Friday, July 30, 2010

#178 unofficial etsy featured seller - theluckyfish

#178 unofficial etsy featured seller - theluckyfish
Date joined etsy- 7/18/07
Sales to date - 899-Give us some basic info about you: name, where you live, kids/pets, favorite ice cream flavor, etc.

Hi! I'm Ra, a mountain mama with a little lion of a son (who loves to dance) and a new baby girl (who loves to growl). My husband and I have spent the last 12 years pioneering a piece of land in the beautiful Big Sur mountains of California's Central Coast.

We built a cabin with our own hands. We use solar power. We heat our bathtub with wood. We grow apples, vegetables, flowers and herbs in our organic garden. We have a funny dog named Eddie who likes to herd cows and has a fluffy, white bunny tail.

I love to build things with adobe - little houses, tile mosaic walls, and an outdoor clay oven in which I make Indian flat breads, pizzas, and all-night roasted beans and coconut rice pudding.

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

A day in my life... is spent with the baby on my back in her Ergo carrier! I wake up with a cup of Yerba Mate tea with whole milk and raw local honey. My "meditation" includes an hour of dance and hanging cotton diapers in the sun - I love to watch them flap in the ocean breeze. There is usually some kind of building project - plumbing, electrical, hanging sheet rock, etc... because a self-built home is never "done"! And, most importantly, we eat all day long... fresh veggies from the garden, meat from our friend's ranch, homemade wine in recycled bottles without labels!

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

Growing up... I loved to dance (every day!), paint with acrylics, develop and print black & white photography, and build forts at the creek behind my parent's house.

-What made you want to start selling on etsy?

I started selling on etsy in 2006 after a long, snowy winter led me to buy a sewing machine to keep busy. I started making hemp bags and all my friends wanted some. I decided to sell them and found etsy through a Google search. I opened "Coast Mountain Crafts" for my fabric and gemstone jewelry creations. Soon thereafter, I opened "The Lucky Fish" to feed my love of beautiful vintage items. My first sales came just a few days after I opened shop. I quickly fell in love with the etsy experience!

-Top 5 favorite foods, tv shows, and bands?

My favorite things - Greek food (feta cheese, olives, tomatoes, cucumbers, red wine, lamb); Blues and World music (Taj Mahal, Ali Farka, John Lee Hooker); Netflix documentaries about fashion (Valentino - The Last Emperor, Lagerfield Confidential).

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

I love to try new things! I want to open another etsy shop for my garden medicine (bath salts, herbal tinctures, herbal teas, infused oils). I want to learn to cook good East Indian food, and Zumba (really!). I want to learn how to install radiant-heated flooring.

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

Spread joy with your shop! Communicate with your customers! Master your camera! Wrap your packages beautifully! Stay flexible to what works!

3 etsy shops I just love:

Tamar - Nest Pretty Things. Her store conjures a sweet life... lovely, excellent photography, beautiful styling. I love her blog!

GaiaConceptions. I want to live everyday in her clothing! Gorgeous designs made with my favorite organic fabrics. And she's a gorgeous model!

Wickedpen. Her shop is soft, soothing and peaceful. It transports me back in time. I love her hand-dyed slip dresses and homemade soaps.

One year from now...

I hope to finish building our Zen-inspired bathhouse, to rely solely on solar electric power, to teach my son to read and write, to create a new line of clothing and homegoods made with vintage Vera scarves.

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

Thursday, July 29, 2010

#177 unofficial etsy featured seller - pila12903

#177 unofficial etsy featured seller - pila12903
Date joined etsy- 11/10/09
Sales to date - 1178
-Give us some basic info about you: name, where you live, kids/pets, favorite ice cream flavor, etc.

My name is Priscilla Ornelas but everyone calls me Pila.
I live in Fresno, California but was raised in Mendota, California.
I don’t have any kids but someday I’ll have a few running around the home. I do have a 13 year old Chihuahua who I treat like my little princess.
My favorite ice cream is mint chocolate but I love so many other flavors.

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

Well, I wake up every morning around 5:30am and make my husband breakfast and his lunch for work. I start cleaning up the house and if I’m not feeling to lazy, I like to exercise for about an hour and shower. After I get all of that out of the way, I usually ship everything right when the post office opens to beat the crowd. After that, I begin to work on new designs. I list and renew items everyday and I like to update other sites such as Facebook and Deviantart. I’ll work just about all day til my husband gets home. I’m very devoted to my Etsy shop and I love what I do.

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

I’ve always been creative and I’ve always maintained an interest in beading. I’d make hundreds of bracelets out of pony beads and hand them out to all my friends in school. We were so cool with all those bracelets! I also draw, paint, and play my guitar whenever time allows

-What made you want to start selling on etsy?

I’d say my family and friends motivated me to find a venue. They would always compliment my creations and always express to me how well I’d do selling them. So I figured it couldn’t hurt to give it a shot and I found Etsy. I didn’t even bother with ebay; I know how expensive it is.

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

Hmm, I believe it took about ten days to get my first sale. It pushed me to list so many items that day. I was so excited and just couldn’t wait to get another sale. It’s quite addicting when you get your first sale. It still amazes me that someone out there in Canada or New York is wearing something I made! It’s a wonderful feeling.


-Top 5 favorite foods, tv shows, and bands?

My 5 favorite foods would be; enchiladas, pizza, hamburgers, lasagna, and I do love my veggies! Yes it is not the healthiest menu and I do try to stay away from all those fatty foods but I can indulge once in a while!
My 5 favorite tv shows would be; Friends, Hells Kitchen, CSI, Bones, and Everybody Loves Ray. I do own the complete series of Friends and Everybody Loves Ray.
My 5 favorite bands would be; Metallica, Guns N’ Roses, Chevelle, Shinedown, and Smashing Pumpkins. I love music. There are hundreds of bands that I just can’t think of at the moment.

-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 try soap making. It seems like fun.

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

List everyday, renew your items, join other sites to promote such as Facebook, Deviantart, Flickr, Myspace, and so on. It is also good to have a little paid advertising. I make lots of jewelry to for myself to wear and occasionally women will ask me where I get my jewelry. Always keep business cards on hand where ever you go; you just never know when you might need them. Make sure your photos are top notch. This is the first things potential buyers see and you want the picture to draw them in.

-3 etsy shops you just LOVE?

