Shop Etsy

Quit Your Day Job: rikrak

Apr 27, 2009

by Mary Andrews

Etsy.com handmade and vintage goods

Kristal’s business rikrak was born when she found out she was pregnant with her son. As her passion for making quilted baby play mats grew, her quilts began catching the eye of local boutiques and Etsians. Since joining Etsy, Kristal has made well over 1,500 sales, has sold through 90 boutiques around the world (after finding her shop through Etsy), and has been featured in five major print publications.  Her success on Etsy has enabled her to stay at home with her son instead of going back to her previous teaching job.  She hasn’t looked back since!

How did you originally get into the business of making things?

I was very fortunate to grow up in a home that fostered hand-spun creativity. My brother and I were always concocting and making, and our wonderful parents encouraged us to create grand artistic messes!  Over the years, I also had the great delight of spending extra-special time with my amazing grandmother – a master quilter – whose talents I had admired ever since I was little enough to play in her sewing and notions baskets (brimming over with colourful rickrack), and whose great fascination with repurposing I’d always shared. When I was pregnant with our little sweetie a few years back, my grandmother taught me to sew and quilt. I just loved it! When she sadly passed away shortly after his birth, I inherited her collection of beautiful vintage fabrics. Soon, our shelves were overflowing with lovely retro prints and my new works in progress (my poor hubby).  So, there’s a bit of that personal history in all the work I make for rikrak now.

With that as a foundation, my little business came together in early 2007.  Shortly after I started making quilted playmats and gifts for all of our baby friends, my family and friends started encouraging me to sell them! I was hesitant, but I also realized how fabulous it would be to handmake things to supplement our income, while also fulfilling our dream to have stay-@-home parenting for our little sweetie.  So I got to work designing, creating and repurposing my fabrics into fun and functional patchwork goodies. Eventually, I garnered the courage to list some items on Etsy, and around that same time, a shop here in Ottawa kindly took my work into their brick and mortar store! And the rest, as they say, is history!

When you first started selling on Etsy, did you have dreams or goals of eventually quitting your day job?

In another lifetime, before our little sweetie was born, I was an elementary school teacher. While I loved teaching curious little kiddies, I knew there wasn’t the flexibility of being able to stay at home with our son in that career. So, most of all, becoming a full time crafter was born out of brainstorming fun ideas to envision a workable career move. To be honest, becoming a full time handcrafter was a wonderful surprise! When rikrak was just starting out, I would play all day with our son, then work away like crazy at night once he was asleep. It was an ideal fit for our family situation, despite the long nights!

I first came to Etsy (which I discovered after joining the wonderful world of flickr in 2007) because I heard it would be a great way to build my little business. After getting up the courage to list something (two months after I first joined!) I realized that, through Etsy, I could build my business bigger than I ever thought possible. Within that first year, I had over 50 shops from around the world selling rikrak goodies, and had begun to establish a great base of friendly support. This wonderful handmade community encouraged me…and soon my little sweetie was in school ½ days…and this meant a little more work time.  Soon it became my new dream to craft full time! I’ve been so fortunate…the little project just grew and grew. Soon I was creating, designing, making whenever I had a minute, and loving it!  Isn’t it funny how things in life just open themselves up like that?

Did you do anything to prepare ahead of time?

I have to be honest. The way I prepared for a bigger business was the way I prepared for my little business. My parents would call it trying to be resourceful and thrifty! They always taught me to solve any problem with creative brainstorming, using what you’ve got on hand, and working to your strengths, rather than being something you’re not.

Still, starting a new business can be daunting. When I started out, we didn’t have any extra cash to invest in a lot of business overhead, or bulk materials, or other start-up expenses. So instead, I tried to get creative, and decided to take care of as many parts of the business myself as I could (to save on outsourcing).

This was DIY-ing, indeed, as it meant that I designed and printed my own labels, cards and business paper goods. I also only bought as many supplies as I could afford (and then more as needed), I kept my inventory small and made orders for shops as they came in (so the more orders I had, the more supplies I could buy). While this isn’t always ideal, for me it was the only way to make it work. I couldn’t invest in a great leap at the start. So I took small steps, building as I could.

This was my business strategy and safety net, and it still is; I still do all these small tasks myself, and it continues to make my work sustainable, especially as the market or sales fluctuate.  In slower periods, I have the chance to create new goodies and I’m not stuck with a grand amount of materials. In super-busy seasons, I supply myself accordingly.

What are the most effective ways you have promoted and marketed your Etsy business? What’s your best marketing tip?

