Tag «how etsy alienated its crafters and lost its soul»

Episode 29: Selling on Etsy, Passive Income, and Using Trending Keywords with Alexandra Tavel from Two of Wands

I interviewed Alexandra Tavel, a crochet and knitting maker and designer. Alexandra owns the Etsy shop, Two of Wands. We met up in person in New York City (where we both live) to talk about how she launched her shop, how it became her full time income, and what she enjoys about the platform, as well as other topics related to owning a yarn-based business. You can find complete show notes for today’s episode, including links to everything that was discussed at http://creativeyarnentrepreneur.com/29.

About Alexandra Tavel
Alexandra Tavel earned dual degrees in fashion design and costume construction technology from Indian University. After graduation, she moved to New York City with plans of entering the fashion industry, but she ended up working in a nonprofit organization for 8 years. In late 2013, a series of life changes led to her launching an Etsy shop, Two of Wands, where she sells her finished knit and crocheted projects as well as instant pattern downloads.

About the Interview
Alexandra talked about how she studied Etsy’s blogs and newsletters before opening the Two of Wands Etsy shop to sell finished knit and crochet items in November, 2013.

Alexandra’s signature photographic style actually developed by happenstance. After Etsy launched digital downloads, Alexandra read an Etsy Quit Your Day Job post that inspired her to begin to sell her patterns in her shop as well. Alexandra’s designs started with simple design and construction so that she could easily create and finish finished items, but as she began to see her pattern sales allowing her business to scale, she is reconsidering this approach.

In this very conversational interview, we covered a variety of other business topics.

Now, this interview was recorded several weeks ago before I interviewed Grace Dobush for Episode 28, read Grace’s article in WIRED, “How Etsy Alienated Its Crafters and Lost Its Soul,” and learned about Etsy’s announcement that it filed papers for an Initial Public Offering. If I had a time machine, I would have asked for Alexandra’s feedback on these issues.

Some Updates
My 31 Days to Pod Launch challenge is still going strong! I’ve been releasing an audio file, blog post, and YouTube video daily since March 1. This is my trial by fire on YouTube, and I plan to share what I’ve learned about video production in a future episode. In the meantime, I’d be thrilled if you would check out my new channel on YouTube and subscribe.

I will be presenting at the BlogHer ’15 Conference in New York City along with my friend and fellow solopreneur, Carlota Zimmerman from the Creativity Yenta (who was a guest on Episode 16 and Episode 22). We will be part of a workshop on Friday, July 17, 2015 called Social Media Bootcamp: Lightning Lessons in the Latest: LinkedIn, Google+ Hangouts On Air, and Twitter. If your blog is a major part of your business income (or, you’d like it to be), I hope to see you there! If you haven’t already registered, you can take advantage of our friends and family discount for 30% off the Blogger Rate by registering through the link at http://creativeyarnentrepreneur.com/29..

Ijeoma Eleazu, host of the Etsy Conversations Podcast and a guest on Episode 9 of the Creative Yarn Entrepreneur Show, also highlighted the importance of reading the Etsy seller handbook before launching an Etsy shop. Ijeoma’s podcast was recently touted by Etsy as number one in their list of 10 Podcasts to Help Your Business Thrive. Congratulations, Ijeoma!

I’ll also be attending New Media Expo in Las Vegas from April 13-16, 2015. If you’ll be attending, too, let me know because I’d love to meet you there!

Where do you stand on using Etsy for your yarn-related business? Has your opinion changed since Etsy made its IPO announcement? Leave a comment on the show notes for today’s episode at http://creativeyarnentrepreneur.com/29, Tweet me at @cyeshow, add me to your G+ circle and send me a note, or leave a message at 646-713-8973. (You can call me for free through the Contact page.)

If you enjoyed the show
You can now subscribe to the Creative Yarn Entrepreneur Show on iTunes, Stitcher, or TuneIn. Please leave an honest review on iTunes (or Stitcher).

Episode 28: Indie Craft Fairs, Negotiation, Freelancing, the Hazards of Etsy and More with Grace Dobush

I interviewed Grace Dobush, a full time freelance writer and part-time crafty business owner, in this week’s episode. Grace and I talked about many topics including prepping for your first indie craft show, deciding whether Etsy is the right online marketplace for your craft business, tips for starting up as a freelance writer in the craft scene, negotiating for a higher rate, and more!

Complete show notes for today’s episode are available at http://creativeyarnentrepreneur.com/28.

About Grace Dobush
Grace Dobush is a freelance writer and a part-time crafty business owner. She is the organizer of the Crafty Supermarket, an indie craft show in Cincinnati, Ohio; author of the Crafty Superstar craft business guides for part-time business owners; and the maker of smiley poop emoji ephemera.

About the Interview
I’m a volunteer book reviewer for the Crochet Guild of America’s blog and late last year, I received a review copy of the 2015 Crafter’s Market: How to Sell Your Crafts and Make a Living from F & W Media. (My review will be coming out on the CGOA blog in the near future, and I’ll update this page with a link when that happens.) Since this book is the first Crafter’s Market, I wanted to interview one of the contributors, and Grace was happy to oblige.

In our interview, we talked about the topics covered in Grace’s two chapters in the 2015 Crafter’s Market, “Indie Craft Shows” and “Pricing Your Work.” We also discussed Grace’s February article in WIRED, “How Etsy Alienated Its Crafters and Lost Its Soul” and Etsy’s recent announcement about filing a registration statement for an initial public offering (IPO). I referenced a recent discussion with Beate at Patterns Tried and True about whether Etsy is the best online marketplace for yarn crafters, as well as an interview I did with Alexandra Tavel from Two of Wands on Etsy that I’ll be sharing on the podcast next week.

Grace also shared her tips for getting started as a freelance writer in the crafting space, as well as her philosophy on negotiation.

What is your experience with craft shows? How have you identified the right venues for your business? Leave a comment at http://creativeyarnentrepreneur.com/28, Tweet me at @cyeshow, add me to your G+ circle and send me a note, or leave a message at 646-713-8973. (You can call me for free through the Contact page.)

If you enjoyed the show
You can now subscribe to the Creative Yarn Entrepreneur Show on iTunes, Stitcher, or TuneIn. Please leave an honest review on iTunes (or Stitcher) and join the mailing list. I’ll let people on the list know in advance about special guests and topics so you can share your questions.