#238 unofficial etsy featured seller - psitsinthedetails
Date joined etsy- 7/14/08
Sales to date - 529-Give us some basic info about you: name, where you live, kids/pets, favorite ice cream flavor, etc.
Hi! My name is Patty Schaffer. I live in a rural area about 15 minutes north of Allentown, Pa. I am happily married to my high school crush, Todd, for 16 years and we have two children, Sarah, 11, and Ben, 8. Our family also includes our chocolate lab, Sophie, two fire belly toads, Spotty and Hot Tamale, and an African dwarf frog named Toga.
I love ‘eye candy’ so I have tons of magazines and idea books stacked all over the place. I am an avid reader. I adore flowers and dream of having huge gardens in my yard some day. I am known by my family as Paparazzi Patty because I take so many pictures at our gatherings (they don’t complain, though, because I make family albums for gifts at Christmas!). My favorite flavor ice cream is vanilla and occasionally I like to top it off with some hot caramel.
-Describe an average day in life of "you".
I would say my ‘average day’ depends on the time of the year. I am a stay at home mom so my kid’s schedule dictates my schedule. During the school year I get them on the bus in the morning, then I spend my day running errands, taking care of household things or, my favorite part, creating items and working for my Etsy store (I am grateful for the flexibility that working from home allows). It seems like the afternoon bus stop pick-up time rolls around very fast and once again the kids are home. The next few hours revolve around homework, supper and family time. After my kids go to bed I head back to my art table or computer for more creative time.
-Were you creative growing up/what did you enjoy doing?
I would say I was creative growing up. My teachers in elementary school had me help decorate the bulletin boards in the classroom. I made countless drawings for my grandparents (who thoughtfully saved them) and I remember loving to do paint-by-number paintings. I think I even made a complete nativity scene out of a tissue box, toilet paper rolls and tissues. It seems like all the crayons, paper and drawing of my youth was leading me somewhere because I went to college and graduated with a degree in graphic design.
-What made you want to start selling on etsy?
I was looking for a way to be a stay at home mom and have a creative outlet. Earning some money along the way was a bonus. I came across Etsy about two years ago and thought it was a brilliant idea. I have to confess that I am now addicted to the site.
-How long did it take for you to get your first sale on etsy?
I had my first sale about an hour after I listed my first items. I have a funny little story about that..... MasterCard had just come out with the ‘priceless’ commercials around that time. I listed some items, stepped away to eat supper, and then came back to my computer to check things out. I saw I had made a sale and I was so excited that I pushed back from the desk while yelling “Yahoo!” or something along those lines and I ran over my toe with the wheel of my chair. My husband joked: “Listing an item on Etsy: 20 cents. First sale: $5.00. Trip to emergency room for broken toe resulting from sale: $1,000. Final sale: -$994.80.” (My toe was fine, by the way – no ER trip required!)
-Top 5 favorite foods, tv shows, and bands?
Favorite foods.... mushroom pizza dipped in ranch dressing, lobster tail, brownies, Chinese food, homemade stuffing
Favorite TV shows..... CSI, Oprah, Spongebob Squarepants, Cake Boss, Little House on the Prairie (even though it is no longer on)
Favorite bands..... Linkin Park, Nickelback, Maroon 5, OneRepublic, Train (and I also love 80’s music)
-Is there anything you'd like to try your hand at doing? Knitting, baking, soap making, wood working, an instrument, etc.
I often joke that I’d like to make duplicates of myself so I can do more. Of course I would need the Housewife Patty and the Mom Patty and the Etsy Store Owner Patty, but I would love to have Pattys to try jewelry making, crocheting and knitting, needle felting, and cake decorating. Just a few more of me would do the trick!
-What would you suggest to new etsy sellers to promote their shops?
This is usually always said in every interview, but I agree totally: Have great photographs.... there are so many tutorials out there to help you.
The most important thing I can suggest to new sellers is: you get out what you put in. I can tell when I am more active (making and listing new products) because my views and sales go up. If you list a few things and then sit back to wait and watch not much will happen. This is your business. Be active. Constantly tweek things to improve your shop. For example, rearrange items using the 'custom' option so your store is more visually appealing. Maybe you can group things by color in a row. Make sure you have all your store information filled out in the the profile and policies sections. Add your personality to descriptions in your listings. Renew and list often. The name of my store is 'P.S. it's in the details' and I truly believe that the little details make all the difference.
-3 etsy shops you just LOVE?
•Danita Art - I love how she offers a variety of items but you can tell it’s ‘hers’ right away. I have several of her prints and jewelry pieces.
•Babes in a Blanket - Leann makes beautiful crocheted items, including scarves– I have quite a few of them!
•Sea Pinks - One word: ADORABLE!!!!!
-One year from now...
I hope to be better organized with my plans for upcoming seasons and for my business in general. I am usually a fly-by-the-seat-of-my-pants kind of girl and I would love to be more goal-oriented with my business. I also want to approach brick and mortar shops in the upcoming year to try to get my items sold locally.
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 :)