Friday, April 30, 2010

Favourite Etsy Shop Friday

Favourite Etsy Shop Feature

A Fine Distraction

1. Tell us a bit about yourself.
My name is Sarah Jones and I live in a pretty suburb of Atlanta. I'm a married mom of two amazing girls, 3 and 9. My family and my Etsy shop are my great passions as well as my occupations. My obsession with beads began about 10 years ago with a project to make a set of wine stem charms for my mom for Christmas. Once I started looking at beads, an addiction was born. I quickly realized I was going to have to figure out a way to support my expensive habit so I started looking for venues where I could sell my creations.

2. What made you open your shop and why Etsy?

I found Etsy by accident. (I was selling on ebay at the time.) I remember that I was searching for something on the web and a link to an Etsy shop popped up. I'm sure most of my evening was eaten up by exploring the site. I was absolutely amazed at the artistry and professionalism. The photography alone was so inspiring. I had to sign up and learn all I could.

3. Do you sell your jewelry anywhere else?
Currently, Etsy is my only home. I sometimes think I would like to expand and then I remind myself how many hours are in a day.

4. How did you choose your shop name?
My shop name was derived from a poem called, "Delight in Disorder" by 17th Century English poet, Robert Herrick. It makes imperfection sound gloriously sexy, so of course, I'm a huge fan.

5. What are your favourite things to do?
I love to create, read, write, learn, build forts with my girls, cook with my husband, and help things grow.

6. What inspires you?

I'm a big nature freak and a fan of noticing the little things. I love looking at fashion and art, but I can't really "do" either. I try to stay aware of trends and might incorporate a color or theme that seems to be hot, but in the end, I do what I love and just try to make beautiful things.

7. Which pieces of jewelry do you enjoy making the most?
The piece of jewelry I enjoy creating the most is the new one. Too much repetition gets me down.

8. What piece of jewelry is your most popular?

The blooming earrings are popular all year. Last fall, I was delighted when my "Little Pumpkin" earrings sold very well. They're a favorite of mine to wear.

9. Which handmade possession given to you do you cherish?
Of course, I have a lot of little handmade treasures from my kids. Besides those, I would have to say the blue and white afghan that my Nana crocheted for me when I went off to college. It was a little piece of home, as lovely and warm as she was in life.

10. Name 3 other Etsy shops you love to visit.

Only 3?? I think I have around 600 shops listed in my favorites right now. Instead of naming three, I'll refer you to my wonderful, unofficial Etsy team, the Daily Sweets. I know much of my success on Etsy has been about seeking and taking some great advice from these ladies, not to mention, the support and humor I know I can always find on our thread in the Team forum on Etsy. You can discover all of their amazing shops here, on the right hand side of the page.

Thank you so much to A Fine Distraction for being my featured Etsy shop this week. I love how her jewelry has a vintage look but with a modern twist. I especially love the colours that are used. Everything just seems to fit. Not only is the jewelry beautiful but the photos of each piece are stunning. As an Etsy shop owner I can tell you that sometimes it is the taking pictures of your products that is the hardest thing to do. These pictures could be used just as photography art. If you like this small glimpse of what is available at A Fine Distraction, then you need to visit this shop and see what else there is, because you will love it all.

Friday, April 16, 2010

Favourite Etsy Shop Friday

Favourite Etsy Shop Friday

Judy Stalus

1. Tell us a bit about yourself.
I live on a beautiful 50 acre farm in New Hampshire with my husband and daughter. I used to practice law in Boston but I now practice art full time. A little (well a LOT) less lucrative but much more fun.

2. What made you open your shop and why Etsy?
My friend Loribeth ( told me about Etsy. I was looking for a way to sell my photographs online without investing a lot of money.

3. Do you sell your photographs anywhere else?
I sell my photographs in several galleries including Noa in the Boston area, the Vermont Center for Photography, and the Walpole Artisans Cooperative

4. What are your favourite things to do?
I garden and photograph my garden, knit and bead. You can read about my garden on my blog, You can see my bead and knit work in my shop www.
I am also on the Board of Director of our local cooperative gallery, The Walpole Artisans Cooperative, which grew out of our annual artisan tour. Aside from providing a venue to sell my photography and jewelry it is simply wonderful to have a group of supportive artists to work and share with. Making art can be a lonely, isolated job and having the friendship of other artists is vital.

5.What inspires you?
My garden, my land. As a photographer I tend to photograph what is around me. Over the years my inspiration has changed as my life changed.

6. What is your favourite thing to photograph?
Garden, flowers, sky, water.

7. Which is your most popular photograph?
I couldn't really say which is my most popular photograph. I sell a lot of peony cards, the peony is the queen of all flowers to me.

8. You have so many flowers which one do you love the most?
I have so many favorite flowers, I tend to love big, lush, decadent blooms - parrot tulips, peonies, iris, poppies, and lilacs for their intoxicating scent. Some of the old roses are also gorgeous and fragrant.