Hmm, it is so difficult to pick just three; I really do love hundreds of shops. Off the top pf my head…
http://www.etsy.com/shop/WowWall - this shop has awesome wall decals.
http://www.etsy.com/shop/mstrf - this shop has gorgeous modern furniture.
http://www.etsy.com/shop/bethanylorelle - this shop has gorgeous headbands and wedding items.

-One year from now, I hope...

...to have another 1,000 sales and perhaps be featured on the front page of Etsy. I know it’s a long shot but it would be awesome!
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Have an etsy shop with over 300 sales and want to be a featured seller? Contact me at phletcher@gmail.com
As always, thanks for reading :)

Wednesday, July 28, 2010

#176 unofficial etsy featured seller - MiniCyn



#176 unofficial etsy featured seller - MiniCyn
Date joined etsy- 4/7/09
Sales to date - 380

-Give us some basic info about you: name, where you live, kids/pets, favorite ice cream flavor, etc.

In a nutshell, my name is Cynthia aka Cynth, Cynbad, Cynthetiser. Ever since our last dog chihuahua 'handsome' died I haven't been able to let go, so I tend to run in to poles whenever I see one on the street. Last week, I ran into a big sweaty guy's chest... my husband just stood there and laughed I didn't even get a tissue or anything. Speaking of my German hubby, he is the reason why I now live in Paris, France. We moved from Australia a year ago because he missed the cold climate?! Anyway, here we are now. I'm originally from Malaysia but my family immigrated to New Zealand when I was a wee chickadee, it's been almost 3 decades since. That I think was the start of my zest for the wanderlust, and that's how I met my partner on one of my many back-packing trips around the world.

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

An Average day for me starts quite simply the minute my hubby leaves for work 'cause it'll definitely be around half 7am.; everything from checking email, sales, convos, make jewelry, design, go to post office, buy supplies etc. I use to work 'til the night when it first started, I felt a lot of attention needed to be put into it just as much as I did for my previous work... it never seemed to stop! Nowadays on weekends, we try and explore Paris and I not to go near my jewelry bench!

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

I wouldn't say I was 'creative' as such, it was just part of everyday play/life. Mum use to like showing me how to make things from scratch from anything like a pencil case to baking our first short bread biscuits! Mum was also working full-time(next door) so that has taught me to juggle many projects in one go. My favorite past time was actually to simply draw from real life pictures with pencil and read horror books.

-What made you want to start selling on etsy?

I was a Graphic designer/Illustrator by trade before Etsy for 14 years and a jeweler before that for just 2 years. When we moved to France I thought it'll be a great idea to change career as I cannot imagine being an employee again let alone applying for a job in French. I had a hobby Etsy shop though before starting Minicyn for destashing jewelry I made for fun. Whilst I started to learn about the ins and outs of online selling I became confident that this could be a potential portal for my next career move, combine with independence and sans office politics what more can a sane person need!

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

I can't remember when exactly, but I do remember getting very excited when it happened as anyone would.
-Top 5 favorite foods, tv shows, and bands?

Any food with garlic or chili's got my name on it oh yeah. Just as well my teeth are short and small so I'm no good as a carnivor, love my veges, and BIG on seafood. I don't have a sweet tooth hmmm only on occasion. Food is one of the top 3 things that my partner and I have in common too, we're both epicureans by heart and love cooking.
I've never been to much of a TV watcher, though I get a kick from shows like Six feet under, Dexter, make-overs etc. Was into bands and music buying when I was in NZ and Australia but life in Paris so far has taken a different turn for me, so that's been put on the back burner whilst the french radio plays on. Here's a small eclectic list of bands I use to dig; Holly Golightly, Crystal Castles, The Roots, Nick Cave, Nightmares On Wax, Roy Ayers, Thievery Corporation just to name a few. Some french pop bands I'm digging: French Cowboy, Christophe Mae, M etc.

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

Actually, I'd love to try my hands on up-cycling a vintage/antique old chair or cabinet when I get a proper work space one day.

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

First and foremost, know what you're promoting and to whom... really. Take a step back as a potential buyer and look at your own stall, ask yourself if you'd buy it? Be honest, if not why not? Have an overall direction of your business and ask yourself where you want to move on to next(if you're serious about it). From there, you'd know who your buyers are... picture your kind of buyers. Where would they be? Flickr? Blogs? What kind of Blogs etc. Promotion will then come naturally through an understanding of your product/market. Start with no budget I dare you, be creative!

-3 etsy shops you just LOVE?

I truly adore LOADS of Etsy shops, too many to mention. No doubt the ones for me are the ones who make the real effort to take lovely pictures to represent their wares and pride themselves with good craftsmanship is what I admire.

-One year from now, I hope...

.., to have a Medium to big studio/work-room and free of any office politics still!

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

Tuesday, July 27, 2010

#175 unofficial etsy featured seller - davieandchiyo

#175 unofficial etsy featured seller - davieandchiyo
Date joined etsy- 1/23/09
Sales to date - 968
Give us some basic info about you: name, where you live, kids/pets, favorite ice cream flavor, etc.

My name is Fumi Bull and I am the owner of Davie & Chiyo, a clutch and custom purse design company based in Vancouver, BC. I started this business with my sister, Himi, who is the sewing talent behind our clutches. We specialize in bridal designs, creating clutches for every member of the bridal party - brides, bridesmaids and flowergirls. We had never really planned on working in the bridal market - it just kind of found us.

Describe an average day in life of "you".

My day always starts with emails, whether I'm checking it on my laptop in the morning or on my Blackberry when I'm on the go. From there I usually catch up on Etsy conversations and emails, pay the bills and place supply orders online. The emails don't end there either, keeping up with an online shop means that my day is peppered with Etsy convos.

My sister comes over in the morning to start the work day and we begin processing orders - cutting the appropriate fabrics, sewing and packaging. These days there's always at least one trip to the post office to drop off outgoing packages. Depending on the day, there's always an errand or two to run, too. We're constantly at the fabric store, picking up more of the usual colours, matching wedding dress swatches and scoping out new patterns and colour trends.

With the majority of my day being work, I still try to squeeze in a few meals and a yoga session :)

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

I grew up in a very creative household. My dad had a passion for art and followed his dream of becoming a woodblock print maker. Having grown up with such creativity, I think it really translated to my interests, whether it was through dance, cooking, figure skating, sewing or art. Although my sister and I have never had any formal design training, we've always always been designing.

