Contributor post by Michelle of EviesToolEmporium
Tell us about yourself.
Fall is my favorite season, and my favorite TV show is “Gilmore Girls”. I also love seeing how the world looks out the window of an airplane. It’s amazing how different things look from the sky.
When did you open your business and what make you decide to do so?
I opened the business this past summer. Ever since I was a little kid, I’ve loved creating handmade gifts for family and friends. I enjoy the crafting process, and people seem to enjoy getting something unique.
My friends actually were the ones that encouraged me to open the shop.
Tell us a bit about your products.
Everything in my shop is handmade by me from repurposed or upcycled materials. I sell Christmas ornaments and party and holiday decorations, as well as some other small gift items. I expect the range of things I carry in the shop to evolve as I find new ways to upcycle.
What inspires your work?
Partly recycling and partly playing with color. I think it’s important to use our resources carefully and not be wasteful. By taking a t-shirt that might not be wearable anymore and making it into yarn, it can find new life as a coaster, a basket, or a floor mat. That said, people still like to use things that are pleasing to the eye. Whatever I’m making, whatever material I use, I always take color and design into account as well.
What are your future goals for the business this year? What is your dream for this business?
To come up with new and different items to list in the shop. I’d also like to be more active in social media, and get more feedback from people about the kinds of items they’d like to see.
What makes your business stand out from businesses that sell similar products?
This is a tough question because there are so many great shops on Etsy that sell small handmade items. I think mine is a little different in that I have focused on using repurposed materials in every product that I offer.
Tell us a bit about your work space. Do you have a separate studio?
I have an old kitchen table I picked up at a garage sale several years ago that sits in the loft of my condo. It’s a nice place to work because there is a window to provide natural light during the daytime, and the table is big so I frequently have more than one project in progress at a time.
What have you learned since opening your business that you wish you had known before hand?
That it wasn’t going to be easy. In theory selling things in an online shop sounds like it should be simple, but it’s a lot of work, and you have to be patient. I’m also very new to this, so I still have a lot of learning to do, and welcome any tips from some of the more seasoned sellers!
Any advice for those thinking about selling on Etsy?
Be persistent, and make sure you enjoy what you’re doing.
When you’re not working, what do you like to do to unwind and have fun? Do you have any hobbies?
This venture is actually a hobby of mine. I have a day job, so having an Etsy shop is one of the ways I break up the routine from my usually 9 to 5. I also like running and traveling to new places.
What is your favorite quote?
“He who works with his hands is a laborer.
He who works with his hands and his head is a craftsman.
He who works with his hands and his head and his heart is an artist”.
I believe that’s from St. Francis of Assisi
Where can people find out more about your business?
On Instagram! I post pictures there showing more of the process of how I make the items in my shop.
Is there anything else you’d like to share?
Whatever you’re doing, try to be fully in the moment and appreciate the good things you have.
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