Wednesday, January 27, 2010

Happy Birthday Etsybloggers!!

As we end the first month of the new decade, help me wish Happy Birthday to these great Etsybloggers.

Tracy of Braggin' Rights Gift Shop Wednesday Jan 27





Lorraine of Trinity Designer Jewellery Monday Feb 1



Tokyo Vogue Tuesday Feb 2


Posted for the EtsyBloggers team by: Handmade By Sandi

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Friday, January 22, 2010

Friday Feature -- Nico Designs

This week's featured Etsy artist at Mama's Magic Studio, cross-posted here for your enjoyment, is also the Etsyblogger of the Month for January. Congratulations to Nico Designs!

Her shop is full of charming handmade goodness. I particularly like her pincushions. Isn't this "Be Mine" lovebird simply wonderful? Perfect for Valentine's Day!


And these pear "LOVE" pincushions are adorable too!

Enjoy the interview!




1. Please tell us about the items in your Etsy shop. What do you make? How did you learn your craft? What is involved in your creative process?

I currently have tote bags, home decor items and I am now adding art dolls. I am phasing out the bags to move into a different direction with the dolls and sculpture.

I first learned to sew as a child when a neighbor taught me how to make clothes for my Barbie dolls. Since then, I have taken a couple of quilting classes but I pretty much go by trial and error. I really enjoy the process of sketching an idea and seeing it unfold with fabric.



2. How did you get involved with Etsy?

Another mom told me about Etsy. I wanted another way to sell my bags and I thought it would be a great experience.



3. What inspires your creations?

The tote diaper bags were derived out of necessity. I needed a bag for my new baby at the time and one to my specifications. From there, people asked me if I could make them one.

My dolls were actually inspired from my husband's favorite chair. I was lost in thought while staring at the chair and I saw an image of a doll that I wanted to create. You know, how you see images in clouds? Now, I get lost in creating their images and stories to bring them to life.

For me, inspiration can come from anything, at any moment. I relish the spontaneous images that burst into my head which is normally at night.



4. What is your biggest challenge related to your Etsy shop?

My priorities are my children so I am not very good about adding more listings on a continual basis. I also took a long time off and I think that hurts when it comes to Etsy and your visibility.



5. What is your favorite item in your shop? Why is it your favorite?

My favorite item is currently Savannah the Horse Lover. She is a new art doll and I like her brilliant colors and fancy hat.



6. What advice do you have for other folks selling or buying on Etsy?

Well, there are other folks much more qualified to offer up advice. But here is my two cents: tell the world about your shop. Find some form of social marketing, whether it be blogging, Facebook, twitter, etc to share your craft and your items. (I am trying to get better at using Facebook).



7. Tell us two (or more) other interesting things about you.


I like to eat cold pizza for breakfast. I can be bribed with chocolate.



8. Where else can we find out more about you and/or your creations?


Blog: http://designsbynico.blogspot.com

Facebook Fan Page: http://www.facebook.com/pages/Waco-TX/Nico-Designs/124370671185







Posted for the EtsyBloggers team by: Mama's Magic Studio

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Internet Artisan Interview - InStitches

I love finding new artisans when surfing the net. Angel has all one of a kind pieces in her Etsy shop, all centered around paper. They're so creative, I know you'll get a kick out of them. I'm think her shop will interest people with all kinds of tastes. And I marvel at the way she is organized - hope to use some of her techniques in my studio. Angel's also introduced me to a lot of different sites online, from handmade venues to photo storage and sharing. Ever heard of Twitpic? It's a new one to me!

What's the name of your business/shop?


In Stitches

Do you have a registered domain name and/or a blog?
http://cardsinstitches.etsy.com
I am in the process of acquiring institches.com since it is currently owned by someone else.

What type of handmade products do you sell?

Paper products. I incorporating collage and hand-stitching techniques (embroidery, beading, etc) to create art cards that function as postcards, bookmarks, gift cards, announcements, invites, even puzzles. They are small pieces of fine art that, even though each is one of a kind, as a collective they are bound by common elements which work great individually or collected as a set.

Show us a piece you recently finished
An oversized origami card with lots of functions. Gift-tag, Baby announcement, baby shower invitation, bridal shower invitation (girl), Wedding/Save the date announcement. This comes in boy/girl, boy/boy, girl/girl, at a very competitive price with quantity discounts and customization available.

What are you working on right now? Any sketches?
My latest venture is leather-bound journals. I have completed one and now I am waiting for more materials to arrive in order to start production. Here is my prototype, using kidskin. The stitching n all my products is done by hand.

