Sunday, May 30, 2010

Custom work on the fly (flap, flap)

Today's market brought my best sales day this season. Yay! I beat Saturday's sales by $5, plus they waived the booth fee due to a lack of traffic. But things are definitely looking up, and I feel remarkably positive about the coming weeks and months.

For one thing, a friend of mine named Steve Hillman made some kickin' earring stands out of black wire CD racks me and my man found while we were out thrifting. Huzzah! No more worries when the breeze picks up! I've spent many a windy afternoon chasing earrings pinned to biz cards as my "Come Fly With Me" winged earrings take themselves too seriously...

Also I made some neckforms out of poster board and spray paint. Crazy, right? I got the plan from Rena Klingenberg's site http://www.home-jewelry-business-success-tips.com/necklace-display.html but instead of covering with cloth or leather I used a textured spray paint. I like the finish, but where you score the folds the paint cracked and you can see yellow. (Next step I'm going to spray them inside and out, keeping them folded. They won't transport as well but they'll look nicer when up. I think.) But the market manager thought I'd bought them, so I guess they stand up to cursory inspection at very least.

But the best moments of the day came from customer interactions. The first was a young man who wanted custom rosaries for himself and his girlfriend. I got an idea of what he was looking for but he didn't have the deposit so we're going to come back next Sunday. In the meanwhile I'll be price-sleuthing to make sure I quote him the right amount!

The second awesome moment was when a gal admired my earrings but said they were too big for her. I asked what her favorite color was, grabbed a star charm and a leverback wire, and 30 seconds later asked, "Is this a good size?" She loved them. (Yay!) She mentioned liking orange and green while I was making her blue ones, and as she left (after exclaiming over the cute packaging I wrapped her purchase in) she said she'll see us next week. Guess that means I need to get some orange and green beads before Sunday!

So yeah... I had a great day at the market. And I can't wait for the sun - and the customers - to come out! Everybody dust off your dancing shoes and do your best sun boogie...

Saturday, May 29, 2010

New Venue

Tomorrow I'm vending at a market in Suquamish (near Poulsbo) and I wanted to extend an invite to anyone else who wants to join. It's 9-5 and the fee is $15 for a 10x10 space. This week they're adding a food vendor. Last week was the first market of the year; we didn't get much in sales (they reduced the booth fee because of it) but we did get a lot of traffic so I'm hoping tomorrow will be better.

Last week I was one of 2 jewelry vendors; there was a gal with gorgeous ceramic pots and a guy with handcarved walking sticks, among others. Some textile and paper crafts would make for a good blend, IMHO. It's pretty informal so if you want to join us send me a message and I'll hook you up. Also, your product does not all have to be made by you, so if you have some destash items or crafts made by friends/family, this could be the spot for you.

Cheers!

Tuesday, May 18, 2010

Meet Just be happy!

Hi lovelies!

I'd like to present you with the second installment of the featured section. Thank you so so much to sweet Alessandra who is the first person to turn in the survey!

Name: Alessandra
Location: Tacoma
Shop Name: Just Be Happy

Tell me a little bit about yourself: I'm a stay at home wife and mom to a beautiful 14 months old boy. I was born and raised in Brazil, I met my husband 7 years ago, I was in exchange program at the time, once I finished the program, I went back to my home country and my now husband went there to meet my family and to get to know the culture. We have been married for 5 years now.
I keep myself pretty busy, doing little side jobs here and there, but most of my time is taken by my boy.
When I have a spare time, I crochet, cook, bake, read and watch TV or play games with my husband.

Tell me a little bit about your shop: Crochet is my favorite passtime, I really love crocheting, it relaxes me and makes me happy. I love the feel of the fibers and the fact that I can create something from a ball of yarn. My shop is a collection of my favorite works, it's my way of sharing the love I have for crochet with other people.

Apart from being a Puget sound etsian, what else do you do? I am a mom - boy, that's a lot of work!, I do some computer work for my mother-in-law, keep a nice and clean house, etc.

Tell me about your creative process: inspiration for me comes from many different places, nature, colors, or even a need for something.

How do you promote your shop? I have a facebook fan page (www.facebook.com/justbehappycrochet), a blog (www.alessandrahayden.blogspot.com) and locally, I have been leaving postcard flyers at coffee shops, smalll shops, etc.

Any advice for someone new to etsy?
Don't give up! Read the esty sucess newsletters - lots of good ideas, and make sure to have good pictures!

