Tag Archive: weimaraner


Happy Birthday Chase!

20130915-094135.jpg

My little buddy Chase turned 1 today! Please join me in wishing him a Happy Birthday!

20130427-174259.jpg

I am very pleased to be donating these two Betty Bracelets to the Tri-State Weimaraner Rescue. The Rescue is an all volunteer non-profit organization organization which helps to place rescued Weimaraners in loving homes in NJ, PA, and DE.

I have dubbed the bracelets “The Gray Ghosts,” as this is a very common nickname for the Weimaraner breed. The bracelet on the left was crafted with larger light gray and smaller sky blue recycled glass beads accented by a dragonfly toggle. The bracelet on the right has a charcoal gray and bright pink color combo with a tropical hibiscus toggle. They will be featured prizes for the silent auction at the Rescue’s 7th Annual Fundraiser and Volunteer Picnic, which will be held next Saturday, May 4th from 12:00 to 4:00 in Lumberton, NJ. More info is available here:

Tri-State Weimaraner Rescue

Thanks for stopping by!

Shanti,
Erin

20130413-160037.jpg

Now that the two doggies are getting acclimated, I feel like my life is finally getting back to normal and I am able to spend time on all of the other things I enjoy. (Although what could be more enjoyable than a new puppy!) Last night, I attended an awesome Black Crowes show in Philly and today I am working on my hand-crafted jewelry business. I am starting off by wrapping up this business planning series of my blog and then I will be weaving away to get my inventory up for summer craft shows. I wanted to share a picture of the two best buds – Mia, who will be five next month, and our new edition, Chase, who just turned seven months:

20130413-161139.jpg

MARKETING WITHIN ETSY

The previous posts in this series have chronicled my my business planning journey through the following areas: narrowing the scope of my craft, branding my image, adding finishing touches, setting goals, and setting up an online shop. Now, I am going to focus on what I have done to spread the word about my business and resources I use to expand my business.

Why Choose Etsy?

I originally chose to set up shop with Etsy almost two years ago because the fees were very reasonable, online support is very good, and the Etsy community is very active. At that time, very few of my friends had heard of the online marketplace, but now Etsy has become more mainstream – most shoppers use it as the go to source for anything handmade. While I do like that Etsy is becoming more well known, I am concerned that it is becoming too big to maintain an indie edge. Even so, I still think it is one of the best starting points for an online presence for your crafting business.

It’s All Karma

One of the first things I learned about being a member of the Etsy community is to share the love. One of the best ways to improve your standings in search results is to have items that have many views and fav’s. I make it a practice to add items to my favorites for any shop owner who has favorited my work. It is a simple, yet powerful practice.

Treasuries are curated collections created by Etsy members. I usually have time to create 1-2 treasuries per month. When I do, I typically follow a PIF (pay it forward) rule: if I am featured in someone’s treasury, I will promote it, add the other items to my favorites, and feature the curator in my next collection.

Both of these practices are very common in the Etsy community, and I have found that by staying active, I have gotten my shop much more exposure.

20130413-163917.jpg

This is a gorgeous treasury in which I was recently featured.

Build a Local Network

The Etsy community is made up of teams for members to join to network with other like-minded members. Some of the teams I belong to are the Hippie Peaceniks, Bohemian Lovers, and Beachy Things. For anyone following my blog, these surely seem like obvious choices for me. But the one team that I consider to be the most important is the South Jersey Etsians. I am a leader on this team (which just recently reached 100 members!) and maintain a very active status. As its name suggests, this team is very localized: most members live in the south western counties of the state (the ones closest to the city of Philadelphia). The main advantage of such a localized team is that we are able to host regular marketing mixers to meet in person to network. While I acknowledge the importance of staying connected in the cyber world, I must admit that I am old school and sometimes you just can’t beat face to face contact. If you are unable to find a localized team on Etsy, don’t be afraid to start one and invite members in – it will really help you cultivate a wonderful community of fellow local artisans and friends. And if you live in South Jersey and have a shop on Etsy, come join our team!