What made you want to start selling on etsy?

My sister first introduced me to Etsy. She initially sold hand-knit and crochet items to supplement her income as a stay-at-home mom. I saw her running her own shop, doing something that she loved and I found it very inspiring. I've always wanted to own my own business so Etsy seemed like a natural progression.

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


Surprisingly, it didn't actually take very long. From the day we joined Etsy as "Davie & Chiyo", it took a little over a week for our first sale. At the time, our shop was a little different - we sold small pouches and clutches - so our first sale was for a couple of eyeglass cases.
Top 5 favorite foods, tv shows, and bands?

Being half Japanese, naturally, I've always had a taste for Japanese food and my mom's home-cooking. However, growing up in city like Vancouver, I have developed a taste for other ethnic foods. Vancouver is every foodie's dream - there is such diverse ethnic cuisine from every country in the world. Some of my favourites are Indian, Thai and Italian.

My favourite TV shows are pretty much anything on the W Network. They feature anything from design shows to reality TV on dysfunctional families - I love it all!

Music is a big part of my work environment. My laptop is always on with my favourite playlist. Right now I am listening to a lot of Coldplay.

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


I love cooking, so I'd definitely like to become more adventurous with cooking other ethnic foods. Nothing is more rewarding than a meal that you've cooked yourself.

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

The online community is your best friend. Make connections and get featured by bloggers and websites with interests similar to your own. You'll find that your name gets out faster than you'd expect and you make great connections in the process.

3 etsy shops you just LOVE?

sycamorestreetpress - Amazing prints! I wish I could find more reasons to buy greeting cards.
Joannarutter - Such cute jewelry - it's difficult to not want everything in this shop.
redsofa - Completely unique and whimsical jewelry. I absolutely love the crab claws!

One year from now, I hope...

...to be doing exactly this - running my business, except much bigger! I have big dreams for Davie & Chiyo - one day everyone will know us by name.

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

Monday, July 26, 2010

#174 unofficial etsy featured seller - TheFancyLamb

#174 unofficial etsy featured seller - TheFancyLamb
Date joined etsy- 1/29/09
Sales to date - 664-Give us some basic info about you: name, where you live, kids/pets, favorite ice cream flavor, etc.

My name is Robin. I live in a 1920s bungalow in St. Louis, MO with my husband and my 3 rambunctious dogs -- my boys (all 4 of them!) are always getting into all kinds of trouble. I like Diet Mountain Dew, the ocean, live music, and metal zippers, among other things.

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

The Fancy Lamb is my full-time job so, although every day is a bit different, each day is usually all-consumed with working. My favorite type of day is filled with treasure-hunting all over the city: estate sales, thrift shops, antique malls...you get the idea. Other days I might spend doing a photo shoot, listing new things in my shop, or working on some handmade goodies like my vintage book journals ( http://www.etsy.com/shop/TheFancyLamb?section_id=6021196 ). I work pretty much 24/7 and rarely take a day off, but it doesn't feel like work! I'm doing things I enjoy doing and on my own terms.

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

Growing up, I was always surrounded by projects and "making." My mom sewed her own clothes when she was younger. My grandma was in love with photography. My stepmom decked me out in the most elaborate Halloween costumes. My dad painted, sculpted, built things, and dabbled in lots of different mediums. Throughout it all, I tried all kinds of different things too. I remember, at 13 years old, I would settle in front of the TV in the evening with my latest cross-stitch project!

-What made you want to start selling on etsy?

Actually, I think I did things backwards from most people... Rather than testing the waters on Etsy and then expanding the business, I started out doing craft shows. (I have a few handmade product lines including my vintage book journals, sewn goods from vintage fabric, and some other odds and ends which I occasionally list on Etsy). When I had leftover inventory from my shows, I decided to list it on Etsy. It snowballed from there, and I also started listing some unaltered vintage pieces. Gradually, my shop has evolved into one that is primarily vintage, but I still do a few local craft shows each year.

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

Wow, I had to look this one up! And I'm quite surprised to report that my first sale came 1 day after my first listings went up. However it didn't all come easily -- the first few months, my shop was incredibly slow and it was a major uphill climb to achieve steady sales. Finally, I got into a groove where I was able to list new items 4-5 days a week. Keeping my shop fresh and active has been the most successful tactic for generating and maintaining business.
-Top 5 favorite foods, tv shows, and bands?

Food: sushi (specifically, philly rolls), chocolate (duh!), tiramisu, Jack-In-The-Box tacos, and pesto (super healthy list, right?)
TV shows: Mad Men, Dexter, Big Brother (so excited a new season just started!), and most trashy reality TV shows
Bands: This is so hard to narrow down! My number 1 favorite band is Wilco. Other than that, I'll just list the most recent shows I saw: Blitzen Trapper, Edward Sharpe and The Magnetic Zeroes, The Black Keys, and The Dead Weather

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

Yes, yes, and yes. I like to try it all. :)

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

In addition to keeping your shop well-stocked and fresh, getting involved in the Etsy community is so important! I have met so many wonderful Etsy friends through the teams I'm on, Twitter ( http://www.twitter.com/TheFancyLamb ), making treasuries, and just generally reaching out to get to know people. Self-promotion is over-rated, but if you scratch other peoples' backs, they'll scratch yours. Karma will always take care of you.

-3 etsy shops you just LOVE?

Allen Company Inc.
Elle Moss
Miniature Rhino

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

1500. Don't hold me to that though!





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

Sunday, July 25, 2010

#173 unofficial etsy featured seller - StudioCherie

#173 unofficial etsy featured seller - StudioCherie
Date joined etsy- 4/22/08
Sales to date - 1878
-Give us some basic info about you: name, where you live, kids/pets, favorite ice cream flavor, etc.

I grew up in Seattle, and we frequently visit family there. I live with my husband and our three children in Eastern Washington. Spokane is a lot like Seattle only more sun and less traffic. I like Tully's coffee. When I want to treat myself, I go for chocolate Tillamook ice cream, sometimes with a little Frangelico on top. I have a secret love-hate relationship with Nordstrom Rack. My man and my kids think I am a total nutcase, but they wouldn't have it any other way. We have no idea what "normal" looks like.

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

We don't know "average" either. LOL I try to make something everyday. My husband wishes it was dinner more often. I sew, I photograph, I write, I draw, I read, I send emails, all in no particular order. Sometimes I dream of having a staff. Sometimes I wonder how much more I could do if I were organized.

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

I have always been more expressive with my hands than verbally. How to describe my first art project? Let's just say it was followed by a full day of cleaning of my crib and my walls. If I had been able to talk, I probably would have said "Hey, I need some finger paint up in here." My mom kept me well supplied after that. Growing up, I sat at my mothers feet as she sewed for herself. I can still remember my favorite garments and wishing I was big enough to wear them too. I used to take the scraps and make clothes for my Barbie. In 6th grade I made a small quilt, and in 7th grade I started sewing my own clothes.

-What made you want to start selling on etsy?

I never wanted to be a manufacturer so I spent some time looking into having my designs made elsewhere. What I found was a business model that involved inventory, sales reps, trade shows, and a whole lot of paperwork and follow up that made my mind swim. I could get investment capital and hire those things out, but then I would be a boss and have a boss, neither of which appeal to me. I really just wanted to stay creative and license my ideas to other people. It was with licensing in mind that I took a look at Etsy. What I saw there was a built-in test market for my products (people who shop on Etsy could replace the function of trade shows and reps.) I also saw a grass roots licensing market for my patterns: people who sew and want to make money selling their creations. The PDF patterns make my ideas a concrete product that can be easily licensed. When someone buys a pattern from me, it comes with a cottage licensing agreement, so as long as they are making it themselves and mentioning me in their marketing materials, we are good. I am open to manufacturers for commercial licensing deals as well. Simplicity approached me to license my patterns for their catalog. My first Simplicity pattern is coming out in December. Frankly, that is a bigger deal than I was planning on for the patterns, so it is quite a thrill.

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

I started poking around in April of 2008, I listed a few things by mid June, and July 1st, I had my first sale - to someone in Tasmania, which was immensely exciting for me.
-Top 5 favorite foods, tv shows, and bands?

My favorite foods are in Seattle at Il Terrazzo Carmine, House of Hong, and a little Vietnamese Place off of Jackson. I don't have a TV, but I have long list of favorite movies. Music, I like a pretty wide range from The Clash, to the Gypsy Kings, to Pat Metheny. Country music makes me laugh, but I don't listen to it. Gospel music is awesome. My daughter and I get up and dance at the end of every movie. Credits music is always the best.

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

My dream is to spend a month in France with my good friend, Kathleen Cavender (kathleenCavender.com), learning plein air painting.

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

I don't have a blanket answer that could cover everyone on that. I think some items like jewelry and soap can be branded and well represented at local boutiques to gain a following. Gaining a following online is just plain tough for anyone. All you can do is make the best product you can so that word gets around when you do get customers. Photos are 99% of the online shopping experience with accurate or enticing descriptions being the other 11% (Yes, I know that adds up to more than 100% - you have to be willing to give it 110%.)

-3 etsy shops you just LOVE?

I hate that you limit it to 3, because I have so many friends on Etsy. I am going to name 2 that I consider to be emerging talent, artists whose work you should collect now: Sarahndippity, and PlanetJanetArt. And the Vintage seller who inspires me with her curation talent is Westbournegrove. That left out 298 of my best friends.

-One year from now...

Another licensing deal or two, 12 more patterns, a slipcovering video tutorial, and a clothing line. Does that sound ambitious?



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

Saturday, July 24, 2010

#172 unofficial etsy featured seller - cheapdatejewelry

#172 unofficial etsy featured seller - cheapdatejewelry
Date joined etsy- 7/23/07
Sales to date - 311-Give us some basic info about you: name, where you live, kids/pets, favorite ice cream flavor, etc.

My name is Jessi Welch. I live minutes outside of Boston with my rocker husband Brian, my two rat terriers Tarzan and Nelson and we have a baby girl on the way! Being pregnant ice cream is by far my favorite topic but I keep it simple, Chocolate and Vanilla. Nom.

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

I wake up Monday – Friday early early and work as a financial analyst for two local hospitals. I love my job. Yeah..i admit it. Throughout the day I do the following
-stare at spreadsheets and do math
-chew the fat at the water cooler with my co-workers
-obsessively check etsy
-catch up on my favorite blogs
-exchange e-mails with Brian..we chat a lot
-think about what to cook for dinner
After work I fill orders, sit at my desk and create to restock my jewelry and think about new designs.
Being almost 8mths pregnant I’m in bed by 8:30 and then I do it all over again the next day.

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

I feel like I was creative, but it wasn’t so much about me, but my mom and sister. They are the most creative, inspiring people I know. My mom comes from a really artist family and she is busting at the seams with talent. She did a really great job raising my sister and I to think outside of the box and to approach everything from personal problems, school to relationships in a creative manner and it always worked like a charm. My sister was constantly creating things and really good at turning ordinary into amazing. She still is. I was inspired by that and started making and maybe my first creative outlet was making beaded jewelry for me and friends (like most little girls) and it just stuck with me.

-What made you want to start selling on etsy?

Again, thanks to my sister she told me about Etsy. I had been making jewelry and planned on making my own website. I was only selling my goods at a few craft shows but I wanted more. I didn’t have the money to pay for the type of website I really wanted, and since Etsy’s site does 100% of the work for you I thought it was too good to not take advantage of.

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

Not long thanks to generous friends!
-Top 5 favorite foods, tv shows, and bands?

I love questions like this. My taste varies by season..but right now

Foods:
Pizza
Ramen soup from Wagamama (and only Wagamama)
Caramel candy
Leonardo Da Veggie sandwich from Bruegger's
Eggplant..prepared any possible way

TV Shows:
This one is easy. Not much of a TV watcher. But when there is a Twin Peaks re-run on I’m glued to the screen.

Bands:
Bad Brains
Plasmatics
Ella Fitzgerald
Radio Head
Barroness

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

Secretly I’ve always wanted to learn to play the drums. We have a drum set up in our basement (my husband is a guitarist and drummer) and I occasionally sit at the kit and dream of my all girl rock band.

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

Don’t wait for people to find you. You need to get out there (facebook fan page, twitter, Merchant Circle..etc) and make connections. One of the best things I did (and it was free) was to reach out to my favorite blogs that feature handmade artists. I told them about myself and my jewelry and asked to be featured. Sometimes it works and sometimes it doesn’t but it was a great way to get exposure.

-3 etsy shops you just LOVE?

http://www.etsy.com/shop/inaluxe the hippest in art and stationary. I’ve got my eye on some prints for the nursery.
http://www.etsy.com/shop/emmaklingbeil I own a ton of Emma’s art. It’s amazing. She is so talented.
http://www.etsy.com/shop/matteart Another artist and I own a bunch of his work. Can you tell I’m an Etsy Art hoarder?

-One year from now, I hope...

Motivate myself to organize my business for more whole sale work. I would love to get my line in more stores to the point where I’m Wholesaling 80% of my business and maintain 20% of sales online. Another goal is to get my logo and branding finally nailed down!



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

Friday, July 23, 2010

#171 unofficial etsy featured seller - Venbead

#171 unofficial etsy featured seller - Venbead
Date joined etsy- 5/15/07
Sales to date - 1581Give us some basic info about you: name, where you live, kids/pets, favorite ice cream flavor, etc.

My name is Paula McDonough and I am The Venerable Bead. I am a wife and mother of two beautiful smart and creative kids ages 12 and 9. By day I am a Master's level Clinical Social Worker and by night I play with fire. I live a low carb lifestyle so ice cream isn't on the meal plan but if I were to cheat I would have to say that cookie dough would be on the top of my list.
-Describe an average day in life of "you".

The average day that is my life is a balancing act in the art of multitasking. I balance work, motherhood, household responsibilities and errands while still finding time in the later hours of the day to create. I work 3 days a week so I spend my 2 mornings off working on photographing new work and listing new items on Etsy.
-Were you creative growing up/what did you enjoy doing?

Growing up, most kids in my neighborhood had lemonade stands. I tried selling painted rocks and gave the lemonade away just to get people to stop and look at my creations. Things haven’t changed that much.
There has not been a time when I wasn't making something. I remember constructing Barbie furniture out of fabric scraps and empty soup cans.
In highschool and college it was all about charcoal drawing. When my kids were very little I was a scrapbooking maniac.
I’ve had a love affair with bead and jewelry designing since 1994. It started with polymer clay and moved into semi-precious gems and silver. The glass bug hit in early 2005 while I was reading a magazine article about a borosilicate bead artist from New Zealand, Emily Lake, who started glassing in her 40's. I had never seen borosilicate glass before but I felt drawn to it. After that, I started buying boro beads from self representing artists to incorporate into my name bracelets. Then it occurred to me that I could probably learn how to make them myself. In the spring of 2005 I took a wonderful nine week lampworking class at the Worcester Center for Crafts in Worcester Massachusetts taught by the very talented Jennifer Geldard and in July 2005 I set up a glass studio in my home.

-What made you want to start selling on etsy?

Up until I found Etsy in the Spring of 2007 I was only selling locally at art shows and home parties. Etsy has spread The Venerable Bead’s designs globally to customers who truly appreciate the talent and the time involved in the craft. That customer means everything to me and I am so happy to have found her!

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

I listed my first items in May of 2007 and I waited all summer before my first item sold. I thought selling on Etsy was a passive activity. You list and wait. I was wrong. It wasn't until I realized that in order to be found on Etsy you needed to list new items or relist current items several times a day that things started to take off. I also realized there was a whole community of sellers outside myself and I could harness their success and make it my own by investigating how to improve my shop and market myself outside of etsy.

-Top 5 favorite foods, tv shows, and bands?

food:
grilled chicken Caesar salad no croutons
bunless cheeseburger well done
diet coke (not really a food but still nectar of the gods)
steamed broccoli with garlic salt and butter
fresh berries

tv shows
I have no time for tv but I do have a dvr so when american idol is on I record it. I also record csi miami and the big bang theory

Band: my favorite band is Blue October. In fact last August I attended a concert in NH and I impulsively decided that I needed to give the lead singer Justin Firstenfeld the beaded skeleton key I was wearing (one I, of course, had made). I pushed my way up to center stage and presented it to him during the performance and he took it and put it on and wore it for the whole show. It was a total rush!
-Is there anything you'd like to try your hand at doing? Knitting, baking, soap making, wood working, an instrument, etc.

I had two things I wanted to learn to do beyond the glass and in the past year I have learned to do both. Metalsmithing and enameling. I need more practice in both but I am so happy to be able to add these skills to my repertoire. It makes the sometimes tricky task of turning lampworked beads into jewelry easier and incredibly more beautiful.

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

List or relist every day. Join an Etsy street team and network like crazy. Collaborate with other artists and cross promote.
Take a good hard look at your Etsy shop and continue to evolve. Ask a successful Etsian to give you a shop critique. Learn to take better pictures and invest in a GOOD camera with a GOOD macro lens very early on. In fact it should be one of the first purchases you make. Then learn how to use it. If your pictures are good you will land in treasuries and on blogs. Learn to make treasuries too and showcase the beautiful work of other Etsians. They will be some of your best customers! Trust me I do all of my holiday and birthday shopping on etsy now. Get a facebook, a flickr, and twitter account and learn to use them. If you have time for a blog start one.

-3 etsy shops you just LOVE?

Just 3? oh dear
seafinddesigns.etsy.com
pinklemonadeboutique.etsy.com
pogoshop.etsy.com

-One year from now, I hope...

I am still able to balance it all because life is very good right now


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

Thursday, July 22, 2010

#170 unofficial etsy featured seller - WilliamDohman

#170 unofficial etsy featured seller - WilliamDohman
Date joined etsy- 2/20/08
Sales to date - 895
-Give us some basic info about you: name, where you live, kids/pets, favorite ice cream flavor, etc.

My name is William Dohman, and I live in St. Paul with my wife, Katie, and our
cockapoo, Molly. We all love ice cream in our household, including our dog…Haagen
Dazs and Ben & Jerry have a permanent, rotating-flavor spot in our freezer.

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

The average day in the life of me:
I work. A lot. I have a day job as an architect, and at night and on the weekends, I’m
running the Etsy shop. So a typical day includes working my day job, coming home and
processing orders, and then catching a few minutes of TV with my wife (right now we’re
watching Dexter on Netflix) before going to bed and starting all over again. My wife is
joining in the Etsy shop with me, so she’ll be helping with communications, packaging,
and some creative work.

