#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!
Have an etsy shop with over 300 sales and want to be a featured seller? Contact me at firstname.lastname@example.org
As always, thanks for reading :)