Thursday, July 8, 2010

#159 unofficial etsy featured seller - apiecebydenise

#159 unofficial etsy featured seller - apiecebydenise
Date joined etsy -10/20/08
Sales to date - 562
-Give us some basic info about you: name, where you live, kids/pets, favorite ice cream flavor, etc.

My name is Denise, I'm originally from Maryland but have called Georgia my home for 13+ years. I'm married and have 2 boys (ages 18 & 20).

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

My average day starts with checking my etsy convo's and facebook, shower then I'm off to work. My studio is in my basement, which makes the commute a short walk. I try to set goals for myself for the day, I have them written down and hanging in front of my pottery wheel at eye level. I'm easily distracted so having something in front of me to keep me on task really helps, sometimes.

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

I grew upon the Eastern Shore of Maryland, I was pretty creative I guess, my parents wouldn't buy me a swimming pool for my Barbie dolls, so I dug a hole and filled it with water, it quickly turned to a mud hole, but I was happy. I also ate the goo inside of my Stretch Armstrong doll, my friend dared me after we stretched him too far and he ripped open. So guess back then I was good as making my folks mad and lots of messes. I discovered clay in 9th grade while in high school.
-What made you want to start selling on etsy?

Professionally I was working as the marketing director for a real estate company and I hated it. I liked the creative process, that was all. I literally would cry on the phone to my husband during my lunch hour because I was so miserable. Finally I quit my job and jumped into my craft full time and never looked back.

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

My first sale on Etsy happened pretty quickly, it was a custom order and I didn't think I could do it, so I referred the customer to another Etsy seller that I felt could probably do it better. The customer said she was impressed with my honesty and insisted I do the job, which I did and she loved it. I've been selling on Etsy now since December 2008. After every sale I still feel the need to text my husband on his cell to tell him, "Guess what? I sold another mug", or whatever it is I sold. I find it very exciting and fulfilling that not only do I make stuff, but I actually make stuff that other people want to buy.

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

I make other stuff besides pottery, because of my rather expensive homemade soap addiction, I learned to make my own, I learned to knit via youtube. I love to bake/eat baked goods, I macrame' and I enjoy photography, camping and caving.
-What would you suggest to new etsy sellers to promote their shops?

While I worked in marketing, I can share a few tricks that help me with my business and a few tips as what not to do.
1. You should have an interesting eye catching business card. This is the mini billboard for your business. You want people to want to pick it up. Leave it with your tip when you go out to eat. Leave it in the grocery cart, turn it into a magnet, give some to your family to give out. When you sell something, stick 2 inside the package in hopes that the receiver will share. Use your business card.
2. Do not waste time in the Etsy forums, you will get sucked in to the negativity of others. Instead, get offline and go make something.
3. Don't pay for advertising and don't get tangled up with blog give-aways. Doing 1 a year, maybe IF they have a huge following. Otherwise you are making stuff to give out for free and you won't generate business from it.
4. Set goals, put them in writing and hold yourself to it. You are your own boss, treat this as your job. Show up everyday and work!
5. Quality, would you buy what you make?
6. Blog and cross promote. Find a friend on Etsy and toot each others horns.

My most favorite Etsy shops are

One year from now I hope...

to hire help.

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