Team member heartsabustin has taken on a handful of question about life, art, and business!
Q. What are your inspirations?
A. I love nature - God was the first artist, and I think he did a pretty fine job. ;)
I also love walking into a fabric store and letting the color combinations I see in there inspire me. Going to the mall for me is research - I like to see what clothes are out for a season, what colors designers are using, and how I might be able to complement those colors in my jewelry.
Q. How do you balance your family life and personal life with your work responsibilities, including running an Etsy shop?
A. It's not easy, because my family is demanding! Seriously, I try to make sure the computer is turned off when my husband gets home and I make efforts to get up and play with my kids. It's so easy to sit here and *will* sales by staring at the screen. LOL
We have homework now, and they love to play games, so I get up and do that stuff with them. The crafting takes place when I can work it in.
Right now, I'm trying to concentrate on my newest love of working with precious metal clay. That's slow going because the supplies are not as readily available as I would like them to be!
Q. How do you promote your Etsy business? What types of promotion have been most successful for you? Least effective?
A. I run ads on Craftcult and Craftopolis, I have Twitter and a Facebook Fan Page (highly recommended if you don't already have one!), and I lurk in chat (obviously!!!) and the forums a great deal. (JS notes: heartsabustin has a blog too.) The more places you are and the more active you are, the better your exposure is. The least effective thing I've done is take out a Showcase on Etsy. For the same money, I can get a whole week of advertising on Craftcult.
Q. Knowing what you do now, is there anything you would have done differently when you first opened your shop?
A. I would have researched the photography part a little better. My pictures have improved by leaps and bounds since I've been here. And I would have relaxed a little bit more. I was terrified at taking such a big step into running a business. I would never have made it through if it hadn't been for my mom and my husband. Great supporters are they!
Q. What are three Etsy items you would buy today if you could, and if money was not an object?
A. Anything from TheLeatherStore.
One of WickedSoaps gift sets - for me! - in White Raspberry Truffle. Yum!
The vine necklace in MangosteenJewelry's Etsy shop. Gorgeous! She's one of my new PMC friends. What a sweetheart!
Next time...heartsabustin asks another Chat Team member five questions of her own!