Light And Bright

Contributor post by Alicia from AliciasFindings

There are many things that can be defined as light and bright.

There are bright eyes, bright lights, bright colors..

There are light of the sun,illuminate an area,radiate an area..

Here at CIJ we want to see all your light and bright items. Please tell us all about it. The why, what, how and so on.

Dawn from DeeDeeSupplies says these light and bright coloured beads are great for embellishing bunting, cards, jewelry, clothing, scrapbooking and more!

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Loose tube bugle beads

willowvalleyvintage from WillowValleyVintage said this is a vintage Christmas light bulb.

I imagine this angel looked “heavenly” on the tree! The beams of light would have shown from the cut out circles and stars on her gown! Wow!

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Angel Christmas decoration vintage bulb

Diana from joliefemmebydiana states laughter is light hearted! Colors are bright! This funny print has both with some happy funny faces and bright pink and orange print! It is a unique print that will make you smile!

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Alegria Happy funny faces tote

Traci from mytoffeeapple discussed the beautiful, bright and fresh with botanical white flowers, ” I love you forever mom” art print.

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Mother’s Day digital download

Pam Colangelo from PearlsVintagebyPam said stunning shimmery Eisenberg Original fur clip
rhinestones are light and amber stones are like the sun
Old and bright vintage jewelry to brighten up dress attire.

Eisenberg Original Dress Clip Signed 1930s

Member Feature: Hieropice

Contributor post by Michelle of EviesToolEmporium

Please join us in welcoming Dara of Hieropice, our featured member!

Hieropice

Hieropice

Tell us about yourself.

I’m a jewelry/home decor artist based just outside of Boston.  I’ve been enamored with all things nature since I was a child, and nature is the focus of my work. I’m also a foodie, and like exploring the creative intersections between the culinary and craft worlds.  When I’m not making things, I’m cuddling the furry creatures in my life, foraging for materials, and I may have seen a “Housewives” episode or two!

When did you open your business and what make you decide to do so?

I started on Etsy full-time in 2010, and was a part-time maker before then.  I was laid-off during the recession, and struggled to find a full-time position in my field with comparable pay/benefits to what I’d had, so I decided it was time to try to make a go of my own business.2

Tell us a bit about your products.

I started out solely selling my jewelry online and in stores, but have since expanded my product line to offer a variety of home decor items, including etched glass vessels, wall-art, ornaments, magnets, etc.  The botanical theme is present in all of my products; I sculpt miniatures from polymer clay and combine them with preserved natural elements to create “miniature terrarium necklaces,” make ornaments, magnets and wall-art from preserved, foraged and created natural materials.  I etch glass vessels with my original botanical illustrations of culinary plants for use as decanters, oil pourers and diffusers.  I am always working on developing pieces that will be interesting and consistent with my brand.3

What inspires your work?           

There is plenty of inspiration in nature.  I think I am on an everlasting quest to try to capture it, in its most perfect form.

What are your future goals for the business this year? What is your dream for this business?

I aim to increase my sales outlets this year.  I will be looking into more brick-and-mortar venues, which I’ve generally avoided in the past because my jewelry was so time-consuming to make and the price of consignment/wholesale so steep. Some of my new items will work in for consignment/wholesale much more easily.  Ultimately, I could see running my own brick-and-mortar shop.

What makes your business stand out from businesses that sell similar products?

I try very hard to make original products.  Of course, when you come up with a good idea, someone is bound to try to do their own take on it.  I always strive to create items that are different from what’s currently in the marketplace, and hope my customers can distinguish the value of my handmade work from others trying to replicate it.  “Terrarium necklace” yields a lot more search results than it did when I began making them, and while I don’t see others identical to mine out there, a flooded marketplace means it’s time to move on to new things!5

Tell us a bit about your work space. Do you have a separate studio?

I do have an in-home studio, as of 2015.  It’s small, but it really helps with production!6

What have you learned since opening your business that you wish you had known before hand?

The importance of meticulous record-keeping.  Tracking expenses for supplies, travel to purchase supplies, to craft shows, the profit you make on the sale of each item, etc., it’s all very tedious.  But it means the difference between a viable business and a potentially costly hobby.  I was really reluctant to break down the numbers initially, particularly since with jewelry you’re literally talking about the cost of a single bead sometimes… Had I not, I would’ve probably abandoned my business long ago, I would have had no understanding of how to actually profit in my business.

Any advice for those thinking about selling on Etsy?

