Archive for the ‘Handmade’ Category

 

Something Blue

 

Feb
03
2016

 

I just love Etsy and have saved so many of my favourites. I’ll get round to buying some of these, either as gifts for family and friends or just for myself!

At the moment I have a ‘Recently favourited items’ collection and have just been adding all the goodies that I love into this section. I’ve noticed that other people on Etsy have categorised their favourites, such as placing all their fave red or brightly coloured items into different collections. So, I’ve decided to categorise some of my saved blue items into my ‘Something Blue‘ favourites. They’re not actually for brides, but some of them could be! Most of the items in this collection are pale blue, as I favour this shade more so, than a deep and bright blue. The items range from stationery, art prints, brooches, to wallpaper and fashion.

I just love pattern and detailing, and I tend to be attracted to items that have fantastic surface design, as well as colour. It’s also a good resource to have when seeing what other colours go well with the colour blue (which is my new favourited collection), and how other designers use blue within their work. In particular, I love how PurpleFishBowl2 harmonises the stronger red, orange, brown and deep blue colours with pale blue in the printed skirt.  It’s such a great colour combination and they all blend well, nicely! The range of bright and earthy brown colours in MercedesLagunas’ floral art prints are divine. They stand out against the pale blue background and this colour is perfect for this particular print, as there are already two to three blue shades within this piece. The brighter pinks and yellows stand out, but are not overpowering against the selected blue background.

I will however, create collections for other themes, according to their colours, styling, end purpose and so on… To start with I was thinking of presents, such as wedding and illustrated gifts.

Something Blue

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Floral tea-towell / Decorative pin / Plate

Bird Brooch / Floral print

Sailor Doll / Printed skirt

# the printed skirt is now sold, but there are lots of other gorgeous alternatives in the seller’s shop!

 

Emma Jayne x

 

Can you make a living selling craft items?

 

Dec
16
2015

 

It’s not long now, til Christmas. Well actually, it’s just over a week away!

Over this past week, I’ve been super busy creating new designs. Plus, I was gathering all of the goodies that I have in my Etsy shop for a Christmas Artisan & Farmers market, which was held in Stalybridge, Greater Manchester. I’ve never had a stall at this location before; it is a lovely, Victorian building, with white-washed walls and a stone-tiled floor. My stall was in a great position within the market, as the eating area was directly across from me, and the heating was radiated from directly above. People could easily see my prints, notebooks and other stationery items, whilst they were drinking coffee and munching on mince pies.

Here is my stall.

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Photo taken from Sunday’s Artisan & Farmers market. I think a young someone is trying to photo-bomb!

It’s full of colourful items and they definitely caught people’s attention! However, I was rather disappointed, as I didn’t sell as much as I’d hoped. I was actually hoping to sell out, as I’d made sure that I had enough stock for people who were buying for Christmas. Yet, people tended to look but not buy. This had me thinking, and after the event, I tried to assess why my products weren’t selling.

At this particular Artisan & Farmers market, most people were selling food, such as bread, cakes, jams and biscuits. Also, a majority of the products were cheap traditional goods (trying to be careful how I describe what other stall holders were selling, without sounding snobby) and they were neither innovative nor contemporary. These ‘styles’ have been around for some time. I wouldn’t really say that they were kitsch; even though kitsch is ‘dated’, there’s a certain quality which makes them attractive and desirable to buy. I sound terrible don’t I? My products are very colourful and contemporary in style. I do feel that my prints and stationery would be better suited to those places where people like to buy luxury items, desirable and more ‘arty’.

Can you make a living selling craft items?

Here’s a question: Can you make a living selling craft items at a craft fair? In other words, can you turn your hobby into a profitable craft business, at fairs? I see the same small businesses selling their products at craft fairs on regular occasions. I decided to find out how they do it. So I did a bit of investigation and found some information, which is interesting if you want sell at craft fairs. I think UkCraftFairs is a good place to start. Also, check out talented ladies club.

What I will do before I next sell my designs, is to research suitable craft fairs, where my products will best suited. I need to sell where I know people will enjoy my designs and a place where I will have a better chance of making sales. Also, I need to consider how my stall will look from a distance and fine-tune the whole presentation. Some stalls that I’ve noticed from afar have products displayed on shelves. Having shelves would mean that people who are shy or reserved can look without feeling the need to come up close. It can be off-putting for some, if they have to peer over the table. Some people like to browse and not give the stall holder the impression that they will be buying (even though, as a stall-holder, that would be the desired outcome!).

It’s important to look approachable, by just smiling, looking happy and making conversation. I do this anyway, but perhaps I need to pick up some sales techniques! That’s something else I could do with researching, and could possible be an idea for another blog post!!

Here are some photos I’d taken from Sunday’s Artisan & Farmers market, which I’d like to share with you.

 

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Stationery items.

 

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Selection of A3 and A4 prints.

 

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My colourful stall! I even sold cute novelty rubbers, brightly coloured pencils, pom-pom book marks and gift bags.

 

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A sneaky look at the what the marker looked like mid morning.

 

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Brew time! Neil and I wearing our festive sweaters and Santa hats.

 

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Yasmin helped out on the day too.

 

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Yasmin and I taking a quick photo whilst Neil went to take a look round the market.

 

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Me looking rather serious! It was midday and I was beginning to feel tired. I’d had a late night due to attending a Christmas party with Neil the night before, plus I got up early too! (I just love my sleep).

 

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Drinking more tea to keep me awake!

 

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Me waiting patiently for the mad rush, which in the end, didn’t come!

Do you go to craft fairs, either to sell or buy? I’d love to know, which ones you’d recommend!

Emma Jayne x