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

My mom found that an effective way to keep me quiet and occupied for a while was
to give me a set of Legos. Little did she know that it might have launched my career
as an architect! I was always building forts as a kid, too. I played around in my dad’s
wood shop, and my mom was always sewing and crafting. It was just what we did.
What made you want to start selling on Etsy?
I started as a hobby and to sell my travel photography. I wanted other people to see some
places they may not go to, or revisit places they’ve been. Then it evolved into prints. One
Christmas, I made my wife a wooden sign for a gift, and so suddenly they ended up in the
shop, too. Then the robots… it’s been an evolving process.

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

I joined Etsy Feb. 20, 2008, with just my photos. My first sale was March 3,
so I’m grateful I didn't have to wait too long to feel encouraged to keep going!

Top 5s
Favorite foods:
Bacon
Chocolate
Ribs
Oranges
Sugar Snap Peas

TV Shows:
Seinfeld
NewsRadio
LOST
Project Runway
Top Chef

Bands:
The Black Keys
Rage Against the Machine
Muse
Weezer
On recent rotation: MGMT

Is there anything you'd like to try your hand at doing?

I’d like to try welding. Picking up fly fishing might help give me a time-out from
working. Or having a garden. Or sculpting. But I have pretty limited time as it is, so who
knows when I’ll get to picking up another hobby! My wife is considering making a foray
into soapmaking.

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

The best product is the best marketing. If you have a great product, it fills a need or
desire, and it tends to market itself. Focus on creating a great product rather than pushing
a poor product. Contact blogs that you’re interested in and get inspiration from and see if
they want to feature it—but only if you think your product will be a good fit among the
mix they regularly feature.

Shops I love:

Strawberryluna

Joom
Elementclaystudio
Byrdandbelle
Mincingmockingbird

One year from now, I hope…

I have a better balance between my career and my Etsy
shop and my family. My wife is joining me and we’re rebranding and relaunching the
shop soon. I hope we find that it’s a good, solid partnership, added to our marriage, and
that the shop grows accordingly as we continually refine processes and offerings, and add
new products to the shop.


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

Wednesday, July 21, 2010

#169 unofficial etsy featured seller - LBrandt

#169 unofficial etsy featured seller - LBrandt
Date joined etsy- 1/6/08
Sales to date - 540-Give us some basic info about you: name, where you live, kids/pets, favorite ice cream flavor, etc.

Hi all! I am Lindsay Brandt. My little family of five and our Vizsla dog just moved from Arizona to Utah. I am a proud wife of a serving solider. Love Music, photography, miniatures, and modern architecture.

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

I slide. I do monkey bars. I merry-go-round. I bike ride. I explore. I teach. I cook. I clean. I chauffeur. I doctor. I write. I listen. I photograph. I account. I create. I love... all because I get to be a mother. It’s all in tackling another day’s adventures. My three little ones, 6 years and under, are the ones who fill my days with excitement and fresh new possibilities. They LOVE my creations.

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

I spent numerous childhood summers sitting at a card table. My sales consisted of: handmade pixie sticks, otter pops, creepy crawlers, and boondoggle bookmarks (convo me if you are interested in any :D I was eager for success. My parents encouraged my persistence in all entrepreneurial endeavors. When I stumbled upon Etsy, my mind went into a blitz! I knew then that I had to get a shop going full speed. It was certainly an opportunity come true!
-How long did it take for you to get your first sale on etsy?

I remember calling my husband in pure excitement when that first sale came. It happened about a week after opening up shop.

-Top 5 favorite foods, tv shows, and bands?

My top (random) five foods would have to be See's candies, avocados, garden tomatoes, garden strawberries, and peaches.
Top 5 movies: Big fish, The Nightmare Before Christmas, 500 days of summer, Zoolander, Emperor's New Groove.
Top 5 bands: Coldplay, Sting, Sarah Mclachlan, Rascal flatts, Peter Cetera

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

Being that my top priority at this point in time is my kids, I have a list going of all the things I plan try. Ceramics, sewing, photography, living off the grid, taking up violin, designing modern miniatures and children's clothing, and writing are a few on the list. :)



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

Try your best to make your shop look somewhat professional. In the forums I often read about the consequences of poor banner design and the lack of product representation, (which is especially hard for me.) It needs to be picturesque and thematic. When I finally listened, I noticed a rise in sales. A disheveled shop is awfully uninviting. Blog, facebook, twitter, are all very big in helping people notice you.

3 etsy shops you just LOVE?

oh boy! If there is SO much talent on Etsy that If I HAD to narrow it down to just three, I might say..
Smashing
element clay stuido
Anikaeaster

-One year from now, I hope...

In one year I hope to be alive and still sane following my love's deployment. :)


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

Tuesday, July 20, 2010

#168 unofficial etsy featured seller - ozetta

#168 unofficial etsy featured seller - ozetta
Date joined etsy- 8/27/08
Sales to date - 572-Give us some basic info about you: name, where you live, kids/pets, favorite ice cream flavor, etc.

Hi everyone! I’m Hailey from Ozetta handmade. I live in a small town in Oklahoma where the fall and winter months mean everything to me. I married my high school sweetheart, Nick and we were blessed in October with a little boy, Easton Hank. I have a weakness and it’s called Cadbury Eggs. Thank goodness I only buy them around Easter.

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

My day generally starts off by reading e-mails, conversations, and checking my sold items. I eat breakfast which is Life Cinnamon cereal…always. Get ready for the day. Package all orders from the previous day. Make a trip to the Post Office and drop them off. Then I go home and work on orders or new things the rest of the day. I always cook dinner for my husband. I know the first thing he would want after a long day of working outside is a hot dinner. I try to fit reading in, but during my busy months this has proven to be impossible. I love taking pictures and try to blog every day. And as any mother knows, between, during, and after all of these things, I am tending to my little guy.

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

Yes, I was always the creative one in the family. I started crocheting when I was ten years old, but took a long break from it and picked up knitting. However, crocheting is my true passion now. I have always enjoyed reading, writing, and anything to do with yarn.

-What made you want to start selling on etsy?

Ozetta handmade knits is inspired from my great grandmother who passed away in May of 2007. My grandmother taught me how to crochet, among many other things, and most importantly she showed me to lead by her example in life and that was to do what makes me happy. So I did just that. A little after a year my etsy shop had been opened, I quit my “day job” and started Ozetta full-time. Ozetta derives from my grandmother’s middle name and I thought the best way to be constantly reminded of her, was to do what she loved doing as well. And commemorate her by using her beautiful name. I know she would be proud.

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

I listed my first few items on October 12 and sold my first ozetta cowl on October 15.


-Top 5 favorite foods, tv shows, and bands?

Foods
Cereal, Watermelon, Squash, Sandwiches, and Cheese
TV Shows
LOST, Big Brother, Americas Next Top Model, Project Runway, and Grey’s Anatomy
Bands
Bon Iver, Mumford & Sons, Third Day, A Fine Frenzy, and David Crowder Band

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

I would love to learn to sew. I have tried many times, but it’s hard when you don’t have someone to really show you. It takes a lot of patience to learn and I applaud anyone who knows how.

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

Take good pictures. This is probably the biggest part of any sale and helps with the amount of people that visit your shop. Make sure your shop looks organized, clean, and subtle. Also, try to re-list things constantly. Answer conversations immediately. There are many things that make up running a shop successfully, but if you truly love what you do, the rest is history.

-3 etsy shops you just LOVE?

Just three?! Agh! Well, of course my mom’s shop cocoabeans.etsy.com, midwestfinds.etsy.com, and theblackapple.etsy.com

-One year from now, I hope...

To still be successful with my shop and sales!


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

Monday, July 19, 2010

#167 unofficial etsy featured seller - Goobeetsa

#167 unofficial etsy featured seller - Goobeetsa
Date joined etsy- 5/27/07
Sales to date - 398
Give us some basic info about you: name, where you live, kids/pets, favorite ice cream flavor, etc.

My name is Brian Gubicza. I live with my wife, Jen in Beverly,MA on Boston's North Shore. My Current favorite Ice Cream Flavor is Snickers.

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

Most mornings are spent packaging/mailing orders.
I do my illustration work during the day, and in the evening hours I trace and cut animals for my
wife's plush business. We try to take a nice long walk every evening to escape our computers.

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

I was very creative as a child. My dream was to be a cartoonist.
Most days I drew and constructed things with which to play.
I even once built a rudimentary soap box racer out of an old picnic table and some lawn mower wheels. It was great on steep hills.

-What made you want to start selling on etsy?

I had had some success selling my work in a few art shows, and decided to offer my work to a much larger audience.

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

If I remember correctly, It took (1) week to sell an item.

-Top 5 favorite foods, tv shows, and bands?

Foods

Earl Grey Tea
Corned Beef Reuben (on rye)
Pad Thai
Chocolate Cake!

TV Shows

X-Files
Poirot
Bones
Fawlty Towers
Rocko's Modern Life

Music

John Williams
Bernard Herrmann
David Arnold
Danny Elfman
Hans Zimmer

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

I compose music and enjoy cooking, but I would really love to make more of
a study of both.

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

Exposure.
If you have a product people will enjoy seeing and buying.
Show it to them. Research your target audience and attend fairs

Offering your work for consignment /wholesale, (in shops that you respect) is a great way to expand the size of your audience.

Create a free series of well-made tutorials; or discuss your process. Get everyone interested!

Don't take a lack of sales personally. There are slow times (especially summer). Use that time for work and research.

-3 etsy shops you just LOVE?

http://www.etsy.com/shop/Zooguu

http://www.etsy.com/shop/reneenault

http://www.etsy.com/shop/chromalab

-One year from now, I hope...

to be making art and living happily with my wife.
--
Have an etsy shop with over 300 sales and want to be a featured seller? Contact me at phletcher@gmail.com
As always, thanks for reading :)

Friday, July 16, 2010

#166 unofficial etsy featured seller - shizendesigns

#166 unofficial etsy featured seller - shizendesigns
Date joined etsy- 5/16/08
Sales to date - 489-Give us some basic info about you: name, where you live, kids/pets, favorite ice cream flavor, etc.
My name is Mieko Takahashi. I grew up in Tokyo. I moved to the US for college in 1992. After graduation, I worked as a CPA for 10 years until I realized there is much more to life than working like a mad woman trying to occupy the corner office someday. Now I run a small business consulting practice from my corner office at home. I am also studying to become a registered dietitian. I juggle being a jewelry designer, a CPA and a nutrition student daily. My
life can get a bit complicated and confusing at times. I live in Bellingham, Washington with my husband Dave, two cats and a dog. For fun, I love reading a spy novel, watching a spy movie, gardening, kayaking, and taking a long walk with my 4-year-old Bichon Frise Kumo. As for my Etsy shop, I sell handcrafted silver jewelry under the name of “shizendesigns” (www.shizendesigns.etsy.com). Shizen is a Japanese word for nature. I love making flowers and
other natural objects into jewelry.

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

1. I get up around 7AM. First thing I do is to take Kumo out for a walk.
2. Since last summer when I became a student, I usually have classes in the morning. Before and/or after class, I run errands.
3. I spend the afternoon doing bookkeeping for my clients or making jewelry to fill orders.
4. After dinner, I make jewelry or do some marketing activities, like tweeting, posting new items on Facebook, and writing a blog post. Or just hang out with my husband and watch a movie on Netflix.
5. I try to squeeze in studying in between the other activities. That is why I am in a complete panic mode the night before exams to catch up on studying which I often fall behind.
6. I’d like to be in bed by 10PM to read a little bit before I fall asleep around 11PM, but I often stay up much later. Ever since I’ve started school last summer, I have become a night owl.
Wow, when I list my usual activities like this, it doesn’t look as chaotic as it feels when I am actually doing these things!

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

Yes, I always enjoyed making things as long as I can remember. Throughout all of my school years in Japan, I did many forms of art. You name it. Drawing, painting (oil, water), metal etching, woodblock print making, woodworking, enameling, sewing, knitting, crocheting, weaving, and pottery making. I enjoyed all of them, but in particular, I enjoyed print making in both etched metal and woodblock.

-What made you want to start selling on etsy?

I started beading in 2003 using Swarovski crystals, semi-precious stone and metal beads. It was just for fun at the beginning. I wore what I made but also gave them away to my friends and family. Around the time I left my last job as a CPA in 2005, I started a bridal jewelry line and started getting wholesale accounts. But soon I started to feel like I was working in my own little “sweat shop”. I think it was too much volume at one point. In the fall of 2006, I found a
metal jewelry working center in town called Pouncing Rain (www.pouncingrain.com) and I took a beginner’s jewelry course there. That’s how I got into making silver jewelry. Since then I have taken a few more classes at Pouncing Rain and also at other metal jewelry schools. I opened a seller’s account on Etsy in May of 2008, thinking that there have to be other folks who like simple, delicate and whimsical jewelry. I am a maker of things that are tiny and shiny.

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

I listed my first item on Etsy in the end of July, although I opened my account on May 16, 2008. My friends purchased the first two items I sold on Etsy. So, the first real sale came in on August 8, 2008. I still remember how excited I was when I received first order notification email from Etsy.
-Top 5 favorite foods, tv shows, and bands?

Foods I can’t live without:
Miso soup, rice, French fries, baked custard, Edamame

TV that I watch on a regular basis:
Modern Family, The Office, 24, Glee, Sex and the city

Bands that, I think, are totally groovy:
U2, Coldplay, The Rolling Stones, Earth, Wind & Fire, Fleetwood Mac

-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 make felted beads. Also, I’d like to start up making soap again, which I haven’t done since 2003.

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

I didn’t know what it meant to “re-list” until about one and half years after opening my Etsy shop. I used to wonder what those featured sellers were talking about when they said they re-list items everyday to promote their shop.
So, consequently, I only used to re-list items that expired. Haha, I’ve come a long way! Now, on average, I re-list five items a day. I highly recommend relisting at least one item a day. Also, good photography of your products is non-negotiable. I’ve come a long way on photography too. I used to take photos of my jewelry on the carpet! I am constantly working to improve my photographing skills. Without good photography, your products will not be able to catch customers’ (and very importantly Etsy Admins’) eyes.

-3 etsy shops you just LOVE?

This is a really hard question… but if I *have to* choose 3 shops:
Pearl Everlasting - Gorgeous gem stone jewelry with recycled metal. Absolutely beautiful.

Golly Bard – I just luuuuv her painting. So gentle, serene and delicate.

Bunny with a toolbelt – Her creations make me smile.

-One year from now, I hope....

I was very ill from the fall of 2008 from the spring of 2009. Thankfully, now I am healthy. So, I’d like to be healthy one year from now. Everything else is icing on the cake!


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

Thursday, July 15, 2010

#165 unofficial etsy featured seller - melabo

#165 unofficial etsy featured seller - melabo
Date joined etsy- 2/4/07
Sales to date - 1676
-Give us some basic info about you: name, where you live, kids/pets, favorite ice cream flavor, etc.

My name is Megan. I have a husband and a siamese kitty named “yoko”. I live in New Hampshire, the “Arkansas of New England”….. where for whatever reason the phase “live free or die” is just casual chit chat.

If I begin to think about ice cream, I will have to stop typing, walk down the hill, and get some.

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

During the school year I am an adjunct professor. This means that I have the summer off, in theory…..because I am an “adjunct” , this also means that financially there is no way for me to survive the summer. Thank goodness for art and etsy. I am always joking that I make art to support my teaching.

So, the summer is about enjoying the beautiful weather, and making stuff. This summer’s bad news is that I lost my studio. Operations have been make-shift at best. I am making my work on my porch and in my dining room, then driving 45 minutes to a kiln that I can use. One must suffer for one’s art and all, however I really will need a new solution to this soon. It has become a mental roadblock for me. I’m sure most of you guys have experienced the frustration of not being able to express the ideas floating around in your head. Bad.

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

Except for a brief power-hungry phase in fourth grade, I did always want to be some sort of artist. I loved building and collecting stuff. Lots of outside time collecting bark, berries, acorns, rocks. I was always attracted to artsy people and unusual lifestyles. I was shy, but I certainly had my eye on quirky outfits, interesting homes, people who had their own agenda. I wanted an agenda of my own. That led to art school and eventually to clay.

-What made you want to start selling on etsy?

I knew that the market for my work was not going to be found locally.
Etsy was one hundred percent on a whim. No grand plan. No forethought. And I do recommend this. Think less. Start the shop with what makes sense to you, and see where it heads. The etsy site is so easy to operate and it costs next to nothing. I did not begin thinking that I would be making wedding cake toppers. I just focused on what was interesting for me to make and then paid attention to what buyers were picking up on.

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

It was very quick, in little time etsy became a major part of my life.

……It was also very slow. Often people that do well on etsy, have already put tons of time and energy into developing their work. Hours in the studio. Many failed attempts at creating a unique vision. Lots of time collecting fancy art school degrees, and MFA degrees. This is the training ground that makes some of these initial start up etsy shops look that they just came together as easy as pie.

-Top 5 favorite foods, tv shows, and bands?

Oh no, thoughts of food again. These questions are making me hungry.

No TV in this house, but the interweb allows me to stay addicted to Mad Men, Parks & Rec, and 30 Rock. My husband will tell you that Sunday morning I will crack up over Saturday Night Live, inexplicably this show kills me.

He will also tell you that I have no music knowledge, does NPR count as a band??

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

I cannot stop sewing. Help! I turned a dress from Goodwill into a shirt this morning, and the pattern review website is so engaging these days.

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

1. First, love what you make and enjoy it. Take pride and craft your pieces well.

2. Then, take good photos. Help the buyer understand the material and scale of your work. Be consistent with the images from one listing to the next. Use all five views. The more I can ogle and examine a piece, the more certain I am I want to buy it.

3. Ship as quickly as you can. Folks are waiting. Keep them happy.

4. Take risks. Do not assume the buyer is not up for something strange.

5. List regularly. Spread the work out in the search so that you do not get buried on page 52.

6. Make good, unique, personal work…… and know that it is work. Not every moment with etsy is going to be creative bliss.

-3 etsy shops you just LOVE?

Oooo! This always changes. This week I am looking at:

Justin Durand drawings
www.etsy.com/shop/justindurand

Over the top jewels by Raquel Castillo
www.etsy.com/shop/raquelcastillo

A little siamese cat ornament by Vintage by Crystal
www.etsy.com/shop/VintagebyCrystal

-One year from now, I hope...

I need a studio. A nice private space, well lit, with the proper electricity. …..can anyone hear me out there? …karma….?


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