South Jersey Etsians

MARKETING OUTSIDE OF ETSY

20130413-165706.jpg

Social Media is such an important part of today’s world, that it would almost be foolhardy to not take advantage of the marketing possibilities it holds. There are so many choices – Facebook, Twitter, LinkedIn, Pinterest, YouTube, Instagram, blogging – that it can feel so overwhelming! I fear that if I dedicated time to each social media outlet, I would not have any time left over to make my jewelry! I decided the social media outlets I would use to market my business would be the same ones that I use for everyday communication. I actually do not spend much time on Facebook or Twitter, so I do not market regularly through them. I do enjoy reading blogs and I am quite addicted to Pinterest, so I have chosen to market through those outlets. I am proud to say that I have gotten many views and a few sales from both as well! My best advice to my readers is to be consistent with whichever social media you choose. If you choose to market through Facebook because you update your timeline everyday, then you should also be updating your shop page just as frequently.

I love to take photos, so I am intrigued by the Instagram concept, and I am considering adding it as a marketing tool. What social media do you use to market your Etsy shop? Where have you found the most success? I would love to hear about it in my comments section.

If you would like to check out my Pinterest boards, you can do so here:

http://pinterest.com/serendipityblu/

BLOG RESOURCES

I have found the following blogs to be extremely beneficial in my business planning and I encourage all of my readers to follow them:

Oh My! Handmade

Handmadeology

Thanks for stopping by, and once again joining me on my business planning journey!

Shanti,
Erin

20130326-203150.jpg

One of my favorite quotes from one of my favorite movies, Almost Famous, is “To truly love some silly little piece of music, or some band, so much that it hurts…” And this quote pretty much sums up how I have felt for the past 22 years about my favorite band, Pearl Jam. There was quite a bit of buzz over the Internet this past weekend about PJ. First, Mike Einziger, lead guitarist of Incubus, tweeted to his followers a picture of him accompanying Eddie Vedder and Einziger’s girlfriend in a recording studio with the caption,”In the studio with my girl and Eddie Vedder, recording strings for Pearl Jam’s new album.” This tweet was first picked up by famed LA radio station, KROQ. The accompanying story was that Eddie and Mike were recording strings for Pearl Jam’s new album. This story was then picked up by several other rock music sites all over the Internet. The next day, the music magazine, SPIN, posted a clarification from Pearl Jam’s representative that Mike’s girlfriend, Ann Marie Simpson, an accomplished violinist, was actually the one who was contributing to the new album. Mike Einziger also tweeted the same clarification. Boy, am I glad we cleared that up, but I think we need to focus on the important fact at the center of this whole misunderstanding:

PEARL JAM IS FINALLY BACK IN THE STUDIO WORKING ON THEIR LATEST ALBUM!

So today’s life lesson for me is to focus on what is truly important and let everything else take care of itself. In my last post, I proudly shared the newest edition of my family, Chase the Weimaraner puppy. Having a puppy is a huge adjustment and I am making sure I spend the appropriate amount of time with him to get him acclimated to his new home. As a result, I have had to readjust the schedule for my business, Serendipity Blu. I originally planned to have at least 75 items in my shop for the summer season and to schedule at least two craft shows for the summer. I committed to two shows in Cape May, NJ in July and August, but I have no additional inventory other than what is listed in my Etsy shop. I had to decide what is more important: making new inventory for my shop or start to prepare for the shows. Since my shop is hovering around 50 well assorted items, I decided to focus on creating my craft show inventory, and I am proud to say, this week I crafted 10 new Betty Bracelets! I am also proud to say that Chase has yet to chew up the leather cord.

20130326-214015.jpg

I should probably also post on the importance of not spreading any unsubstantiated rumors, since that is how my story began. But I must be honest…I love the Philadelphia Phillies almost as much as I love Pearl Jam. So when people assume that Chase is named after Chase Utley, even though he is not, I usually do not correct them. (Yes, Chase is posing with a Phillie Phanatic toy!)

Thanks for stopping by!
Erin

my new favorite diversion

20130324-073018.jpg

Sometimes life gets in the way of your goals. I find it is always best to let life just happen and go from there, especially when life means a new puppy!

I would like to introduce all of my readers to Chase. He is a six month old Weimaraner my family adopted last week. He has only one eye (due to an infection when he was only a few days old) and some health issues, but he is still quite spirited and doesn’t let it keep him down. I think we can all learn something from that. He is also such a sweet little guy!

I must admit that I have been slacking on my business planning and goals this past week because I have been spending time bonding with Chase and getting him used to his new surroundings. But look at that face…can you blame me? And, by the way, he also finds leather to be very delicious – so I need to find a puppy-proof spot to weave my Betty Bracelets and Beach Bum Chokers!

Stay tuned in the coming weeks for more posts on both the business and the creative sides of crafting. Thanks for stopping by!

Peace, love, and puppies!
Erin

%d bloggers like this: