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2015 Vendor Introductions

The 2015 Vendor Lineup is here!  Over the next few weeks we will be introducing this years vendors, five at a time.

Our first Vendor Introduction is Romina of Wooly Gems. We asked Romina a couple of questions and here’s what she told us.

1. What do you make/sell?

Knits knits knits!! and some Crochet …Mostly accessories but love making chunky baby sweaters/vests…they look like little old people its adorable.

2. Why do you make/sell it? What inspires your work?

Knitting started out as a hobby passed down from my Mother and then kind of took over my life! It brings me so much joy when I see others wearing my work! Inspiration comes from everywhere! I love neutral, simple designs but also crave a good vibrant color.

3. Is there anything you’d like to tell others about what you do?

I love love love a challenge… If you think of a design or a color combo I would love to make it!! Seeing what inspires others inspires me!

You can find Romina on Instagram: @woolygems

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Next up we have Amanda Parker of Marian + Hazel.

1. What do you make/sell?

Marian + Hazel is an expanding collection of jewellery, visual art, lighting, and home accessories that is both modern and refined. Each piece is completely handmade and therefore unique. All of the pieces are created using non-traditional and/or recycled materials employing shapes and textures inspired by nature.

2. Why do you make/sell it? What inspires your work?

I take great joy in the maker role, especially when I get to meet the individuals purchasing my work. I think if you are going to make something it should be timeless, meaningful and beautiful. I am completely in awe by the tiny details in nature, especially those not seen by the naked eye. I am constantly studying macro photography of seed pods and coral and I love how nature has a way of organizing itself.

3. Is there anything you’d like to tell others about what you do?

I take a lot of pride in the fact that all of my pieces are completely hand made without the use of moulds or bought parts, and I like the amount of control I have in the design as a result.

You can find Amanda here: Facebook, Twitter, Instagram, and Pinterest.

Amanda Parker, Lotus Pendant

Cultures Series Leeubekkie

Up next is Kim of Sleepy Holow Leather.

1. What do you make/sell?

I make hand-carved and stamped leather items like horse tack, purses, dog collars, belts, wallets, and journal covers to name a few. I also do hand beaded items and wire wrapped gem stones and semi-precious stones incorporated into my leather work. I also do knitted items like hats, scarves and mitts during the winter!

2. Why do you make/sell it? What inspires your work?

Leather is a medium that allows such limitless creativity, rich in history and tradition, and it allows me to incorporate so many other artistic outlets that I love to do, like beading, painting, and wire wrapping, sewing, and drawing.  I am most inspired my my mentor who is an amazing saddle maker and has such a vast knowledge of the history of leather work and traditional styles.

3. Is there anything you’d like to tell others about what you do?

I am a one-woman shop, so everything is handmade by me! That being said making leather items (and beaded items too) take time as there are several steps in the process to create something, from drawing the pattern, to carving and stamping the design, and the multiple finishing steps! I take great pride in my work and I strive to provide my customers unique custom items that will last a lifetime!

You can find Kim here: Facebook, Twitter, Pinterest, Instagram, and her website.

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Carly of Folly a Tet makes amazing felted creations and weavings.

1. What do you make/sell?

Fibre based jewelry, accessories, and decor pieces. I use traditional techniques such as felting and weaving to create contemporary wearable art.

2. Why do you make/sell it? What inspires your work?

I love creating pieces that are not only visually interesting, but with tactile appeal as well. I am inspired by colour, nature, and vintage aesthetics.

3. Is there anything you’d like to tell others about what you do?

Each Folly a Tet piece is one of a kind, and made from sustainable, natural materials such as local Merino wool and recycled silk threads.

You can find Folly a Tet here: Instagram, Facebook, and Twitter.

Folly a Tet
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Finally for today, we have Tammy of Three Small Fry Prims.

1. What do you make/sell?

100% cotton flour sack tea towels, prim style ornaments, and dolls.

2. Why do you make/sell it? What inspires your work?

I love to bring smiles to peoples faces.  I love to create, and try new techniques.