If you have a website or blog, what do you use for advertising? What do your avatars look like?

I am a bit of a newbie at this. So far I have purchased showcase spots on etsy , joined a local crafters group , posted announcements on twitter , participated at a local Artists and Fleas Market , created, printed and distributed fliers myself.
Which online selling vendors do you use? What do you like best about each one?
So far I am only active on etsy, but I am in the process of setting up shop at Deviant art and Society 6

Are you involved in social networking? What's your favorite and why? If you're not involved, you must have a good reason!
I am very active on facebook and twitter . I prefer promoting my business on twitter because it reaches a lot more people than just the ones who know me, it has introduced me to like-minded individuals and made new connections and leads.

All of us can use a helpful business hint once a week. What's yours?
As a graphic designer by trade, I have learned that appearance of a shop whether virtual or physical is very important in order to communicate a product efficiently. Make sure what you are trying to sell is expressed amicably with your product and what sets you apart from the rest.

Do you have a "modus operandi" for computing the price of a handmade object? Tell us your formula?
Since each item I create goes through a lot of steps, I determine my price-point by the amount of work and detail I complete within a certain amount of time. Then I decide how much my time is worth and price accordingly. Obviously, the more man-hours the more a piece is worth.

We'd love to see your little corner of the world, where you create.







In case you were wondering how I make my collages in a one-bedroom NYC apartment, well...here's a glimpse of my work desk. It's literally the size of the cutting mat [it's hard to see Angel's desk, so I went back to twitpic and found a photo in her home, getting ready for a fair]

Where do you see your artwork in one year? Any plans in the works?
Ultimately, I would like my creations to be carried in novelty shops, or even better, do editorial pieces for online or printed publications. I currently have an indie bookstore in New York's Lower East Side interested in carrying digital reproductions of my work. I am in negotiations with the specifics. It's a good start and great exposure.

It's the storybeader's turn! My favorite items are her origami tags. The collars are so cute, and when you get up close, you can appreciate the time and effort that she puts into all her work.

Posted for the EtsyBloggers team by: storybeader
See EtsyBloggers team membership requirements here: etsybloggers.com
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Wednesday, January 20, 2010

Etsyblogger Birthdays to Celebrate

Help me celebrate the birthdays of these Exciting Etsy Bloggers!! Spread the word!! Send your wishes!!

Sarah of Sarah Derangon/Looks Good Thursday Jan 21


Terry of Loma Prieta Pottery Friday Jan 22


Mrs. Woo of Felicia Woodhouse Saturday Jan 23


Kel Belle Designs Sunday Jan 24 - shop is on vacation


Judy of JN Originals Monday Jan 25






Posted for the EtsyBloggers team by: Handmade By Sandi

See EtsyBloggers team membership requirements here: etsybloggers.com

Got a blog? Love Etsy? Check us out!

Monday, January 18, 2010

January 18th EtsyBloggers Blog Carnival!

I am hosting my very first EtsyBloggers blog carnival! YAY! Of course the awesome EtsyBloggers came up with some wonderful submissions and you can read them all here on my blog!

Thank you to all who participated and I hope everyone enjoys reading them!
Sharla
BeadedTail

EtsyBloggers ROCK!!!!


Posted for the EtsyBloggers team by: BeadedTail

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Wednesday, January 13, 2010

Some great birthdays to celebrate!

We are almost half-way through January already! And whether you are having snow, rain, or balmy days, please go wish these delightful Etsybloggers a Happy Birthday. It will make their weather better!

Kim of Jewelry Works by Kim Wednesday Jan 13


Stephey of StephBaker Thursday Jan 14


Mysie Thursday Jan 14


Anitra of Coffee Pot People Thursday Jan 14




Deb from the Story Beader Monday Jan 18



Posted for the EtsyBloggers team by: Handmade By Sandi

See EtsyBloggers team membership requirements here: etsybloggers.com

Got a blog? Love Etsy? Check us out!

Friday, January 8, 2010

Internet Artisan Interview - TiLT Creations

It's the start of another year, and I'm still enjoying my interviews with internet artisans. Today we'll be talking to Theresa, who makes bags for her Etsy and Artfire shops, TiLT Creations. Theresa and I belong to the Etsybloggers Street Team, and speak to each other a few times a week, through our team thread and blogs. I bought an absolutely beautiful backpack from TiLT and decided to give it to my sister in law for Christmas. It was perfect for her and she absolutely loved it! Theresa's prices are reasonable, and you're in luck - she's just restocking her backpacks this month! WooHoo!

