Happy May everyone and, specifically, Happy Cinco De Mayo! I am starting off this first full week of May by going local with my Etsy interview and spotlight. I found LiciaPots.Etsy.com while seeking out new shops to spotlight in the Promos Forum of Etsy's Community. The first thing I noticed about this shop was how incredibly unique (I use that word a lot) her items were. I think the toilet paper roll beaded pendant is what got me! I was thrilled to find out that she ran her shop from a city just North of me and that living an environmentally friendly life was a priority for her. So, I had to feature her. Without further ado, I would like to introduce you guys to LiciaPots!
Q: Can you tell us a bit about yourself? Your name, age, where your from, etc?
My name is Licia and I was born in 1976 and raised in Seattle. I am interested in living a more sustainable lifestyle and our household has taken many steps to reach that goal. One of which is we each have our own home based business. He is a landscape designer, and in addition to my part time job I have begun to take more serious steps to growing LiciaBeads. I also currently maintain each of our websites.
Several years ago I purchased a diesel vehicle which I fill with Biodiesel from waste soybean oil. Considering the mileage that I get, it is still cheaper than my last car, even with the higher cost of the fuel. Solar power and other major sustainability investments are in our future. Slowly but surely we hope to minimize the cost of living by making the right choices earlier rather than later.
This is a major part of how we make decisions, and any purchases would support our goals toward a better future.
If you want to know more I have a blog that I maintain at www.LiciaPots.blogspot.com
Q: There are so many jewelry makers on Etsy and, specifically, beaded jewelry, but I found your shop full of unique and fun accessories! So, when did you first decide to start you amazing Business? What was the very first product you created?
The bead obsession began when my sister and a friend of hers started beading. I slowly began accumulating unnecessary amounts of beads from local stores around the area and started to make things for friends, family and teachers. The very first product I created was probably in 1990 when I started making single strand necklaces with letter beads for other students at my high school.
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 like a lot of the ideas already out there, but at the same time I don't want to do the same thing as I see. I am always thinking of ways to do something that I have not seen before. Most of my inspiration comes from nature which may be evident in the names and descriptions of my work. A lot of the inspiration comes from our landscape design business and the plants that I am around on a regular basis.
I just create them in general... I have kept a couple just for me after they were completed. I guess I grow attached. If I create for people I know, I try to customize it to their tastes. Most everything I create is intended to be available on Etsy.
Q: What is your favorite item to make and what is your most popular item with your customers?
My favorites to make are those that have a lot of color and stand out more than most basic jewelry. They tend to keep my interest when I am creating them and allow me to break more "rules" in creating them. I enjoy creating with seed beads because of the intricate patterns and designs that they allow, and the smaller the better.
Another thing I enjoy is creating custom pieces. My sister, who likes beads but doesn't have the willpower to complete a project with seed beads, likes to give me beads to create something for her. She lives only a few miles from Shipwreck Beads, which claims to be the worlds largest bead store, and I don't disagree. The custom jewelry I have made for her are among my favorites.
I can really only base my most popular item by it's etsy hearts so far. It would have to be the Toilet Paper Pendant. Everyone has a good laugh at it.
Q: What is next on your list to create?
If only there were a list. In a way I am trying to test the market for what is most saleable. I have enough beads to continue with items similar to what I already have for sale. I like working with wire, so currently I have a few projects started using some colored wire.
My sister (who has a regular opinion) is tempting me to make items with larger beads. She most recently brought me some lava beads that are 25mm and rather heavy. I have no idea how to use them... It's always in the back of my mind, those big beads need to be used somehow.
Q: Where else do you sell your products?
I only sell on Etsy. I don't want to spread myself too thin, and Etsy works for my purposes. Plus, if I sell something, I can easily buy something! What's not to like about that?
Q: Whats your personal favorite aspect of owning an Etsy shop?
I actually have two Etsy shops. LiciaPots, in which I hope to eventually sell items made from clay. The Japanese teahouse pottery studio is in the early stages of preperation. LiciaBeads is the other shop, which I opened not long ago because it made more sense to call it LiciaBeads, since I sell beads on it. The "plan" is to sell out in LiciaPots and just use LiciaBeads for the jewelry... we'll see how it works out.
I really enjoy the community aspect of being a part of Etsy. I think it is important to teach the hand makers craft to others and pass on what it means to create to other generations. The art that is available really tells a story of each person and what their world is like at that particular place and time. I like that connection, and as we get older a specific item can take us back to that place and time in history. It's like a tactile memory. I like that I am a part of it.
Q: Where do you see your business in a year?
Ultimately I would like LiciaBeads to be able to maintain itself and if I could have a little extra spending money I would not complain. I'm really just happy to be able to create and have a forum where I can express myself.
Licia has been kind enough to extend a special offer to all the readers here! All customers who use the code "Gabriels Aunt Spring Bonus" in the notes to seller will receive a special gift with any purchase (valid until June 26th only!). You can always send a message to Licia with any questions about this or any item in her shop!
Visit LiciaPots.Etsy.com today!!!!!!