9.Which handmade possession given to you do you cherish?
Gifts made by daughter of course, a pink felt heart sachet, a little knit bag, a felt book for pins

10. Name 3 other Etsy shops you love to visit.
Etsy shops I like a lot:

Maminka Girl Studio
Virginia Wyoming
Xanadu 2 You

A big thank you to Judy Stalus for being my featured seller this week. Dont you just love these photos. They are simply beautiful. I would love to favourite all of them. You have to go and look at all of these photos. I love the idea of the scanned flowers. So different and new. If your a lover of flowers then this is the shop for you.

Friday, April 9, 2010

Favourite Etsy Shop Friday......sort of

I had a hard time arranging an interview for the feature this week. I have one set up for next week so for this week I will just put a link to a couple of shops that take my fancy. This is not as exciting I know.

I have also been a bit slack on posting during the week. My Victoria got sick and I have been working on a custom order lately. Some wonderful socks using hand painted yarn. I will have to post pictures when they are finished which should be soon. I have also been meaning to show off the stegosaurus I made for Victoria. Steggy hasnt left her side since I gave him to her 2 weeks ago. He was my first attempt at knitting and felting a toy and it turned out great.

So the two shops that I wanted to show off this week are

Dancing In The Rains

This shop is so so cute. Lots of cute kitties with very smiley faces and you cant leave out the turtle coasters. Not made of real turtles of course but something original and cute to put your drinks on. Definitely a conversation starter. But go and check out this shop because those kitties will bring a smile to your face and brighten your day.


This is a shop filled with fuzzy bunnies and guinea pigs in all sorts of colours. They look so soft and fluffy that you could swear they are about to get up and hop away. I have noticed that these bunnies get featured on the Etsy front page alot and for good reason. They are just so darn cute. Whenever I see them I just want to scoop one up and give it a hug. If you havent already seen this shop go and check it out and if you already seen this shop go and check it again because I am sure you will fall in love all over again.

Friday, April 2, 2010

Favourite Etsy Shop Friday

Favourite Etsy Shop Feature

polkadots & blooms

1. Tell us a bit about yourself.

My name is Heidi, a mum of two beautiful girls and a designer/maker of homewares and accessories made from vintage fabrics. Originally from the northern part of Germany, I have lived in the UK for the past 15 years. I launched polkadots & blooms in September 2009 with the opening of my Etsy shop.

2. What made you open your shop and why Etsy?

I had been thinking about launching my own business for years, but either my business ideas or the timing were not quite right. Then everything seemed to fall into place. I was made redundant, which I took as my opportunity to set up on my own. I wanted to sell sustainable and quality accessories and homewares but it soon became clear that I wanted to be involved in the whole process of designing, making and selling not just the selling side of a business. Another mum then introduced me to Etsy and I was probably hooked after my first few clicks. I grew up with many different crafts - knitting, sewing, embroidery, weaving - but had ignored my creative side more or less for years to pursue a business career. Since I launched polkadots & blooms I am in a much happier place.

3. Do you sell you items anywhere else?

I am also selling on (British website) and (German website). I completed my first wholesale order for a boutique in Norfolk, UK and am in discussion with two other boutiques in Germany and Italy. I also sell at craft fairs.

4. How did you choose your shop name?

I wanted a name that reflects the vintage aspect of my business. Both polkadots and flowers are very representative of vintage fabrics and polkadots & blooms was born.

5. What are your favourite things to do?

I love the performing arts and really cherish my visits to the theatre. I've started taking my eldest to the theatre, which is just fantastic. I also have a weakness for fabulous architecture and love to explore houses and buildings.

6. What inspires you?

Definitely nature. But my biggest inspiration at the moment are my two girls. I discover and re-discover so many things through them. For example, my eldest is really taken by dandelions, which she also calls fairy flowers. Through her I have re-discovered dandelions and incorporated them into my embroidery designs for cozies and cushions.

7. What made you decide to use vintage fabrics for you items?

I grew up with recycling, re-using or even re-inventing an item's use when necessary, this combined with an urge to live a more sustainable life made the decision to use vintage fabrics an easy one. Sometimes when I hold an 80 or 90 year old piece of linen in my hands, I can't help thinking who may have used it and what its story is. I think there is this added bit of mystery and peek into the past that makes vintage fabric extra special.

8. What is your most popular item?

Definitely my linen baskets, followed by my vintage linen christmas stockings.

9. What handmade possession given to you do you cherish?

Unfortunately, it has long since perished but I still have pictures. When I was in primary school my mum sewed this amazingly beautiful tafeta gown for the carnival season for me. I still have it in my minds eye, it was light blue and adorned with fresh flowers all over it.

10. Name 3 other Etsy shops you love to visit.

It is difficult to only choose three, as there are so many amazing shops on Etsy, but I will chose some of my more recent shop finds:
MaaP Studio - gorgeous porcelain jewellery
lightexture - stunning lighting
Knit Frekkles - beautiful scarves (not just for winter)

Thank you so much to polkadots & blooms for being my featured shop for this week. I found this shop a few weeks ago and fell in love with the linen baskets and the embroidered linen pillows. I love the fact that the material is vintage. It gives it a story. I too love to hold the material in hand and imagine its history. I cant believe that this talent and creativity has not been utilized for so many years. Thank goodness she has found her creative outlet in Etsy and we all get to benefit from it. Take a look at this shop and you find beautiful things that you can use in your every day life.