Do your homework!  There’s a wealth of information in the Seller Handbook.  Ask questions of seasoned sellers in the forums.  Etsy has changed a lot since its inception, the days of tossing up some listings and waiting for sales are gone.

When you’re not working, what do you like to do to unwind and have fun? Do you have any hobbies?

I watch so much tv!  I hate to admit it, but having it on in the background helps me destress.  I love Zumba and sing in a community choir as well.  I love trying new restaurants and try to find a new one each week to test out.  And Netflix documentaries are the best!

What is your favorite quote?

I don’t have one, really.

Where can people find out more about your business?  

Facebook: Hieropice

 Is there anything else you’d like to share?

Thanks so much for including me in this feature!4

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If you would like to be featured, please go to the CIJ Etsy Forum and fill out the questionnaire. Please note you must be a member of the CIJ Etsy team to be featured.

Member Feature: MustHaveBeenTheCat

Contributor post by Michelle of EviesToolEmporium

Please join us in welcoming Cat of MustHaveBeenTheCat, our featured member!

MustHaveBeenTheCat

MustHaveBeenTheCat

Tell us about yourself.

I live in Tasmania, the beautiful island state of Australia. Surrounded by mountains, river and sea it’s truly a beautiful place to be.

I love all sorts of craft and I love to combine my love of sewing with my love of cats and so MustHaveBeenTheCat was born. I make all sorts of quirky cat creations but my most popular item is my cat shaped neck and shoulder therapy packs which can be used hot or cold.

When did you open your business and what make you decide to do so?

I opened MustHaveBeenTheTheCat in 2011.

MustHaveBeenTheCat was the perfect chance to combine my love of cats and my love of sewing.

I chose MustHaveBeenTheCat as it’s often the cat that gets blamed for anything that goes wrong.

“Who knocked that expensive vase off the shelf?” “It must have been the cat!”tillie

Tell us a bit about your products.

My best selling items are my heat packs. I have cat, dog and fox shaped neck and shoulder wrap heat packs. Great for easing those sore and stiff necks.

I also have cat dolls,cat themed totes and phone covers, book covers, fleecy scarves and hand warmers.

My newest range are my cat shaped weighted shoulder wraps and lap pillows for those with sensory processing issues.2015-10-21-20-45-02

What inspires your work?           

I am inspired by my love of cats. They are so irresistible. Every cat has its own personality. Just like my own creations, no two are the same.

I have to admit to being a fabricholic or is it a curator of fabric? So much beautiful fabric and so little time and so little room.

Being able to sell my creations made with gorgeous fabrics gives me an excuse to buy more.fox6a

What are your future goals for the business this year? What is your dream for this business?

 I’d like to get a standalone website up and running and use up some more of my gorgeous fabric collection.c2387013154ca0cf52dd8f1de07ca540

What makes your business stand out from businesses that sell similar products?

I think I have a niche market ans no-one else creates the things I do but if I we are just talking about heat packs mine are unique as they are cat, fox and dog shaped made in gorgeous fabrics and no two are alike.

Tell us a bit about your work space. Do you have a separate studio?

My work space is my kitchen table so it can be frustrating as I have to pack up everything at the end of the day and set it up again the next time.

My ultimate dream would be to have a dedicated work space …. my own studio.78fa376f2fd4c0060381c9fd90bbfb8d

What have you learned since opening your business that you wish you had known before hand?

I wish I had known how much work it would be and also how much fun it would be and that I would find such a wonderful support network on Etsy.

Any advice for those thinking about selling on Etsy?

Make sure you join an active and supportive team it can make all the difference to your success.

When you’re not working, what do you like to do to unwind and have fun? Do you have any hobbies?

When I’m not working I’m studying. I’m doing a second degree course as well as a certificate course. It keeps me busy and out of mischief.

I’ve also taken up quilting and love to use up all those scraps from my creations to make new fabric and exciting quilts. Well if I’m really honest I make lots of quilt tops but haven’t actually finished any yet. So many things to do and so little time.ab35b19e70093909eb4c16441222e4df

What is your favorite quote?

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Where can people find out more about your business?  

You can also find me on:
Instagram: http://instagram.com/musthavebeenthecat
Pinterest: http://pinterest.com/musthavebeenthecat

And my Shopify store: https://must-have-been-the-cat.myshopify.com

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If you would like to be featured, please go to the CIJ Etsy Forum and fill out the questionnaire. Please note you must be a member of the CIJ Etsy team to be featured.

Welcome March New Team Members

Contributor post by Dawn from DeeDeeDeesigns

Join us in welcoming new members that joined during March…. visit their Etsy shops, favourite some items and maybe even share some on social media!

