Friday, July 2, 2010

#154 unofficial etsy featured seller - aosLeather

#154 unofficial etsy featured seller - aosLeather
Date joined etsy -1/2/08
Sales to date - 812
Give us some basic info about you: name, where you live, kids/pets, favorite ice cream flavor, etc.

My name is Kathy and I live in beautiful Northern Michigan. I have three cats, two grown daughters and the two best sons-in-law a person could ask for. I'm an ice-cream purist; vanilla is my favorite, but I'd never turn down a serving of chocolate or most other flavors!

Describe an average day in life of "you".

When you work at home, you're pretty much always at work. The computer gets turned on on my way to the kitchen, my first cup of coffee is consumed while taking care of customer inquiries and checking on orders. I love it when I wake up to an order or two - one of my favorite things about internet commerce is that it's the only venue I've ever used where i can actually sell things while I'm asleep! After clearing up the morning's computer work I take care of any shipping that needs to be done and then get to work making things out of leather. Errands and housework get crammed in wherever there is space in the day or an over-riding need. I generally work late into the night, being a bit of a night-owl. Sleep/awake/repeat ;-)

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

My mom was a great creative influence in my life. She was amazing with her hands - she sewed, knit, decorated cakes like a pro and did the most amazing needlework I've ever seen. Both she and my father encouraged all of us kids to be curious and creative, stocking our playroom with all manner of art & craft supplies. I could sew my own clothing before second grade and when I was a teen I didn't own a pair of bell-bottom jeans that I hadn't embroidered the heck outta!

What made you want to start selling on etsy?

My oldest daughter attended a conference where she met and talked to Rob Kalen. She was impressed with his ideas and vision and encouraged me to put my stuff on Etsy early on. I have to confess, rather abashedly, that I was so busy with craft shows, etc, that I didn't check it out for nearly a year, despite her regular prompting. Of course, once I checked it out I was as impressed as she was. I have apologized to her repeatedly for not listening sooner, as it was obviously excellent advice!

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

About 6 weeks. Then for a long time it was just one here, one there, long spaces between. But I worked on my pictures, tweaked my descriptions and knew enough to not expect too much too soon.

Top 5 favorite foods, tv shows, and bands?

My favorite foods are constantly changing - I guess that means that variety is my top pick. I'll watch almost anything in the science-fiction genre, and I have a news channel on TV most of the day. Classic Rock and Classical Music are what I listen to most, with Paul Simon and Beethoven getting my top slots in their categories.

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

Pottery. I've never done much, except the little I did in high school, but I think I would love it and might even be able to get pretty good at it.

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

The number one thing is pictures. The internet is such a visual media - if you want to stand out, your pictures have to be visually compelling. This is an area I am still working on myself, but the improvements between my "now" pictures and my earlier pictures is significant. Second to that, put yourself out there via social media. This has become a vital part of creating a presence on the internet. Blog, Tweet, do Facebook or MySpace - any or all of the above, as you see fit. The only cost involved in these is your time, so it will fit into most budgets!

3 etsy shops you just LOVE?

I love so many on Etsy - do I really have to choose??
I love trolling through the stones at AZbluerockers and I drool over the incredible beaded jewelry pieces at Sedonaskye. And just for fun, I recently discovered that Leonard Nimoy actually has a shop on Etsy. Yes, THAT Leonard Nimoy and no, he doesn't have any Spock figurines for sale, but you can see his photo-art T shirts on Etsy at SecretSelves

One year from now, I hope my number of sold items is...

growing steadily

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