Friday, January 2, 2009

Etsy Artisan Interview: Quirky Dolls

If you're wanting to test your glue gun skills, and end up with a fun and usable product, then you have to check out QuirkyDolls. Terry has rag dolls and kits available in her shop, and I‘ll tell you now, you can’t miss her videos. But more about that later....

  • What's the name of your Etsy shop?

My shop is QuirkyDolls

  • What types of products do you sell?
I design & sell whimsical little 12 inch rag dolls with a "theme," such as Christmas, Hannukah, Hippys or "Scrappy Girls." I also sell easy glue gun craft kits to make dolls. The styles are: surfers, sweethearts, glamour girls, Hannukah Honey and Christmas Carol. Most recently I added kits to make outfits for American Girl. Very simple glue gun crafts for girls 8 to 88!

  • What is your favorite item in your shop today?
My favorite item in my shop is my Hippy Girl. She reminds me of my college days of care free hanging out with friends and "boyfriends", concerts, picnics, camping and hiking and "The Beach"

  • How did you find out about Etsy? Where you a buyer before a seller?
I first heard about Etsy on Craftster .
Great site to share ideas and enter contests, however no selling or marketing allowed, just comradarie!

  • Are there additional venues where you sell your work?
I only sell on etsy or to friends. I'm new at this venue. For the last eight years I taught girl scout programs and doll design parties. I really enjoyed the kids but my back got tired of dragging around all the tables and supplies.

  • Are you involved with any of the Etsy teams?
After checking out many teams, I have found the following four to be the friendliest, great fun and I'm learning TONS: I am active in FEST (Florida Etsy Street Team), Etsybloggers, CafeMoms, and WWWG (Wild, Wise, Witty Grandmamas).

I gave up facebook, My Space, StumbleUpon and several other "general" outside networking sites. This provided me with plenty of time to focus on the etsy community which are WAY nicer people:D I really just want to meet people who embrace the "handmade" spirit and philosophy.
  • Everyone knows images are important when selling on the internet. What's your procedure for taking photos of your products? Do you have any tips on taking better photographs?
I got a low cost tip from a producer on youtube about lighting for photos and video. I bought two $15 workshop lights at Home Depot and one lamp gives plenty of light for inside shots.

  • Are selling your products a full-time job, or do you have an additional occupation, outside the home?
I am a full time Pediatric RN with a craft hobby biz. Wish the crafts were full time and the nursing was part time. Maybe someday..............
  • Over the years, what materials and mediums have you worked with? What's your favorite?
My Mother taught me how to sew when I was ten years old and I loved it! I made my clothes and my majorette costumes all through high school! The old pictures document my learning curve which is kind of like a "roller coaster". I once made a gold vest and matching mini skirt to wear on a "Saturday Hop" TV show. I was "Neat-O-Cool"!

I really love costumes and unusual projects. Recently I made a prop for my daughters marching band show "Follow The Yellow Brick Road". I made a 5 foot long, 4 foot high pair of black and white wicked witch legs and ruby slippers. Chicken wire, foam swim noodles, a laundry basket , cotton batting , yards of fabric and glue, glue and more glue. They were a "HOOT"! When the show ended we all took turns sneaking them in everyone's yard at night as a "morning surprise" for the recipient. They entertained a lot of people before they finally just wore out.

I really got into embroidery in college. I made and adorned peasant blouses and jean purses. I dabbled in leather craft and several years of macramé. When I had kids and a home I returned to sewing home decor, clothing, toys, dolls, and costumes for holidays and just plain FUN!

  • We are all looking for good marketing advice. What's the best tip or trick you can share with us?
My best business advice is to have a blog, post lots of pictures of your craft, family, pets, self, humorous things etc. Make it personal and fun and enticing, not just posts of your products. Personality builds a following.

  • Do you have an online photo storage site, where we can see more about you and your surroundings?
Quirky Dolls has a youtube channel (look for candee lady) with craft videos that are fantastic and very helpful

[You’ve got to watch this video - I think is really shows Terry’s personality! I also found her Flickr account ]

  • Where can people find out more about you - do you have a blog, website, instant messaging account?
I have a blog which I really enjoy, especially sharing links, photos and getting to know other bloggers. A blog is a fantasic marketing tool and just absolutely a great way to express yourself, work out stress and recieve kudos, advice and jokes from others. It's Free Psychotherapy, and who can't use that!

My turn:
  • What's the storybeader's favorite piece?
My favorite of Quirky Dolls was her “Psycho Doll” video. And I really like the Hippy Girl, too. But if I have to pick one other, I’d say the Surfer Sandy, who’s a kit.


BeadedTail said...

What a great interview! I enjoyed it very much!

Rose Works Jewelry said...

I love this shop!

QuirkyDolls said...

Thanks so much for the recognition on your blog! Do you think I should offer the "Bi-Polar Betsy" Doll? I've seen some very unusual items sell on etsy!

PurrPrints said...

QuirkyDolls stuff is so fun!

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