Vicky and Julian from KNOTSANDSPARKLEZ says
I am a micro macrame artist I hand knot jewelry and accessories with colorful, tiny cords, and incorporate other materials in my pieces to make it more contemporary. My pieces range from classy and elegant to everyday wear, and I often work with custom orders.It is different from regular jewelry as its main component are cords, and glass beads which allow those with metal sensitivities to wear it with no problems. My earrings are also extremely light weight so those who love larger earrings can do so without the added strain on their lobes.In addition I also write tutorials for those who wish to learn. I am sharing is my David Bowie tribute wrap bracelet in black and silver which I designed myself.

Davod Bowie tribute bracelet

I am an illustrator and visual artist from Chile and I sell my illustrations here.
For now I have a lot of notebooks/sketchbooks for sale. Printed and handmade ones. I hope within time I can upload more products.
What makes my notebooks specials? I thinks it is that the handmade ones are painted directly on the covers, so when you buy one, you are also buying an original painting. I also try to paint a lot of local fauna, so people can learn to identify them, and as most of the buyers here are from the United States, I have a few birds from there.

Robin notebook

Hi! My name is Debbie I am the creator of HollyBee and Company! We make Wooden home decor! We have a new item in our shop that is very special to us and hope that we will get to share its beauty and meaning with others. It is a wooden triangle, representing faith, love and peace. The Triangle can hang on the wall as a simple piece of art work or you can use it to offer a hearts desire to. Offering your hearts desire into the Triangle with the intention that the universe will help you bring it into manifestation. The Triangle can represent anything you like and we will customize the words in each corner to your liking. What ever you choose our hope is that it will bring a sense of joy to whom ever brings it into their home  space.

Reclaimed wooden triangle

Welcome new team members and looking forward to your involvement!

Member Feature: PinkParchmentSoaps

Contributor post by Michelle of EviesToolEmporium

Please join us in welcoming Trish of PinkParchmentSoaps, our featured member!

PinkParchmentSoaps

PinkParchmentSoaps

Tell us about yourself.

I am a wife and mother. I have a wonderful husband who supports me in all of my endeavors. I have 2 wonderful girls, now in their 20’s and they are my pride and joy.

When did you open your business and what make you decide to do so?

Created in 2007, Pink Parchment Soaps offers a complete line of all natural, fun and unique soaps as well as body butters, sugar scrubs and solid perfumes.

Why? Because we love making all natural, almost all natural and simply fun products! Years ago we bought some handmade soap. WOAH Hold the water, hold the bubbles, hold the soap! Who knew the difference? We didn’t, but then we did and what a difference it was. We immediately fell in love with handmade soaps and bought more and more and more. (Yes we LOVE handmade soap) Finally one day Jim (Dear husband and father) said, “You know, I think you could make this yourself”. Waa Haa Haa, boy was he right! And how much fun we had! A few classes and a couple of boat loads of soaps later, we had more soap than we knew what to do with AND we still and a thousand new ideas we wanted to try.soap-room

Tell us a bit about your products.

We make handmade bath and beauty products. Our current line up includes: Soap, Sugar Scrubs, Body Butters, Shower Steamers, Bath Bombs and Perfume. We are planning on adding bath salts and some aromatherapy products this year. Stay Tuned! We love searching out and finding ingredients that come from small businesses  as well as local businesses.2

What inspires your work?           

That’s a hard question! I’d have to say mostly nature. Flowers and color combinations that are beautiful.moon-glow-4-1000

What are your future goals for the business this year? What is your dream for this business?

We would love to be able to grow our business and be able to hire some local people who have our same ideals and goals. For me, this includes being able to pay a living wage, provide health care, have an inspiring work place, work with creative people who love their work and love to laugh and of course – have fun.

What makes your business stand out from businesses that sell similar products?

I think what makes us stand out the most is that we make beautiful products, use the highest quality ingredients, and make products that make people feel better about their day!

Tell us a bit about your work space. Do you have a separate studio?

I currently have a separate kitchen and separate “soap room”. The soap room was once our living room.

What have you learned since opening your business that you wish you had known before hand?

Oh my! There is so much that I have learned! Go to conferences! Meet people who are in the same line of business and really, truly listen to what worked and didn’t work for them and why. Get inspired by the people you meet. Take customer suggestions and feedback seriously – but evaluate if what they have to say works for you and your current business model. Know that you will make mistakes. We all do. Get over it and move on.

Have a dream and dream big!

Any advice for those thinking about selling on Etsy?

Yes! I would suggest doing research on what kind of products you want to sell. And I know this has been said a thousand times – have good titles, tags, keywords and most of all have good photos. Fill in all of your information, and I think this is the most important – make sure you show up in the search. Think like someone who is trying to find your product and what they would search on. Because, if no one can find you, well you simply won’t sell anything.

When you’re not working, what do you like to do to unwind and have fun? Do you have any hobbies?

We do lots! Gardening is always on the top of the list. Yoga, walking in the woods, cooking YUM – we all love trying new recipes, traveling, going to see bonsai exhibitions – what a fantastic art this is! Going to the movies, the zoo, plays, musicals!

What is your favorite quote?

One cannot think well, love well, sleep well, if one has not dined well.
Virginia Wolf

Where can people find out more about your business?  

Etsy: PinkParchmentSoaps3

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If you would like to be featured, please go to the CIJ Etsy Forum and fill out the questionnaire. Please note you must be a member of the CIJ Etsy team to be featured.

Member Feature: LoveYourBling

Contributor post by Michelle of EviesToolEmporium

Please join us in welcoming Ruthie of LoveYourBling, our featured member!

LoveYourBling

LoveYourBling

Tell us about yourself.

My name is Ruthie Youngman; I am the founder of Love Your Bling®. I am also a Licensed Clinical Social Worker who moonlights as a jewelry designer. I am a wife and mother of two.

When did you open your business and what make you decide to do so?

After many years working in the mental health field, I turned to the hobby of beading to cope with stress at work. The hobby evolved into a small business that allows me to enjoy two diverse careers. I have now shipped to all 50 states and over 50 countries worldwide.

Tell us a bit about your products.

My products styles have varied over the years, but one thing that has stayed consistent is the bling. I am a verified SWAROVSKI® Elements branding partner, so my customer’s can be reassured that they are receiving high-quality crystals.2

What inspires your work?           

Color is my biggest source of inspiration. I love to keep up with Pantone’s seasonal color predictions and incorporate them into my designs. I love classic looks and try to go overboard with style trends.

What are your future goals for the business this year? What is your dream for this business?

My number one goal in 2017 is to focus on wholesale. It is an area of my business I have not put much energy into but I plan to.

What makes your business stand out from businesses that sell similar products?

Etsy is a huge marketplace and jewelry is one of if not the most competitive category. There are many designers that create looks that are similar, however, I feel years of excellent customer service and consistent five-star rating reassures customers that I will deliver exactly what they expect. I have endured the high’s and lows of a small business and I am still here. One thing that frustrates customers is when they find a great Etsy shop, and then when they come back to purchase the shop is gone or on vacation. I am proud to have stayed in business this long.

Tell us a bit about your work space. Do you have a separate studio?

When I started making jewelry I did everything on my dining room table. Over the years my family has grown and so has our living space so now I have a dedicated room to work in.3

What have you learned since opening your business that you wish you had known before hand?

In the past eight years, I have learned so much about running a small business, and I did so through a lot of trial and error and Google. I wish I had paid for more education early on. The past three years I have attended conferences specifically designed for handmade business such as Craftcation. It has been wonderful to network with other creative small business owners. I also wish I had registered my trademark sooner.

Any advice for those thinking about selling on Etsy?

Read the forums daily. Over the years I have so many changes and they literally happen overnight. Checking in with forums is the best way to know what is about to change or has changed. Etsy has been great at providing a lot of education via blog posts, and other series and I highly recommend engaging in whatever they provide.

When you’re not working, what do you like to do to unwind and have fun? Do you have any hobbies?

I have been a life-long crafter, so I dabble in just about every kind of there is. Anything from paper crafts, fiber arts, to painting. At the moment I have revived my love of knitting.

What is your favorite quote?

My absolute favorite quote is by Coco Chanel who said: “In order to be irreplaceable one must always be different.” I believe this is my philosophy is all aspects of my life, but for business, it is critical to stand out.4

Where can people find out more about your business?  

You can find all you need to know at www.LoveYourBling.com, and I am on all major social media channels as @LoveYourBling.

 Is there anything else you’d like to share?

I am also a member of the by-invitation-only, juried celebrity gifting organization The Artisan Group®. Love Your Bling has been worn on seven network television shows including The Vampire Diaries, Jane the Virgin, and Fuller House.  Love Your Bling has also participated in elite award show gift lounges such as GBK’s Luxury Celebrity Gift Lounges in Honor of the Golden Globes, MTV Movie Awards, and Primetime Emmys.