What's the name of your business/shop?

Tilt creations



Do you have a registered domain name and/or a blog?
oh yes...
http://www.tiltcreations.com will take you to my Etsy shop (as will http://tiltcreations.etsy.com)
Artfire: http://tiltcreations.artfire.com
Crafts, kids, home & life blog: http://tiltcreations.blogspot.com
Tilt's creations blog: http://tiltcreationstoo.blogspot.com
and my Tilt Treasures blog where I feature other artisans: http://tilttreasures.blogspot.com


What type of handmade products do you sell?
Handmade handbags, purses, totes, clutches, etc.



Show us a piece you recently finished
These are a couple custom orders I just finished up...
[to view the pick backpack, see here]



What are you working on right now? Any sketches?
I am still working on some custom orders. I am making 6 matching bags like this prototype:

I have many sketches of lap quilts I plan to make also. I do plan to make more table runners like this one, only longer in winter & spring colors.



If you have a website or blog, what do you use for advertising? What do your avatars look
like?

Advertising, well, I am not so good there. I do have Entrecard, which I do not use aggressively. I also have Project Wonderful ads & I am trying to utilize them more. There are various blogs (like Kind Over Matter) and sites like Craftopolis that I am trying out too.

Avatars...well, I have two Meez that I use for some sites & I change up the ones on Etsy & ArtFire depending on what I have in the store or the holiday/season.



If you have a website or blog, tell us about your favorite widget.
Hmmm...there is a cool new one for Etsy, a cart (it's on my blogs at the upper left). But I really like the Retweet and Linked Within the most I think.


Which online selling vendors do you use? What do you like best about each one?

Etsy and ArtFire. Etsy is great for the teams - I am on Etsybloggers, MICE, Big Damn Crafters & Etsymoms - and the size (which is also a con). ArtFire - I love the newness, the smaller size & the rapid response from the admin when it comes to fixing bugs & adding new features.

Are you involved in social networking? What's your favorite and why? If you're not involved, you must have a good reason!
Yes - Facebook, Twitter & Plurk are the big 3. I think Plurk is my fave b/c of the easy to view timeline of chats & ability to post elsewhere.


All of us can use a helpful business hint once a week. What's yours?
Give yourself a break. Both physically & mentally. Time off is so easy to overlook when you work from home. I know I have to remember to set things aside sometimes. And mentally - don't get discouraged by slow months or negative people - both will always be there. As long as you love what you do - keep doing it.

Do you have a "modus operandi" for computing the price of a handmade object? Tell us your formula?

I use an average of three different formulas...and then I just ballpark it after that based on what I see elsewhere & what I think will actually sell.
btw, the formulas:
wholesale: (matl + labor) x 150% and matl/25% and (matl x 2) + labor + OH
retail: w.s. x 100% and matl/12% and w.s. x 2
(OH= overhead, ws= wholesale, matl= materials)

We'd love to see your little corner of the world, where you create.
My corner is smack dab in the middle of the family room. It has the largest windows & I can keep an eye on my youngest so he doesn't feel ignored.


Where do you see your artwork in one year? Any plans in the works?
I hope to have settled into a more set "look"...I have so many different styles, I nee to narrow it down some. I also want to start adding different items, like placemats, coasters, quilts, etc.


It's the Storybeader's turn! I had a hard time choosing a favorite, because I love so many of Theresa's bags. So I thought, which one could I really use right now? The mock reptile wristlet won out. What a great idea to use a bangle for carrying a small bag around. Perfect for an opening at the museum, when I don't want to carry a purse - and mine are large. It might be hard to see, but this is actually olive in color, my favorite shade of green.


Posted for the EtsyBloggers team by: storybeader
See EtsyBloggers team membership requirements here: etsybloggers.com
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Wednesday, January 6, 2010

Etsyblogger Birthdays in the New Year

Happy New Year!

As we ponder what we liked about 2009 and what we want to see in our lives and businesses in 2010, may you grow in strength and wisdom. To celebrate the beginning of the New Year and the New Decade, please send joyful birthday greetings to our Etsybloggers for this week.

Lady Artisan Friday Jan 8


Mari Mac Kids Sunday Jan 10



Farm Lass Monday Jan 11






Posted for the EtsyBloggers team by: Handmade By Sandi

See EtsyBloggers team membership requirements here: etsybloggers.com

Got a blog? Love Etsy? Check us out!

