time to make soaps and teas with the herbs from my own garden. I really wish I could play the banjo, accordian, or violin. Ok, ok so I want to try my hand at almost EVERYTHING at least once. Is that allowed?
-What would you suggest to new etsy sellers to promote their shops?
I would suggest using as many social networking tools as possible, i.e. facebook, twitter, blogs, etc. I always carry around business cards and you'd be surprised at how many I've handed out at the strangest moments. I also do a lot, I mean A LOT, of craft shows throughout the year and hand out business cards and talk about Etsy constantly. If you want to be serious about your business you have to really make it a huge part of your life and the people will come.
-3 etsy shops you just LOVE?
There are so, so many Etsy shops that I just adore it's hard to pick just 3. First, my sister makes wonderful stationary creations over at Wind Up Bird Studios (http://www.etsy.com/shop/rkoss) . We even have some monster prints that we've collaborated on! I also just love the guys over at Fuzzy Ink (http://www.etsy.com/shop/FuzzyInk) , they keep me entertained throughout the day and will be doing many of the same shows as me this year. Perhaps an epic mascot battle is in the works? Maybe... Finally, one of my biggest inspirations is Kit Lane (http://www.etsy.com/shop/KitLane), her work is absolutely mind-blowingly adorable and she's just the sweetest darn thing to boot! You can also check out my favorites list over on Etsy for more of my favorite work.
-One year from now, I hope my number of sold items is ....
I'd shoot high and hope for the number to be 500 but I'd settle for 400 if I have to :)
Have a successful etsy shop and want to be a featured seller? Contact me at firstname.lastname@example.org
As always, thanks for reading :)