I have also been honored to have designs published in two nationally published beading magazines; Bead Style and Create Jewelry magazines.5

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If you would like to be featured, please go to the CIJ Etsy Forum and fill out the questionnaire. Please note you must be a member of the CIJ Etsy team to be featured.

Member Feature: joliefemmebydiana

Contributor post by Michelle of EviesToolEmporium

Please join us in welcoming Diana of joliefemmebydiana, our featured member!

joliefemmebydiana

joliefemmebydiana

Tell us about yourself.

I am a lady who loves to sew and create things from fabric. I have lived in New Mexico most of my life and I love the natural landscapes, the light, and the open sky. I am trilingual Spanish, English, and French speaking, reading and writing. I am married and have a supportive husband and two kids that are teens.

When did you open your business and what make you decide to do so?

I started on Etsy in 2008 after a few successful local art and craft shows. I was encouraged and mentored by some friends who were also on Etsy and thought my products would be great to sell online. I tried Etsy and it was easy to set up and I started to get some sales within the first month, so I have stayed.

joliefemmeHangTag

joliefemmeHangTag

Tell us a bit about your products.

I create bags and other fabric accessories like eyeglass cases, pocket wallets, headbands and scarves. I also make items for kids like stuffed animal carriers and teeny totes that match a plush pet. I have recently started creating decorative pillows and pillow covers.u2

What inspires your work?           

The love of fabric really moves me! I love cheerful color and prints from vintage to modern. I am inspired by Frida Kahlo’s art and Dia de los Muertos style fabrics and art.3

What are your future goals for the business this year? What is your dream for this business?

 I am looking forward to refining my product line over the coming year. Working on new ideas for products and hope to surpass 700 sales this year and get close to 800. I will continue to participate in local shows and events and sell at a consignment shop in town. My dream is to continue this business and contribute to my local and Etsy community as much as possible in the future.4

What makes your business stand out from businesses that sell similar products?

Many people sell bags and mine stand out as unique by my style, which is influenced by Frida Kahlo, the artist and my home state. New Mexico is a place with bright sunlight and strong cultural influences from the Hispanic and Native American arts and I try to incorporate the style elements from those cultures that I admire in my work. I love cotton fabric and a sewing machine as much as I love embroidery floss and hand embroidery and I strive to incorporate my skills into my work. I have become interested in using stencils and fabric paint to create expressive new prints on fabric and make pillows or bags from them.5

Tell us a bit about your work space. Do you have a separate studio?

I have a studio at home in a room upstairs where I can keep my supplies and sewing machines and also photograph and display my merchandise. It’s nice to have a quiet and undisturbed work space to create in! I can work and listen to podcasts and still be available to my family and pets.6

What have you learned since opening your business that you wish you had known before hand?

The unexpected will happen. I try to give the best customer service and communication possible but I stay open to admitting if I messed up or forgot something. The relationship with the customer is the most important thing and you need to respect each other and work together to resolve any issues. The same goes for creating, if something I sew doesn’t work, I always try to recycle the fabric into something else. Sometimes I think you just need to focus on the experience and then let it go and move on with gratitude for learning from it.7

Any advice for those thinking about selling on Etsy?

Etsy is a dynamic place where things often change and you just have to be committed to keep learning and working on your craft and your shop. There are many resources and inspiration to be had from teams and off-Etsy blogs and groups. So many free tips and support can be found out there so don’t get frustrated, just reach out and get help.8

When you’re not working, what do you like to do to unwind and have fun? Do you have any hobbies?

I like sewing and embroidery and I come up with projects that help me to keep learning and mastering new skills. I make clothes and am learning to upcycle them into new objects. I stay busy with my pet cats, chickens and turtles. I am learning to garden and create landscaping in my yard too. I hope to get into my vintage RV visit some state and national parks this year too.9

What is your favorite quote?

Nothing is worth more than laughter. It is strength to laugh and to abandon oneself, to be light. Frida Kahlo10

Where can people find out more about your business?  

Etsy: www.etsy.com/shop/joliefemmebydiana

Facebook: https://www.facebook.com/byDiana4U/

Instagram: https://www.instagram.com/joliefemmebydiana/11

 Is there anything else you’d like to share?

I would like to say that I feel there are many talented people in the world and I encourage them to share their gifts with others, whether through teaching or making and selling. It makes our world more beautiful and rich to know that a person created useful and everyday items by hand just for you.12

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If you would like to be featured, please go to the CIJ Etsy Forum and fill out the questionnaire. Please note you must be a member of the CIJ Etsy team to be featured.