Sunday, January 3, 2010

MiniMonday: jnoriginals





I have long been a fan of Judy’s work, even owning a few of her beautifully colored felted items. I don’t know what I would do without my felted needle book! After winning many awards for her handmade one of kind creations at the Iowa State Fair, Judy decided to share her passion by selling the many items she was originally just giving away.








Judy’s first shop: http://jnoriginal.etsy.com, is just one of the three shops she owns on Etsy. Her first shop “jnoriginals” features her many original felted designs of needle books and felted flowers, business card holders (one of which I also own); as well some crocheted items such as her spa cloths (which look so interesting), crocheted handbags, and scarf’s in which Judy uses her textile abilities to blend the colors so softly. For those who admire the intriguing art of felting, Judy posted an article called “The scoop on felting” http://boomersandbeyond.blogspot.com/2008/10/much-like-ebb-and-flow-of-sea-many.html.






Her second shop, which I also love, is a play on words, Mister PenQuin, http://MisterPenQuin.etsy.com. Browsing through this shop one will find items which reflect Judy main passion, that of writing; in which she invites the shopper to view “creative accessories for creative minds. Yes, that means you! Everyone is creative in some way. Here you will find her “mini brag books” which can be used to jot down those little memories that quickly come to mind, or put in photos, or anything special you wish to use as a keepsake. You will also love her intriquite little note cards which she designs herself. Judy also has handcrafted Christmas tags, which I am sure will be replaced soon with something for Spring.


Judy’s third shop, http://2ndChanceTreasures.etsy.com, is just that “second chance treasures.” In her own words, “My passing fancy is likely someone else’s lasting passion. In a word, I don’t believe in tossing what someone else can use. Give these treasures a second chance!” Here you will various patterns of cross stitching items ranging from snowmen, Christmas bells, to adorable little cross-stitching outfits for children, and appliqu├ęs for children’s clothing. Of course my favorite is the Victorian cross-stitch pattern of the “Angel of Spring.” If I ever get back to doing cross-stitching, that will be one of my first patterns to work on!

So, as you browse through Judy’s various shops, remember her life’s quote of success: "Nothing happens unless first we dream," says Carl Sandburg. I would add that dreams are also realized when we ask "What if...?" and "Why not?" Those two questions form the basis of my handmade, one-of-a-kind creations. You can learn more about Judy from her two different blogs: Word Walks - http://wordwalks.blogspot.com; and,
Spark Lines - http://sparklines.blogspot.com.






Posted for the EtsyBloggers team by:
MagdaleneJewels
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etsybloggers.com

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Happy New Year and 1/4/10 EtsyBloggers Blog Carnival


Dear wonderful EtsyBloggers,

Happy New Year, Happy New Decade!! It's a brand spankin new year!!

Hope your New Year's Eve was everything you wanted it to be -- and if you want to read about your teammates' New Year's Eves...then come read the very first edition of the 2010 EtsyBloggers Blog Carnival. It's now ready for your reading enjoyment here on my blog.

I wish you all a bloggy prosperous New Year!!

As always...and now in 2010...EtsyBloggers ROCK!!

Best Regards,
Joey & Aleethea
EtsyBloggers Admin & Team Leader

http://joeyandaleethea.etsy.com
http://joeyandaleethea.com/blog

"We're all about family and fabric, love and laughter, and handmade super coolness. That's how we rock."





See EtsyBloggers team membership requirements here: etsybloggers.com

Got a blog? Love Etsy? Check us out!

Friday, January 1, 2010

Internet Artisan Interview - Patch First Shop

I think one of my favorite things about etsy is getting to know people from around the world. I communicate with my next artisan everyday; she lives in Thailand, so we're on WAY different schedules! Patch is an etsybloggers and has three different Etsy shops. It was way fun, sitting down and looking in her shops for pictures, because they are so different: jewelry, vintage and supplies. She also has a shop on Artfire. Patch has two blogs right now; one is a special Wedding Guide Blog that is a must stop for all brides. But I'll let her tell you what she's up to:

What's the name of your business/shop?

I started my first shop with "PatchFirstShop" for everything: Jewelry, Vintage Clothing, and Supplies.. and then I wanted to make the shop more organized.. so I opened 2 more shops for vintage clothing "PatchVintageShop" and supplies "PatchSupplyShop".


