Happy Etsy-versary to ME! 5 years selling on Etsy.com

WOW!! I never expected Etsy.com to consume my everyday life, when I signed up one cold, unassuming winter 5 years ago. Here I am, everyday, countless hours online, working, selling, packaging, connecting- all because of one "little" website. At least it was when I signed up!

Use the code BIRTHDAY5 during checkout
to receive an instant discount in my shop
Jan 18-22!

I was making mosaics in 2005-06, and looking for better ways/places to sell my stuff. I wasn't currently working, as I waitressed in the summers (long and hard hours) so that I could carry myself through the winters making/selling mosaics. I made mirrors, frames, candle holders- whatever base I could find that suited my taste. I did some craft shows, which I loved because I could interact with people, see what they thought firsthand. I tried ebay, and it was fine, but wasn't personal like the little craft shows were. I knew there had to be a better way.above: mosaic tile candle plates 2006

My sisters were in town, banished from New Orleans after Hurricane Katrina. They were waiting out the storm in a wintry Massachusetts while they figured out new life plans.
We were all kind of in a holding place.
I was able to brainstorm with them a lot that winter, while they were in town.
One sister heard of Etsy.com, some kind of website where you could only sell handmade things.


So I joined that week. I KNEW I was onto something when there were only four other mosiacs on the WHOLE site. You heard me right, the whole site. Four. Four objects with mosaic on them.
So I jumped. I figured out how to list when the pages would only change every few hours. If there was a lot of blue on the page, I would list a red item so it would stand out.

I figured out all the little things I could do to be seen. I also decided that I didn't want to deal with bubble wrap and packaging.
So I immediately went small.
I created glass tile pendants just for my Etsy shop. The first item sold for $5 three weeks after opening my shop. HOORAY! I was thrilled. It was enough to fuel the fire!

above: Lousy product photo of first sale I made on Etsy, Feb 2006.

So, here I am 5 years later. Totally happy.
I don't make anything with tiles anymore. I went with the ebb and flow of the years, and let myself and my work change as I wanted. I also pay attention to what works and what sells, and what I enjoy making. I have a full-on business now making jewelry!
Who thought I would be making jewelry with my time? Not me!

I am still thrilled every single time I make a sale. It makes me feel like my time and work is valuable to others. I have learned almost everything about business from selling my work online. I still do craft shows too, I now apply to the ones that I used to think were the "all stars" when I was a kid. It feels pretty good to have my own business. And I thank Etsy for giving me the tools to start it all from scratch, with my own two hands. Hurrah!

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1 comment:

jascsamille said...

I've been a fan of your shop since.. forever. I'm so happy for you & your success.