I have noticed that Etsy has a lot of shops geared towards little ones. I’m constantly seeing adorable baby blankets, dresses, artwork, and toys. As a person with no children of my own, no nieces or nephews, and very few friends with children, I don’t really have much of a reason to shop for child-themed items. Getting a pair of knitted baby Uggs for a non-existant kiddo was weird enough.
Sometimes, though, I see something on Etsy that makes me wish I had a kid to buy it for. Sometimes it’s a single item, and sometimes it’s a whole shop. Two of these shops that make me wish I had children are RaeGun and Sarah Jane Studios. RaeGun sells the most adorable handmade dresses for little girls (and also some grown up dresses, slings, and clothes for little boys). The dress pictured at left is one of my current favorites, the Measuring Tapes Peek-a-Boo Dress. RaeGun also has a blog worth checking out.
Sarah Jane Studios provides beautiful artwork under the heading “illustrating childhood.” And at least for me, this style of art does remind me of my own childhood. These prints remind me of images I saw in Highlights Magazine, and other children’s books. Each print is lovely, but some of my favorites are April Showers and Wellesley and Winslow — Christmas Post. The shop features prints and a variety of stationery. You can keep tabs on Sarah Jane Studios on her blog.
As for single items that make me wish I had a kid to shop for, check out the Arr… Change me booty Onsie (I like pirates), this Freshcut Peasant Dress, and Harry Hippo.
Last night I decided to download all my monthly Etsy bills and enter the data into a spreadsheet. You can download your Etsy bills in CSV format (a nice, friendly format you can import into most any spreadsheet program) and instantly have nice, orderly access to sales, listing, renewal, and payment data. I was curious about whether my hunch that I sell more when I list more was based in reality, or just wishful thinking. I made up a chart that looks at frequency of listings and sales per month. Here it is (isn’t it pretty?):
I probably could have examined this much more thoroughly, but I really just wanted a quick visual, and for that, this chart suffices. It does appear that sales increase right after a list, and tend to drop off as my listing drops off, too. I suppose it would be harder to notice this trend in the data if I was a maniac about listing… of course, maybe I would sell more, too. Do you ever make nerdy spreadsheets and graphs of your Etsy data?
Back when I was much younger, my mother got really into rubber stamping. Being the creative soul she is, my mother wasn’t content with the rubber stamps available to her and took it upon herself to carve her own. Like mother, like daughter, I suppose. I recently purchased a Speedball lino cutter and some Speedy Stamp and I’ve been mulling over some designs I want to try carving. I like to try new ways to create and be artistic, and the idea of reusable art appeals to me. Until I commit my ideas to Speedy Stamp, though, let me share a few of my favorite hand carved stamp Etsy shops with you.
Two Etsy shops selling hand carved stamps stand out for me. They are The Mayberry Sparrow and Craft Pudding. Each has its own clear, unique style, and both create stamps that are undeniably cute. I absolutely adore the Tiny Ingmar Swedish Horse stamp at The Mayberry Sparrow. At Craft Pudding, I particularly love the little masked raccoon stamp. Of course, each shop has lots of other great stamps, too. And if I were you, I’d need to get more than one. Craft Pudding also has a great blog that I keep tabs on through my feed reader.
Do you use rubber stamps? Do you carve your own? Do you have any carving tips for me? My, I’m demanding today! Please, share a tip with me if you have one. Or any other comment. I don’t want to be too pushy.
Although I love many things I’ve found on Etsy, I generally don’t shop for myself. It’s just not in my budget. So when I shared a set of pretty green items on St. Patrick’s Day, I certainly didn’t plan on buying any of them. (Wishing I could, sure, but I usually leave it at that.) One of those items stuck in my mind, though. I loved it, and I found myself thinking about it and worrying everyday about whether someone would buy it. So after a week, I figured maybe it was a sign that this one was very special, and I’d regret it if I didn’t buy it while I could. So now I am the happy owner of Alina Hayes’ Norway Spruce Green Pitcher.
You should definitely check out Alina’s shop. She has many beautiful pieces, and I was very pleased with her customer service and shipping. My little pitcher arrived quickly and wrapped in plenty of bubble wrap. Now that I’ve got it, I need to decide what to do with it (besides just smiling at it).