Do you have a registered domain name and/or a blog?
Jewelry Shop in Etsy
Jewelry Shop in Artfire
Vintage Clothing Shop
Supply Shop
Weddings Guide Blog
All about Patch


What type of handmade products do you sell?
I made Handmade Jewelry from Genuine Swarovski beads - Crystals and Glass Pearls. And in my supply shop, I do make mini bags by hand-sewing.


Show us a piece you recently finished
Now I'm working on Little Princess Crown Rings in many colors following the monthly birthday gemstone. They will be added soon in my shop. Now I have only Emerald color in my shop. Finished colors are Garnet, Sapphire, Ruby, Diamond (Clear) and another extra - Black and white.

What are you working on right now? Any sketches?
I'm still working on my "Amelia Collection".. now I have Necklace, Hairpin, Brooch.. in my design, they must be Earrings and Bracelet too which I haven't made them coz they need something to re-design and adjust for the size. Moreover, this collection has 3 necklace designs which I've finished just one design. And of course I have the sketches but I can't show you.. it's CONFIDENTIAL!! hahah ;D You can see the sample of the sketches here














[this necklace is on etsy]


If you have a website or blog, what do you use for advertising? What do your avatars look like?
I have a rapid cart from my artfire shop and mini etsy in my wedding guide blog to advertise my shops for weddings market. I normally use one of my jewelry to be my avatars, sometimes necklace, sometimes earrings, sometimes ring.. Except the avatar in Etsy.. I'm using my name "Patch" as avatar in all my shops so everyone will know it's me. :D


If you have a website or blog, tell us about your favorite widget.
Ummm.. very difficult question for me.. coz I don't pay much attention on widgets in my blog..

Which online selling vendors do you use? What do you like best about each one?

Just only 2 online vendors - Etsy and Artfire.
Good thing for Etsy is that it's my really first online shop. I have all experiences there and now I have a group of friends there too since I've been the member of EtsyBloggers Team. So I feel like home there and of course all of my orders were in Etsy.
Good thing for Artfire is that all items they are all no expired date since I upgraded to Verified account. And lot of viewers are from search engines, I feel like I don't have to work much on advertising but still no order from it.. so not so sure now.. ;)

Are you involved in social networking? What's your favorite and why? If you're not involved, you must have a good reason.

I have many accounts in social networks: Twitter, Ning.com, Plurk, FaceBook, etc. My favorite is Plurk, I can share from Plurk to Twitter to FaceBook so I have to online only on website. The most favorite thing that I love on Plurk is that responding communications, I can chat with Plurk's friends like I use any instant messenger program. It's great for custom-order because you can talk all details with your customer.

All of us can use a helpful business hint once a week. What's yours?
If you have a blog to advertise you shops, try to blog about something that you think most people will search for it in any search engine. This will help your traffic to your blog and you may have more new customers to your shops. :D

Do you have a "modus operandi" for computing the price of a handmade object? Tell us your formula.
Ummmm.. let's see how can I explain all in one paragraph.. I make my own worksheet in Microsoft Excel (thank you for my previous job as sale representative). First I combine all supply cost in Thai Baht and then convert to US dollar plus exchange rate risk factor (about 10%) plus workman cost then multiply for a profit margin. Then add listing fee and packing cost. Calculate for Etsy order fee and Paypal fee.. then add both to the items.. now you have a price! (Why I have to calculate order fee and paypal fee in it, when you have an order the real fee will be slightly more than you calculate but you already added in your price so this means you pay for fee less than the real fee.. got it??)
But.. I still modify the formula because sometimes you will see that there are some costs that you forget to add in it.

We'd love to see your little corner of the world, where you create.
My bedroom is my workplace, every area of it - on the floor, on the desk, on the bed.. You can see my workplace here

Where do you see your artwork in one year? Any plans in the works?
I've already had the first shop for one year. At the first time in November last year, I got 2 sales in one week from the chat room. At that time I thought everything will be great by itself but couple of months with no sale, I knew I was wrong. I started to focus harder in April 2009, started to blog and other social networks. This year is just the started year for me.. kinda trial and error processes for me. So the plans for next year, the first priority is that I will pay attention to all my shops daily, adding new items daily, and blogging daily too to create more traffics to all my shops. Working harder is my plan for next year! :D


OK, it's the storybeader's turn. I don't know which I like more, clothing or jewelry. I would buy this vintage lace blouse, but I know a 19" bust has to be too small for me. Isn't it adorable! I also think Patch's pearl jewelry is exquisite, but I have a special hand-me-down from my mom...

Posted for the EtsyBloggers team by: storybeader
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