Here are a few things that I’ve found most effective that I’d be happy to share!

    • Be kind, friendly and positive. This is how I try to live and work. I know that’s not always so easy to do, but I really think that relaying a genuine kindness to your customers through your work can go a long way. One of my greatest hopes is that I’m building a kind, eco-forward, sustainable business.

 

    • Make great, quality, eco-friendly products that you love and are proud of.

 

    • Having a loving, supportive family that spreads the handmade word. (I’m so lucky!)

 

    • Figure out your strengths and work to them. We live in a great little place in the heart of our beautiful city and we don’t have much extra room for a full-time at-home business. So, our dining room does double-duty as family table by day, craft studio by night. Spending money on advertising was an expense my little business couldn’t afford at the start, so instead, I focus on my adoration of photography, and spend a lot of time taking the best pictures I can. I use an inexpensive point and shoot camera, and only natural window-light in all of my photos (even though waiting for a sunny day can sometimes require patience, especially during those long winter months in Ottawa!). I think the time investment of making great pictures has really been a good one!

 

  • Finally, I have to say that the best marketing I’ve done is creating listings on Etsy and being part of this great handmade community. I’ve been so fortunate, I’ve never paid for an ad for rikrak, but I’ve invested money in listing whenever I can on Etsy. For me, that’s been a great strategy with great returns.


What have you found to be an unsuccessful promotion?

When I was first starting out, I promoted some high-end products, trying to present the most complex crafts I could conceive. These were fun yet time-consuming, and would take me weeks to complete. But, I never felt comfortable charging for the immense amount of time these projects took, and sometimes even lost money on them!  I’ve since dropped many of these items from my regular lines, and streamlined my projects so that market pricing has played a role in what I sell.  Most of those extra special items are reserved, now, for loved ones.

Walk us through your typical workday.

Gosh, it’s a fun one!

    • 6:30 am: We wake up with little rikrak

 

    • 6:30 – 8: 30 am: Lego-building projects, arts and crafting for fun, a yummy breakfast, coffee-ing begins.

 

    • 8:30 ish – Mr. Rikrak goes off to work and the mommying morning starts! Most days, little rikrak  and I take a walk, play at the park, work on some fun little projects we’re doing, have 80s dance parties in the living room, or mess up the kitchen, etc. I take a few little breaks here and there to check rikrak messages, sales, do a listing, etc, planning what to do once work time starts. My previously written blog post goes up!

 

    • If it’s a beautiful morning, I encourage little rikrak to help me take my natural-light product photos beside our dining room window (he’s a great little photographer!) and if little rikrak has a fun extra-curricular activity that morning,  then it’s onto Morning Plan B: work, work, work!

 

    • 1:00 pm: After lunch, drop little rikrak off at school for a few hours and race home to start rikraking! Respond to orders, queries, etc. pack up new orders, do some cutting, sewing, and ironing.

 

    • Run to the post office. Reward myself by dropping into the forums or hopping on twitter for mini-breaks. More coffee!

 

    • 3:30 pm: Pick up little rikrak! Or Plan B: have Mr. Rikrak pick up little rikrak

 

    • Around 5:30 pm: Dinnertime for the family rikrak. Family visiting. Then, a fun board game or two. Funny tales from the day, bathtime, and story time.

 

    • 7:30 pm: Cute little rikrak goes to bed and the rikrak night shift begins! These days, this is when the real bulk of work time happens for me. More cutting and sewing. List more goodies, design new works, pack up orders, prepare the next day’s blog post, etc. Mr. Rikrak is a fun doctoral student and instructor, so sometimes (when he’s not working on his thesis) he’ll be so cute and will read a novel for the class he’s teaching out loud while I sew! I love it.

 

  • Around 11:30 pm: Try to stop sewing. Go to bed, cuddle and dream of new designs!

What do you enjoy most about not having a day job? Is there anything you miss?

Oh gosh, I just love so many things about this job! I mostly love the joy of being able to choose my own adventure. I love being able to design and craft to make a living! I can’t think of a better job. Rikraking + mommying = wonderful.  What I miss? Like so many folks, I find there’s no “off button” in having my own business.  I often feel like I’m always on, creating new goodies, filling orders, responding to queries, and my head is constantly filled with new designs. I’ll keep working at that one!

If you could go back in time, what advice would you give yourself? What advice would you give someone else?

This might sound like a cliché, but I think anything’s possible if you put your mind to it! Believe in yourself. It makes things much easier!


What goals do you wish to accomplish in the coming year for your Etsy business?

I’m so excited about the new things afoot at rikrak!