I have noticed that many of the sellers on Etsy have very full lives on top of their Etsy stores. Etsy on it’s own can take up so much time (promoting, blogging, creating, photographing, listing, packing, and shipping sound like enough for a full-time job to me!). I’ve noticed that many sellers are parents, hold down full-time “regular” jobs, and have lives, too. I have the same problem. I started selling on Etsy this past summer, but I’m still a full-time graduate student with some work I need to get finished. Etsy provided a nice, substantial change of pace from the type of work I do at school, which made for a wonderful break. And sometimes, I’d rather be doing Etsy than homework. And I have.
I’ve been doing some thinking, though, and if I really want to devote a fair amount of time to creating and Etsy, I need to get some other things, those things I had on my plate before I got into all this sewing stuff, finished. It’s difficult to do, but I’ve committed my true priorities to paper, and I am going to do my best to allocate my time in a way that reflects what I really need to do most. So, my shop may be a little sparse for awhile as I finish the school work that’s been hanging over my head (and poor SciFi Man’s head) and the sewing projects I’ve already committed to (like the fabulous bridesmaid’s bags I’m making for a friend’s May wedding). Once I’ve cleared the deck, I can give Etsy the attention it deserves.
Celebrate Valentine’s Day the handmade way with Etsy. With so many items, I couldn’t possibly look at everything that would be perfect for Valentine’s Day, but I found a few things that might make a wonderful gift for your sweetheart, or yourself. They will probably still be wonderful after Valentine’s Day, too.
His and Hers Coffee Cups by Alina Hayes Ceramics
Be Delicious Shea Butter Soap by Two Rivers Soap Company
Fuchsine Earrings by AntiGenre
Queen Ann’s Lace Wrap Dress by Makool
Happy Valentine’s day.
It snowed and snowed yesterday until we were pretty much housebound. Weather conditions like that always make me want to snuggle under a blanket with a mug of hot chocolate and read a book. With no sewing machine today, I also had some time to think about other ways to warm up my home. Here are some free patterns that will do just that:
And if you’re like me and don’t have a sewing machine upon which to make quilts and pillows, maybe you should check Etsy for something warm and snuggly. I bet a pair of fingerless gloves from TickledPinkKnits or a beautiful, warm sweater from BDG Designs would do the job.
How do you like to warm up on a cold, snowy day?
I found this great add-on for firefox that can improve your Etsy shopping experience. If you spend much time browsing Etsy (and why wouldn’t you?) you may have noticed that shops on Etsy aren’t permitted to put hypertext in their profiles or shop announcements. Lots of Etsy shops have associated blogs or other websites they would like to share with you, but without hyperlinks, the sharing ends up being a link typed out like regular text. There are a couple of drawbacks to this approach: 1) a url that isn’t hyperlinked won’t stand out from the rest of the text, so you may miss it completely, and 2) if you want to see what’s at that url, you have to copy and paste, which is an activity that gets old fast.
This isn’t to say that I don’t understand or even agree with Etsy’s decision to not allow hyperlinks in shop announcements or profiles. Allowing in hyperlinks could open the floodgates to spammy profiles and shops, and it could result in an store-fronts that are generally less attractive. Etsy clearly has a desire to keep shops simple and to have design consistency across shops, and these are both ideas I can stand behind. Keeping it simple, and limiting sellers’ abilities to personalize definitely keeps the shop looking more professional than it would otherwise.
But back to the point of this post: linkification! I’m on board with Etsy’s design plan, but I still hate copying and pasting urls when I could be clicking. With Firefox’s Linkification add-on, text urls become hyperlinks! This is an add-on worth installing, even if the only thing you’ll need it for is Etsy surfing. And if you’re not using Firefox already, isn’t this a good time to start?
This past week, I reached 30 sales on Etsy. When I started all this back in May, I had no idea that I would being selling on Etsy. And when I start selling in June, I don’t think it ever really crossed my mind that I would sell 30 things. I know it’s not a very big amount, but for someone who just sort of stumbled into this hobby and business, 30 seems huge to me. I am amazed, and so grateful, that 30 people I don’t know have given me a chance. So, thank you buyers. And thank you to those of you who have left feedback for me and the others who may consider buying from Anodyne Design. Each new feedback just makes my day. Thank you also to everyone who reads this blog. I love your comments, please keep them coming!