Tuesday, May 20, 2008

Etsy Seller Spotlight Four!!!!

OK, so I am back from doing a little bit of work out if town and finally ready to feature another AMAZING Etsian! Now, this interview is a special one because this Etsy seller is also one of, if not my best customer on Etsy. Christina of 1337Art has a shop that will totally excite you. She creates items that are so fun, unique and made with love. It is so obvious when you visit her shop. I am a big fan of her gorgeous hand-made bookmarks, personally, and the fact that both of us adore our coffee. I hope you all will stop by and visit Christina's shop soon!

Q: Can you tell us a bit about yourself? Your name, age, where you're from, etc?

My name is Christina. For the first 10 years of my life I lived basically on the outskirts of Seattle in a cozy place called Normandy Park. For the last 10 years I have lived on the Key Peninsula, which is about 40 minutes from Tacoma. My favorite things to do are writing, jewelry making, collage making, photography, and spending time with my fiance. Two random facts: I like wearing black sweaters and long pants in the summer, and I've been a coffee drinker since I was 12.

Q: Your products are so much fun and many of them are unique to anything on Etsy. So, when did you first decide to start you amazing Business? What was the very first product you created?

My business originally began August of 2007 making, designing, and selling jewelry. My supervisor at work and I were really getting into making jewelry, and we both decided to get our business licenses so we can start selling our designs at shows and craft fairs. The first product I created were necklaces, then I moved to earrings and bracelets, and etc.

I've since expanded my business, and I've started off by making what are called ACEOs. These are mini pieces of art the size of trading cards. My first collage work happened in my high school Photography class. We had a semester long assignment of a "photo journal." Mine mainly consisted of bits of photos I've taken and random materials like bus tickets and exposed film. The collages just started appearing, and I'm glad they did.

Q: Where do you get some of your ideas for your products? Do you create most of your products for yourself or friends first, then sell them to others?

I shop around and find supplies that strike me. This has resulted in a *slightly* cluttered bedroom. When holidays and birthdays come around I make friends and family collaged "greeting" cards. Over the last two years I've received a lot of great feedback from them, so I've decided to experiment with the ACEOs for the public. I would say all in all I make things that please me, and if I'm making something for a certain person, I incorporate their interests. My collages and my jewelry designs are all freehand-I rarely plan them out. I just match colors and themes, and the items seem to create themselves.

Q: What is your favorite item to make and what is your most popular item with your customers?

If I had to choose I think my favorites are coffee themed items and collages. All of my coffee items seem to be very popular with customers, and my bookmarks are my biggest seller.

I also love making custom designs for people. It is such a gift to present them with the final product after all of the fun chaos of colors and sizes and style. It is such a fun ordeal.

Q: What is next on your list to create?

Collaged "greeting" cards and collaged bookmarks. Each one will be completely unique and one-of-a-kind. I can't wait to work on those!

Q: Where else do you sell your products?

There is a local farmer's market coming up next month where my friend and I will sell our items every Sunday for the entire summer. The website www.memory-of.com is going to sell one of my items once they have finished setting up their online store. My personal website is still in the works, but when it launches people will have the opportunity to purchase custom pieces as well as items not available on my Etsy.

Q: Whats your personal favorite aspect of owning an Etsy shop?

The community that Etsy is. I've met a lot of great people (including you!), and before Etsy I didn't know that a large amount of people respected and understood the charms of handmade items.

Q: Where do you see your business in a year?

I see it becoming less part time and more full time. (I would love to quit my day job to spend that time working on new products and advertising!) It is possible, but it's something I'll have to truly work hard to accomplish. My goal for the next year is to at least have double the inventory and to focus more on my Collage Art.

Christina has been generous to offer a great coupon to use in her Etsy shop for all my blog readers. Just use the code below in the notes to seller or send her a message if you have more questions about that or anything in her shop.

20% off your purchase of $10 or more (before shipping). Valid until June 16th, 2008.
Coupon Code: gabriel20off10
Visit 1337Art.Etsy.com now!


Rosebud Collection said...

Really good interview..She does beautiful work..

Distressing Delilah said...

Nice interview!