You can find Three Small Fry Prims here: Twitter, and Facebook.

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Getting Started on Etsy: Part 5 – Promotion

It’s Part 5 and the final post in our Getting Started on Etsy series. You’ve got everything set up, your shop is filled with listings, it’s time to let people know that you’re ready! One can not rely on titles and tags alone so today we’re going to talk a bit about promotion!

There are many avenues to explore when it comes to promoting your shop. I am by no means an expert but I am going to touch base on a few places that have really helped me along the way.

Teams – there are many different kinds of teams on Etsy. Teams can be based on geographical location, products, promotion, Etsy help, support, etc. No matter which kind you join, Teams are a wonderful resource for support and promotion. I’ve made sales through my teams, business connections and collaborations and lasting friendships with people all over the world that I would have otherwise never met. Teams also provide opportunity to be involved with Etsy on a different level like test groups or even becoming market organizers! Be active on your teams. Post in team threads, respond to team convos, participate in team promotions or sales. The more active you are the more likely you will be to make connections and help build a shop following on and off Etsy. Explore the thousands of Etsy Teams to find some that interest you or become a Team Captain and start a team of your own!

Social Media – Instagram, Facebook, Twitter, and Pinterest are kind of like the big four but there are many others. Social media is a great place to communicate your brand. Post about your process, when you’ve added a new listing, what market you’ll be selling at next, etc. Be sure to include some posts about your personal life such as family, hobbies, travels, etc. so that buyers and followers can feel more connected to you and the items they purchase. Also within Etsy be sure to activate Facebook and Twitter so that buyers can follow you directly from your shop page! Go to Shop Settings and then Info & Appearance. Social media is great because it’s a convenient place for buyers to follow you and keep up to date on your shops happenings (new listings, sales, vacation dates, limited edition products, etc.).

Don’t forget to follow Etsy and Etsy Canada, Etsy Teams you belong to, potential markets in your area, other sellers, etc. on social media too. Like teams, social media is a great place to make connections and keep up to date on what’s happening. Be sure to like and comment on others posts. Think of it as virtual networking!

Blogs – Find blogs with similar themes to your shop and start commenting on the posts. Offer to write a guest post for the blog such as a diy or product roundup. Typically at the bottom of your guest post you would include a short bio about yourself and you can include a link to your Etsy shop. Doing guest posts on blogs can give you some weight as a professional and expert in your field which attracts buyers to want to know more about your products and possibly even buy from you.

Another great way to utilize blogs is to create one of your own. You can show behind the scenes photos of your workshop/office as well as info about the process that goes into make your products. Just like social media be sure to also post about your personal life too. Include recipes, photos from your travels, diy’s and tutorials, your hobbies. These posts allow buyers to get to know you better and feel more connected to the purchase they’ve made or are thinking about making.

About Page – On Etsy be sure to fill out your About page. Tell the story behind your shop and how you started. Share how you came up with your shop name. Explain why you use the materials you do or where they’re sourced from. Add a personal touch to your About page by including some family details or tell why you live where you do. The About page is the best place within Etsy to really tell your story to potential buyers and followers. Use all 5 photos spots to show pictures of your products as well as behind the scenes photos of your workshop and process. Include yourself in some of the photos too! It’s always fun to see the face behind the products. Finally, add your social media and blog links on your About page too so people can follow you off of Etsy as well.

 

Final Tips:
Sign up with the same shop name on every site (social media sites and blog for example) so that people can find you easily and there’s consistency within your brand.

Maintain a well stocked shop (at least one page of listings). Having a well stocked shop gives a professional and organized feel to your shop, it offers variety and provides more opportunity to get featured both on and off of Etsy. As someone who features a lot of shops nothing bothers me more than finding a great shop only to discover that they only have 3 or 4 listings. Buyers will feel the same way!

Photos, photos, photos!! Sometimes it’s the mood or emotion that the photo evokes that pushes a buyer over the edge when it comes to committing to the sale so spend some time and really perfect your photos. Use natural lighting and make sure to be consistent with your photos. Use the same setting or similar backgrounds and photo props to create a cohesive look throughout your shop. Good photographs give off a sense of professionalism so use them to your advantage.

