Sunday, January 12, 2014

Etsy Friends Sunday Spotlight

This week's featured shop: The Spider Lady

1. How long have you been in Business?
I have had an Etsy shop for a little over 3 years, but I have been selling my spiders for 15 years.

2. How did you get started in this Business?
Every year, my Mom gives each one of us a new Christmas Ornament. One year Mom gave me a blown Glass Spider ornament from Germany. It also had an abbreviated copy of the Christmas Spider legend with it. At the time, I was custom making jewelry for folks and just started playing around trying to make a spider. Believe me, my first ones were pitiful! I took some with my jewelry to a local craft show and they were a hit! The rest is history!! I work on coming up with new ideas for my spiders all the time.

3. Can you provide me with a description of your Business?
I make Beaded Christmas Spider Ornaments from the best quality glass and crystal beads that I can find. This year, I am also dabbling in dragonflies and some other things too. My sales are mostly concentrated around the Holidays, but last year, I sold spiders in all 12 months of the year.

4. How did you come up with the Name of your Business?
That one is easy! I did a few shows locally, selling both jewelry and my spiders. At the time, my business was called "Reflections of Light" - my last name is Light. When I was out and about around town people would recognize me from the shows that I did and say things like "Hey, aren't you the Spider Lady?" or "weren't you the spider lady at that craft show?". At that point, that was how I knew I would be known, so I changed my business name.

5. Is this your only Job?
I WISH! No, I am a Data Quality Analyst for an International Consumer Research Company.

6. Favorite Part of owning your own Business?
I would have to say that my favorite part is the creative aspect. I am only limited by what I can create! I love coming up with new ideas for not only my spiders, but other things that I think people may like!

7. Least Favorite Part?
Hands down, I would have to say, the administrative parts. If I could afford to hire somebody to pack and ship, inventory, list items, and leave me to create, I would be in Heaven!

8. What has proven to be the best way to market your Business?
I am very active in the Etsy Community and I think that helps a lot. I also get business from Pinterest and Facebook. I have a website, but I have scaled it down and link it to my Etsy show now as having both was too overwhelming last year. I think the biggest marketing tool that I have is simply my business cards. I include one with Every spider that I sell. When people give them as gifts they usually keep the business card with the spider and many, many times, I have gotten business from folks who have received a spider as a gift.

9. Your advice to someone just starting out?
Perseverance. You will make mistakes, but you learn from those mistakes. Believe me, I still make a lot, but I don't give up. I learn and move on. Always be looking for ways to improve your product or business. A stagnant business will die. Be open to constructive criticism. Remember, that a successful business takes time and effort. You can't just hang a shingle, say "here I am" and expect to do well in business. Finally, provide excellent customer service. I can't stress that last point enough - it can make or break your business.

10. I love my business. The day I stop loving what I do, is the day that I think I should move on to something else.

Thank you to Kimberly for taking the time to answer my questions today. I just love her designs, make sure to stop in and check out more of her creations at: The Spider Lady

Tuesday, January 7, 2014

Tuesday Treasury

Time to get back to Tuesday Treasury again, where I showcase items from other Etsy sellers in my Treasuries. Click on the title of the Treasury to go to Etsy for a larger more detailed view.


Sunday, January 5, 2014

Etsian Friends Sunday Spotlight

New Year and a new start on featuring fellow Etsians and their shops. This weeks featured shop is Renee Originals

1. How long have you been in business?
We have been in business for about a year now. We started towards the end of December 2012.

2. How did you get started in this business?

For as long as I can remember my mother and father always did creative things with my sister and I, so when we really started coming in to our own style and honed our skills it was only natural that we would try and support ourselves with our creations. Our father is also a very business minded person, so when the choice was to encourage his girls to get a job or work for themselves it was a rather cut and dry decision. We started off in the usual ways giving items to friends making things and wearing them, as well as getting involved in community events.

3. Can you provide me with a description of your business?

We specialize in unique, hand crafted fashion accessories. My sister and I are drawn to a sophisticated, classy and yet unique sense of style, thus we create items using a rather vintage method... crochet. We specialize in items such as shawls, hats, scarfs, gloves and even wire crochet jewelry. We also share the idea that the items you wear should be just as unique as the wearer, thus many of our items are customizable to each individual patron. On the jewelry side of our business unique and one of a kind is everything. So we really endeavor to bring unique items that have an elegance and beauty about them.

4. How did you come up with the name of your business?

Well ReneƩ is my middle name (Sarah ReneƩ Jones) and we like to create original items.

5. Is this your only job?
Thanks to the support and love of our family, yes this is. We are actually in college and we are actively involved in a volunteer work and so staying focused and organized has let us have the opportunity to work on making this our full-time job.

6. Favorite part of owning your own business?

I would have to say the freedom of being able to decide how we use our time. It always seems like there are not enough hours in the day and while owning our own business does not change this, it has provided us the freedom to still have our independence and not neglect really important things like our health and family.

7. Least Favorite part?

I would have to say the uncertainty. There is no guarantee that people will like what you do and actually buy which is a scary prospect. When you own your own business everything is dependent on you, if something breaks or someone is unhappy or even if you just can't meet an order all of the responsibility fall on you as the owner.

8. What has proven to be the best ways to market your business?

Being your brand is certainly one of the best ways that we have found to market. We like most people interact with others on a regular basis, so actually doing things like wearing our creations and not being afraid to talk them up has helped. As well as being involved in local events and of course social media.

9. Your advice to someone just starting out?
Be realistic, starting a business for most people is not an overnight endeavor, it takes time, so be patient and persevere.
Talk yourself and why you do what you do up, you are your business so be sure that the image that you portray is the image you want to give off.

10. Anything else you'd like to share about yourself or your business?

Our business is truly a melting pot of my sister and I's differing personalities, we kind of cover all the base's that way. We've really appreciated this opportunity to share what we love with everyone and wish all those who read this the best.

Thanks to Sarah for taking the time to answer my questions this week. Make sure to stop by and see more of their wonderful creations.  Renee Originals

Wednesday, January 1, 2014

Happy New Year

Wow have I been slacking on keeping up with the blog :(  Life has just been busy, I know that's not a good excuse, but it's the one I got. Real excuse.... I met someone and started dating, the first time in forever!!! I have devoted a lot of time to him, maybe more then I should, time will tell on that. Today's the first day of 2014 and this is my new slate to get my life restarted and back on track in so many ways. Getting back to the blog will be one place I start. I wish everyone nothing but the very best in 2014, may it be a wonderful year for all of us!!!