    • Finish structuring a book project that I’m working on with my designs and patterns.

 

    • Continuing to build my little business in new ways.

 

    • Growing my new little blog.

 

    • Continuing to make fun new designs and eco-friendlly products… stay tuned!

 

Is there anything else you’d like to share?

I’d just like to say… I owe such a huge thank you to Etsy and the Etsy community! Two years ago, I would never have guessed that this career would have even been possible. For me, Etsy has been the single best way to build my handmaking business. Its global exposure is just phenomenal! Through Etsy, I’ve now sold thousands of items, had over 90 shops from around the world find me and sell my goodies, had five major print magazines discover my work and feature it, and had the immense fortune to meet many like-minded, handmaking superstars who have become dear “colleagues” in the virtual work-world! Through Etsy’s various Teams (I’m so proud to be part of the TransCanada Etsy Team, Team EcoEtsy, the Trashion Team, and EtsyMom) I’ve met so many kindred folk! Thank you so much, Etsy, for making this wonderful community possible and for launching many a handmaking career. Cheers to you!

Keep up with Kristal on the web:

Her blog: http://www.rikrakstudio.blogspot.com
Her flickr: http://www.flickr.com/photos/rikrak

Her twitter: http://twitter.com/therikrakshop

Or see her Tuesday, April 28th at 4pm EDT in Etsy’s Virtual Labs for a live Quit Your Day Job chat!

You can find some of our previous Quit Your Day Job posts here!  Take a look at some of Kristal’s gorgeous bags below.

204 comments

  • LaveMeSoapCo

    LaveMeSoapCo said 7 years ago

    fun is right!

  • HazelHoney

    HazelHoney said 7 years ago

    rikrak has such beautiful and colorful items!!

  • julieincharge Admin

    julieincharge said 7 years ago

    I heart rikrak! Way to go!

  • baublegarden

    baublegarden said 7 years ago

    Thanks for the inspiration. What beautiful, colorful products.

  • THIMBLEandACORN

    THIMBLEandACORN said 7 years ago

    I love the clean bright colors of her work, it seems to correspond with her personality!

  • OffTheHooks

    OffTheHooks said 7 years ago

    congratulations rikrak- so happy to have met you via the TransCanada Etsy team- you are an inspiration to us all. Thanks for letting us have a peek into the wonderful world of rikrak!!!

  • pinpinn

    pinpinn said 7 years ago

    WOOO! RIKRAK! Love your stuff ^_^ Nice to see an article on you!

  • kennafoster

    kennafoster said 7 years ago

    Thank you! This interview is an inspiration to those of us pursuing our passions, without a huge start-up budget. I could especially relate to the DIY tasks and the dual-purpose dining table/craft table-- an corner of my living room is, as I type, serving as a photography matting studio!

  • elizandaxel

    elizandaxel said 7 years ago

    What a fantastic etsian! I love all those bright colors! :)

  • buttercupbloom

    buttercupbloom said 7 years ago

    Way to go KristalRikRakNiceyMomma!! xoxoxo

  • EarmarkGatherings

    EarmarkGatherings said 7 years ago

    i do love rikrak! great article!

  • sweetsmilesbaby

    sweetsmilesbaby said 7 years ago

    Great inspiration! I love it, another coffee-drinking all-night sewing mommy!

  • 4TheSparrowsNest

    4TheSparrowsNest said 7 years ago

    Congrats Kristal! You're definitely a super-star around here! :o)

  • chakrapennywhistle

    chakrapennywhistle said 7 years ago

    I love rikrak too :) I am the proud owner of a few of her goods and must say that they are wonderful! She is one of the nicest folks that I have met on Etsy. She brightens many of my days! She is just as bright as her shop!

  • Crafterall

    Crafterall said 7 years ago

    I believe that Kristal is one of the most genuinely nice people I've met through Etsy. Her shop is adorable - her work is quality, and her spirit is strong. Congrats and thanks for being an inspiration to me!

  • ptitebaloue

    ptitebaloue said 7 years ago

    How inspiring!! :) and it's great to see I'm not the only canadian struggling to take pictures in natural light during winter ;)

  • Huismus

    Huismus said 7 years ago

    So good to see you here nicey!! :-))) Congrats!! xo

  • pokeypeppers

    pokeypeppers said 7 years ago

    This is an incredibly inspiring article! Thank you etsy!

  • MetroGypsy

    MetroGypsy said 7 years ago

    Fantastic story! :)

  • odiliafu

    odiliafu said 7 years ago

    Congrats!! I like the color and style of your work.