 

We’ve covered a lot in this series. We wanted to give you a general overview of how to get started on Etsy but don’t be afraid to click around the site yourself. Explore what other tools Etsy has to offer such as Vacation Mode, Etsy Widgets and Badges, Coupon Codes, Stats, Gift Cards, the list goes on! Check out the Etsy Seller Handbook and Etsy Help to find out more about the topics we’ve covered and many other areas of Etsy. Hopefully after reading through this series you can feel confident about starting your shop and seeing where your business can go!

Don’t forget to use our code CALGARY on the promotions page to receive your first 20 listings free! If you have any questions about anything in this series please post a comment! We’d love to hear from you! Happy selling!

Lindy, Hilda and Jillian

Getting Started on Etsy
Part 1 – What’s Involved
Part 2 – Initial Set Up
Part 3 – Photography
Part 4 – Titles and Tags
Part 5 – Promotion

First image photo by Forage Photo & Design

 

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Getting Started on Etsy: Part 1 – What’s Involved

So you’ve been tinkering with the idea of opening an Etsy shop for awhile now but it seems a bit daunting. What exactly is involved? How much does it cost? How do I take great photos? How do I promote my items? The list of questions goes on an on. Welcome to our Getting Started on Etsy series! Jillian, Hilda and I have a combined 20 years of experience selling on Etsy! We’ve worked hard and seen our businesses grow but we remember what it was like to first start out. For me personally it was incredible exciting and I poured myself into my shop and getting everything just right before launching. I had a lot of questions though and relied heavily on help and advice from other sellers. So in this series we’re here to help you! We’ll answer your questions and hopefully make opening your Etsy shop a thing of reality!

What’s involved:
Selling on Etsy can give you the opportunity to test the market, expand your business, sell internationally, find wholesale opportunities and make lasting friends and business connections. Etsy is a platform to help you build your business at your own pace. Getting Started on Etsy - Part 1
Greeting Card by ImPaper


What can you sell:
Handmade, vintage and craft supplies can all be sold on Etsy. Check out the Etsy Guidelines for further detail.

Handmade:
Handmade items must be created by the seller (or a member of the collective) operating the Etsy shop. Sellers can also use outside manufacturers to help produce their items providing they submit an outside manufacturing application and its approved.
Getting Started on Etsy - Part 1
Left to Right: Marian and Hazel, Owl and Olive Designs, Creationz Mini

Vintage:
Vintage items must be at least 20 years old.
Getting Started On Etsy - Part 1
Left to Right: Billie Boone Vintage, Trashtiques, A Pears Vintage Goodies

Craft Supplies:
Craft supplies can be both handmade and non-handmade (commercial) crafting supplies.
Getting Started on Etsy - Part 1
Left to Right: Yarn Ink Studio, Soph & Oh, Kiwi Tini Creations


How it works:

– It costs $.20 per listing for a 4 month period.
– Once an item has sold you will also pay a 3.5% transaction fee based on the total of that item
– Buyers can pay your through Paypal or Etsy’s direct checkout (additional fees do apply)
– You can pay your listing and transaction fees monthly either with PayPal, your direct checkout balance or a credit card.

Getting Started on Etsy - Part 1
Photograph by Logee Photography

Getting started on Etsy is really very simple with minimal risk. You can find out more info in the Etsy Seller Handbook or take the plunge and open your own shop by going here. Make sure to use our team code CALGARY to receive your first 20 listings free!

Part 2 of the Getting Started on Etsy series will go over the initial set up of your shop. If you have any comments or questions about Part 1 please leave us a comment! We’d love to hear from you!

Lindy, Jillian and Hilda

Getting Started On Etsy
Part 1 – What’s Involved
Part 2 – Initial Set Up
Part 3 – Photography
Part 4 – Titles and Tags
Part 5 – Promotion

First image photo by Jewelry by Saveria

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