When I first opened my Etsy store (http://www.jewelrybyjenn.etsy.com/) in October, I didn't really set any goals for myself. I had absolutely no idea what I was doing but decided that I wanted to have fun, maybe make a little extra spending money (for supplies of course!), and share my ideas and creations with other people. Little did I realize how much fun it would be to work so hard! On top of creating jewelry and learning new techniques I've had to learn photography, editing, copywriting, and marketing. I will admit, at first I was totally overwhelmed and almost threw in the towel but I kept plugging along, posting in the forums, asking for advice, and trying my hand at marketing on sites like twitter (www.twitter.com/jewelrybyjenn), plumdrop (www.plumdrop.com/jewelrybyjenn), and, of course, blogspot.
Then I made my first sale. The feeling of accomplishment and euphoria was indescribable! It was this bracelet:
(which is relisted by the way, http://www.etsy.com/view_listing.php?listing_id=17929681)
I haven't looked back since then.
I have to say, though, that I gained a whole lot more than a few dollars and some added web expertise (expertise is pushing it but you get the idea). I met some of the most amazing people, some of whom I now consider my friends. The community at Etsy is absolutely amazing. Not one person that I have asked advice from or "spoken" to has treated me badly or hesitated to answer my sometimes stupid questions. So, thank you, Etsy, for bringing me to these absolutely amazing and creative people!
In honor of all the fine craftspersons on Etsy, I want to highlight a list of shops today instead of just one. In the third round of WITB (http://www.etsy.com/forums_thread.php?thread_id=5970252&page=1) we have already accumulated some awesome shops that are contributing to the final prize ($20 gift certificates for 50 people). Here is the most current list:
ROUND 3 Feature Sellers Include:
1. FromMyHandsToYours.etsy.com - DESTASH, jewelry, scarves, shredded t's
2. LizardQueenJewelry.etsy.com - ONE OF A KIND & Custom Jewelry
3. JewelryByJenn.etsy.com - CUSTOM jewelry at AFFORDABLE prices
4. LuckyRosiesCreations.etsy.com - one of a kind creations
5. JodayCraf.etsy.com - handmade and vintage jewelry
6. Desera21.etsy.com - handmade bows and clippies :)
7. HavenDawnDesigns.etsy.com - stunning handmade pendants
8. ClearLakeCreations.etsy.com - handmade quality bath and beauty
9. AnTeris.Etsy.com - Original fiction
10. LiviasJewelry.Etsy.com - Jewelry, rosaries & spiritual jewelry
11. greenfamilytree.etsy.com - eco friendly house, bath, & beauty
12. LincolnChristian.etsy.com - unique glass tile pendants
13. MacriPhotography.etsy.com - Fine art photography
14. AudreysCountryCrafts.etsy.com - decorative/tole painting
Please take some time to look thru these shops! It won't be a waste of your time, I promise.
Why is it that I always start out wanting to talk about one thing and then talking about another? Let me just say this about goals: My number one goal this year is to have fun. The minute this stops being fun, I will close up my shop. As far as sales numbers go, I really don't have a goal for that, other than I would like to make enough to pay for my supplies so that I can keep creating. That, for me, is the important part to all of this. Creating beautiful things that others can enjoy along with me is the whole reason I am here. I am lucky that I don' t need to rely upon this as a livelyhood. I know there are those of you that do rely on it that way and I commend you. I don't think I'd have the guts for that! Irregardless of the reason you are here, I hope that you will continue to also have fun in this new year. I know I will be.