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~ the most creative year ~

11/25/2010

I opened my first etsy shop a year ago to celebrate my birthday, dedicate part of my life to being creative and challenging my design skills. & I’m so thankful I did!

… My creations landed many front pages and were noted by some amazing bloggers. I mailed 110 packages to my etsy supporters, and sold over 90 other handmade pieces at seven local art/crafts shows. None of this would be possible without the amazing vehicle called etsy.com. Today I look back & celebrating the most creatively rewarding year of my life!

Yes, etsy is an incredibly competitive space, but the artists I admire the most happen to be the ones who don’t necessarily make huge sales. I don’t get bummed by slower times. I was flattered by a peak in sales last March thanks to a double blog feature. I now appreciate that I don’t have to worry about mixing up my orders and remember the name of the supporter whose custom order I‘m working on – I can focus my intentions on the story they shared with me when describing who the gift was for. I also learned to not get bummed by my low jewelry sales – the most competitive category on etsy. My designs receive wonderful feedback at art & craft shows & sell so well in person! (I certainly would be concerned if it was the other way around).

Hey etsy – thank you for the opportunity to constructively channel the creative part of my brain over the last 12 months. Without mobilization of amazing venue I would not have expanded my papercut art into new successful canvases like vintage maps and dictionaries. Without etsy’s viciously competitive jewelry category, my designs would not have improved so drastically forcing me to open a new etsy shop I no longer feel a little embarrassed mentioning to my friends.

Some lessons I learned along the way I’d like to pass to my fellow etsians:

  • Don’t be surprised to lose interest in a creation people love, even if it’s featured on the etsy’s front page four times & brings you much needed start-up income – once you feel you’re beginning to resent it, sell the business to someone who will embrace it
  • Stay positive! The first craft show I participated in delivered eight guests during its six hours. I made sure to do better research next time & at that poorly organized show spent my time befriending a craft show buddy (anther jewelry vendor!) We traded jewelry, have supported each other’s work since & share show supplies since.
  • Budget time for being creative without any restrain – forget about what’s popular, what’s trending. Let your hands & mind loose & see what happens – it just might be the new trend.

Here’s to my second year!

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One Comment leave one →
  1. 01/04/2011 07:16

    Thanks for your positive comments, great advice and perspective.
    Your cut paper work is fascinating!

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