2012年08月20日

Etsy a boon to jewelry makers, crafters

FREDERICK - Some are doing it just to make their hobby self-sustaining. Others, to bolster their children's college funds. A few manage to make a real living at it after quitting their 9-to-5 jobs. But all see it as an outlet for their creative energy.


Lesley Hornbeck owns the Etsy shop sells ago Whimsy Bags and tote bags from her Frederick home.
The "it" is Etsy,
schmuck,a 7-year-old online marketplace for jewelry makers, accessory or home decor, designers and crafters of all kinds.

In the Six months after it first launched in June 2005, about $ 170,000 worth of merchandise was sold by "shop owners" on the site. Last year, sales more than $ 525 million Totaled.

Frederick shop owners say the site has grown for a lot of reasons - among them the fact that artists and crafters who feel the creative drive to produce more items than they know what to do with the extra cash could use.

One test subject is Julia Redman, a 33-year-old from Thurmont who sells orchids in her Etsy shop.

Redman was interested in from an early age houseplants. Sometime in high school, "I decided that orchids were the holy grail," charms anhänger, she said. She has been working with the notoriously hard-to-grow plants ever since.

"It finally did reach a point where I had more plants than I had room," she said.

That's when she got the idea to sell plants on eBay. Eventually she, moved her business to her Etsy shop and created, Sapphire Child. While she would like to do more business through Etsy someday, she does not have the time or resources to turn a profit quite yet.

Vicki Robinson owns River Glass Jewelry and lives in Frederick with her husband and three children. She started a shop in part to manage a growing collection.

"Once the kids started going to school and stuff, I wanted something to do," said Robinson, who once worked as a nurse.

She took a class and started making jewelry pieces regularly in January 2009. In October of that year,schmuck zürich, she started her Etsy shop, listing 18 items of her at first.

According to Robinson, "once you sell your first thing, that's when the addiction takes off" after gaining more business-sense through the site, "I can just fuel my addiction," she said.

Robinson, 45, said she reached $ 30,000 in sales, last year from her glass-bead earrings, bracelets and necklaces that range in price from roughly $ 30 to $ 90

Lesley Hornbeck, 43, uses Etsy as her primary source of income. Frederick A mom of three children 6 years old and younger, Hornbeck once worked in an office.

With her husband, a government contractor, state or even out of the country for extended periods of the time, "It just got to be too much,"ketten, she said. And, like many people, "I really wanted to not have a boss."

She had some experience with making appliqué bags as favors for a friend's table-scaping business. After quitting her office job, she decided to explore further bag-making.

She started at Etsy shop in April 2011, and this year, she expects to make $ 75,000 in sales.

The shop, Whimsy Bags, experienced its first growing pains during the 2011 holiday shopping season, when Hornbeck woke up one morning to a few hundred new orders. Shortly thereafter, she hired to assistant who now does a lot of her heat-pressing and shipping.

From her home computer, Hornbeck creates graphics from non-licensed images she finds online. Then she prints them out and uses a commercial-grade heat press to apply them to tote bags, shirts and pillow cases. She's made more than 2.000 sales so far.

She credits her success to marketing herself, communicating with customers and adding new products frequently. Her process is therefore not very labor intensive.

"We can conceivably put out 100 dead a day if we need to," she said.

That is not true for home shop owner Stacie Spencer, who makes jewelry out of precious metal clay in her New Market. One of Spencer's pieces requires several time-consuming steps, even the smallest charms. Her prices range from $ 18 to $ 200

"I would love to grow my Etsy shop into a full-time job," she said. Her goal is to save enough children for college for her two.

Through building a presence on social media sites like Facebook, Twitter and Pinterest, plus Maintaining a blog, she has her customer base Increased Significantly since she opened the shop and is on track to double sales from her last year in 2012. She has also taken photography classes at Frederick Community College to optimize the online images of her pieces and taught herself about adding key words to her listings to make them easy to find.

"You get what you put into it," said Spencer, 50 "If you put the work in, you'll see good results."
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