  • lumafina

    lumafina said 7 years ago

    Beautiful! Very fun and bright things, this makes me excited for summer. Thanks for the support for us new-etsy-ers!

  • inajuicebox

    inajuicebox said 7 years ago

    Great article!

  • adoreneko

    adoreneko said 7 years ago

    A truly inspirational article, again. Thanks!

  • luckytroll

    luckytroll said 7 years ago

    very nice quilted things, and a great personality to go with!

  • minouette

    minouette said 7 years ago

    Not only does she have a great eye for design & photography, she is the sort of encouraging, enthusiastic, fun person you want on your team, and we're lucky to have her on the TransCanada Etsy Team. :) Congratulations rikrak! p.s. also struggling to get sunlight for photos in the winter.

  • michelemaule

    michelemaule said 7 years ago

    Yay rikrak!! I love her items, her shop, and her personality!! Such a great Etsy seller, and a truly wonderful lady! :D

  • PipocaHandmade

    PipocaHandmade said 7 years ago

    Congratulations rikrak! Wonderful article! Love your shop!

  • StrandRedesign

    StrandRedesign said 7 years ago

    Lovely and inspiring article! I'm such a fan of rikrak!

  • uncorked

    uncorked said 7 years ago

    love, love, love Kristal's shop! wonderful getting to know her better!

  • HookableDesigns

    HookableDesigns said 7 years ago

    This has been my favorite "Quit your day job" article yet. I love know how other stay at home moms work their business and raise kiddies at the same time.

  • copabananas

    copabananas said 7 years ago

    Great article!

  • PrairiePeasant

    PrairiePeasant said 7 years ago

    Wonderful! Rikrak is so inspiring for us all. I've been fortunate to work with her on the TransCanada Team. Way to go rikrak!!

  • topsyturvydesign

    topsyturvydesign said 7 years ago

    Kristal - You & your creations are dee-lightful! A big congrats on the success of your biz!

  • JessicaPoundstone

    JessicaPoundstone said 7 years ago

    Fantastic story - and such a great shop! Nice work, and looking forward to seeing how the business grows...

  • atouchofvintage

    atouchofvintage said 7 years ago

    congrats! and beautiful work!

  • HarrietsHaven

    HarrietsHaven said 7 years ago

    Way to go rikrak!!! This is a very inspiring interview...I find it difficult to make time for crafting with a 3 year old and a newborn. I need to arrange my time a little better the way Kristal has. I enjoyed reading about your daily schedule and hope that maybe things can fall into place for me soon too. Congratulations!!!

  • mdstudio

    mdstudio said 7 years ago

    I love these articles! They are always so encouraging and inspiring! :)

  • zombuki

    zombuki said 7 years ago

    Don't try to be something you're not - such good advise! I think sometimes we see things and wonder "can I make that?" instead of "is that ME?" :D

  • WanderlustBling

    WanderlustBling said 7 years ago

    Beautiful colors and a great interview!

  • KnitStorm

    KnitStorm said 7 years ago

    yay for rikrak!

  • Minnie829

    Minnie829 said 7 years ago

    Very inspiring, I enjoy reading article.

  • EpicBones

    EpicBones said 7 years ago

    congrats Kristal! what a perfect excuse to quit your day job!!! love your work :)

  • neawear

    neawear said 7 years ago

    WOOHOO Rikrak!!!! Congrats dear and all the best to you!! :)

  • sherrytruitt

    sherrytruitt said 7 years ago

    Here's wishing you, little rikrak and Mr. rikrak continued success!

  • organicquiltcompany

    organicquiltcompany said 7 years ago

    Congratulations rikrak -- and thanks for sharing such great advice!

  • metalicious

    metalicious said 7 years ago

    What a sweet story, and so inspirational! Congrats, now I'm off to check out your shop!

  • GarbageofEdenDesign

    GarbageofEdenDesign said 7 years ago

    Yay rikrak! : D

  • leafprintstudio

    leafprintstudio said 7 years ago

    Great stuff! You've been busy!

  • laurabucci

    laurabucci said 7 years ago

    congrats rikrak! you have so much energy!

  • 2ReVert

    2ReVert said 7 years ago

    Yay K.!!! So happy for you, and you are so right... you are super duper kind and we just want to tell you how great you are and wish you much more success! Thanks Mary for another amazing read! jann & jeff

  • misscourageous

    misscourageous said 7 years ago

    rikrak rocks!

  • kathip22

    kathip22 said 7 years ago

    She is my idol! What a wonderful, positive and talented person.