Two items in your shop you would like me to showcase on the blog/facebook page:
Baby Pom-pom Hat 
(found here)

Cream Crochet Button Necklace: 

(found here)


Anything else you would like to share? I'm excited to be a member of this team, I hope to be able to make to the next meeting! 

Saturday, May 8, 2010

Meet OnBeyondZebra!



Name: Whitney
Location: Port Orchard although I spend 80% of my time in Bremerton
Shop Name: OnBeyondZebra

Tell me a little bit about yourself: Right now I’m going to school to be a teacher at the WWU Kitsap campus. I’m student teaching in a second grade classroom and that takes up a huge chunk of my time. When I’m not at school, I’m usually at home in my pajamas on the computer or watching Lost.

Tell me a little bit about your shop: OnBeyondZebra is the name of an awesome Dr. Seuss book. I bought a pair of snowcone stud earrings once and when I received them, I realized how easy it would be to make something like this on my own. I also knew that I would have to quit my job soon because it conflicted with my future school schedule. Etsy was the way I had planned to supplement my income while going to school full time. I have all sorts of novelty stud earrings, I’m always interested to see which of my earrings people chose to buy. I’m also working hard on being more subjective when buying supplies! What I may not like, others may love and vice versa.

Apart from being a Puget sound etsian, what else do you do? Aside from going to school, student teaching a few days a week and etsy, I also work part time at the Boys and Girls club in Port Orchard.

Tell me about your creative process: Arts and crafts have always been my outlet of choice. A lot of my inspiration comes from my students, my interests and my overall mood. I try hard to take a few hours each week to sit down and get stuff done but I find that I work best when I’m feeling stressed and making earrings or decorating orders is the way for me to unwind.

How do you promote your shop? Facebook, twitter, blogs and business cards. I also did the little black box for a few months but I just find now that I don’t have the time to sit and make that many samples.

Any advice for someone new to etsy?
Be Patient! Also, be active. The more you update/relist/renew the more sales you get. Oh and lastly! Ask for help. There are so many wonderful, experienced salers out there who are so willing to help.

Two items in your shop you would like me to showcase on the blog/facebook page:

Double Vanilla Cupcake earrings, one of my favorite treats. {Found here}

And French Fry Bobby Pins {found here}
 


Anything else you would like to share?
I’m working hard to get this team up and running. I know we’ll never be a huge team but I love meeting and supporting local artists and I think we can do great things!


Now, remember to send in your answers and the link to your items so you can be featured next :)

And the giver recieves...

Hooray! A local gal named Elea featured me in her fashion blog, "What to Wear from Barn to Evening!"

Read it here at http://barntoevening.blogspot.com

It's a very short mention but there it is. Apparently my "Giving Back" charity section caught her eye and she recognized me in her blog.

Now, I know that lots of people and organizations have different motives for supporting charities. Some want the benefit of good press: "We're not just a good bargain, we're also a good influence on the world." Some have a personal involvement: "My daughter died from this disease and I don't want any other mother to suffer that pain." Others just see that there's a need: "It's awful what's happening in that country; we ought to help them."

Personally, I act because we should help wherever we can. To put it very, very simply, there's lots of people that have more than enough, and there's lots of other people who have way too little. If those of us who have extra of something gave it to those who don't have enough, then they in fact would have enough.

It's my firm belief that if every one of us looks at what is truly "enough" for us, enough to make us truly happy and even comfortable, and then found ways to do good with the excess (be it food, money, time, possessions, or anything else) we would see very little need around us.

And in the end, the knowledge that I can have a positive impact on a problem like premature birth is plenty of compensation for my time and effort on their behalf.

But I have to admit, it feels good to get some press out of it! :-)

In a couple days I'll be listing the new "Giving Back" pretties for May and June, which will benefit the YWCA of Kitsap County. I look forward to reading and/or hearing what you think of them.

Wednesday, May 5, 2010

Be featured!

It's my plan to feature sellers on the blog/facebook page. This will give us an opportunity to not only learn more about each other but promote some of our items!

Just answer the questions into a message or email (don't forgot the links to the two items you want to showoff!) and send it back to me and I'll post it here and on the blog.

I look forward to getting to know all of you!
Whitney




Name:
Location:
Shop Name:

Tell me a little bit about yourself:

Tell me a little bit about your shop:

Apart from being a Puget sound etsian, what else do you do?

Tell me about your creative process:

How do you promote your shop?

Any advice for someone new to etsy?

Two items in your shop you would like me to showcase on the blog/facebook page:


Anything else you would like to share?