Friday, April 10, 2009

Etsy Artisan Interview - Unique Commodities

I was so excited when Unique Commodities agreed to do this interview. Terronda is a close friend, even though we've never met! She joined the Etsybloggers team just over a year ago and visits me often in Storyland. Actually, if you look down on the left-hand side, you can see she's one of my top commenters! One thing I learned when doing this interview, is that Terronda has another Etsy shop, full of supplies. Don't know how I missed that! But before you go and visit her shops, read this great interview:
  • What's the name of your Etsy shop?
The name of my Etsy shop is Unique Commodities

  • What types of products do you sell?
See now, that is why I love the name Unique Commodities because it allows me to vary my product line! Especially since I dabble in so much crafty stuff! But to answer the question (LOL), I currently sell hand made jewelry and tote bags!
  • What is your favorite item in your shop today?
My favorite item in my shop today is the Red Cube Multi-strand necklace! It says I am bold and beautiful! Plus my favorite color is red!
  • How did you find out about Etsy? Were you a buyer before a seller?
I found Etsy when I was searching for an item I was looking for. Someone on Etsy ended up having it. I tagged the site as a favorite and then two months later set up my shop. I would say I set up to sell but I bought a few things to get myself some feed back (smile)! Kind of a chicken or egg first answer I know! LOL!
  • Are you involved with any of the Etsy teams?
Yes I am a part of the Etsybloggers team, Etsymom team, Pluggers United Team and Etsybead team.




Shamefully, I have only been active on the Etsybloggers team! I MUST do better – that or remove myself from some of the teams!
  • Over the years, what materials and mediums have you worked with? What's your favorite?
Hmmm… I have worked with mosaic tile, photography, crocheting, knitting (it’s been a long time since I crocheted or knitted though), jewelry beading and polymer clay. My favorite would be the jewelry making! I love it when a piece comes together. I am looking forward to working with polymer clay! I truly believe that once I get the hang of that, all other jewelry making styles will be out the door!

  • Are selling your products a full-time job, or do you have an additional occupation, outside the home?
I do have a full time job and sell on a part time basis.

  • Do you have an online photo storage site, where we can see more about you and your surroundings?
Well I am registered on both Flickr and Photobucket but sadly I don’t upload my jewelry there much! Guess I better get on the ball, huh?!
  • Are there additional venues where you sell your work?
YES! I actually have another etsy shop http://infinitysupplies.etsy.com


I also sell on Crobbies and Bonanzle and am registered on Ebay but haven’t sold anything there in almost two years.
  • 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?
In all honesty, your photos make or break you! When I see photos of items online that have cluttered back grounds, colors that compete with the featured item or are too dark, I honestly keep it moving. One of my early Etsy mentors Catiesblue shared that less is more. I figured out that I loved her suggestion of using white/neutral background! I find myself drawn to those photos that are clear and simply focus on the piece! My process is to use natural light between 4 and 6 pm and what better background than nature! Be sure to get close up pictures of your item. I always love to see the clasp on a piece of jewelry!

My tip would be to tell people to do a test. Look at items on a venue and see what pictures draw you? Is it the ones with a lot of background, ones that have the background fuzzy and the focal item clear? Whatever it is that draws you, will likely draw a customer so mimic your photo shooting style accordingly!

  • We are all looking for good marketing advice. What's the best tip or trick you can share with us?
Keep the main thing – the main thing and have a plan and follow it! If your goal is to make jewelry and sell X dollar amount a month, what are you doing to make that happen? Develop a plan and IMPLEMENT that plan to help you to reach your goals. Always remember that all we can control are the income producing activities (IPA’s)! We can not force a sale! If a sale doesn’t come the first month or two or three, not to worry the law of numbers never fail. They may be slow or stagger but never do they fail. Be consistent in implementing the Income Producing activities, tweaking the plans where necessary (here is where a mentor would be great) and the SALES WILL COME!
  • Where can people find out more about you - do you have a blog, website, instant messaging account?
Well, if you want to get to know me better then check out my two blogs
www.uniquecommodities.blogspot.com

www.indiscriminatemusings.blogspot.com


OK, the storybeader's turn.

Here's my favorite piece:



I'm not sure if this necklace is still available, because I saw it on Terronda's flickr. Looks like you can wear it with either blue jeans or a nice blouse. And me, I love blue! Isn't it a great photograph?

8 comments:

Rose Works Jewelry said...

What a wonderful interview :)

MagdaleneJewels said...

Great interview with on Unique Commodities. I too am a great fan of Terronda and her work. Absolutely love the red beads (one of my favorite colors also). We all chat everyday, but it is even better when we know the whole person and how their craft evolved. Thanks!

memoriesforlifescrapbooks said...

Great interview :)
I too love that turquoise piece you chose!

PurrPrints said...

Great photo tips--thanks for sharing them!

uniquecommodities said...

Thanks for featuring me Story! You are the absolute BESTEST!

BeadedTail said...

Wonderful interview with Terronda! I enjoyed it very much!

Splendid Little Stars said...

great interview! great shop! love those turquoise earrings.

Five O'Clock Somewhere said...

Nice feature, and multi-talented! On to go check out her shop now.

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