  • stringmealong

    stringmealong said 7 years ago

    Congrats rikrak!!! You are an inspiration for sure.

  • emmarts

    emmarts said 7 years ago

    wonderful article, rikrak! :-)

  • ArtWhims

    ArtWhims said 7 years ago

    Awe this is such a wonderful article! I love the energy in it!

  • toocutetohandle

    toocutetohandle said 7 years ago

    another exciting story to help me get my shop looking better!! there's not enough time in the day!

  • Chickibeads

    Chickibeads said 7 years ago

    Well deserved! Congratulations!

  • SimpleTraditions

    SimpleTraditions said 7 years ago

    I love stories where moms can stay home with their babies!!!

  • sarahfburns

    sarahfburns said 7 years ago

    Inspiring - and kudo's to you for being so diligent, you must love what you do!

  • FlanneryCrane

    FlanneryCrane said 7 years ago

    Excellent story-I enjoyed reading. Best of wishes to you

  • girlscantell

    girlscantell said 7 years ago

    rikrak has been one of my favorites for ages! yay! i love getting this little peek into your world! so awesome.

  • humblebea

    humblebea said 7 years ago

    Thank you for sharing your story! I love your shop! (-:

  • SeaFindDesigns

    SeaFindDesigns said 7 years ago

    Way to go RikRak! Great story!

  • EJPcreations

    EJPcreations said 7 years ago

    What a wonderful story!!! Thank you for sharing!

  • SleepDreamPlay

    SleepDreamPlay said 7 years ago

    I discovered RikRak only the other day! Superb seller.

  • annarubyking

    annarubyking said 7 years ago

    Congrats to Rikrak! Well deserved success for the nicest of people! thanks for sharing!

  • twomonkeysdesigns

    twomonkeysdesigns said 7 years ago

    A great inspiration and great advice. Goodluck to you, your family and your company.

  • fisheye

    fisheye said 7 years ago

    Ms ricrac is such a nicey! Congrats!

  • littletreeart

    littletreeart said 7 years ago

    One of my favourites too. Hope to get something someday. So pretty.

  • missindie

    missindie said 7 years ago

    rikrak!! :] I love your shop, congrats on quitting the j-o-b. Good luck to you and your business!

  • SewnNatural

    SewnNatural said 7 years ago

    wow! congratulations. as a fellow ottawa seller, i am so thrilled to see how your business has grown, and how your creativity and great business sense has grown alongside your family life... what an inspiration!

  • dragonhouseofyuen

    dragonhouseofyuen said 7 years ago

    Congratulations Kristal on your success and continuing success!! I like your advice - anything's possible and believe in yourself! thank you

  • norakaren

    norakaren said 7 years ago

    it is so nice and inspirng seing someone fullfilling everyone's dream...congats Kristal!

  • paisleybaby

    paisleybaby said 7 years ago

    I am proud to know you Kristal - congratulations on all your success!

  • BululuStudio

    BululuStudio said 7 years ago

    One of my favorites too...

  • jodieflowers

    jodieflowers said 7 years ago

    Awesome!

  • CutieDynamite

    CutieDynamite said 7 years ago

    Love it!

  • masalachai

    masalachai said 7 years ago

    So pleased to read this, RikRak was one of my first inspirations on here - I love the very eco-friendly, sustainable focus... congratulations!

  • katedesigns

    katedesigns said 7 years ago

    Keep up the great work! Love it!

  • kimquinndotcom

    kimquinndotcom said 7 years ago

    Yay rikrak!!! I have always loved your items!!

  • zeropumpkin

    zeropumpkin said 7 years ago

    wow.cool shop. :)

  • PrettySeri

    PrettySeri said 7 years ago

    I remember seeing you when you were a featured seller, I am very happy for your success. You are a wonderful inspiration!

  • VintageJamie

    VintageJamie said 7 years ago

    So beautiful!

  • elisasherejewelry

    elisasherejewelry said 7 years ago

    I love rikrak, she made our very first stockings! They are so precious, thank you so much for making the wonderful work that you do nd for sharing your story.

  • MayaBella

    MayaBella said 7 years ago

    Yay! I love Rikrak. I have that little vintage fabric pouch. Great to get to know you a little!

  • thelittlereddoor

    thelittlereddoor said 7 years ago

    rikrak is an absolute joy and one of the nicest people I've had the good fortune to meet through Etsy :) congratulations!

  • OliveSomeday

    OliveSomeday said 7 years ago

    Oh I have always liked her product photography!

  • bellasparty

    bellasparty said 7 years ago

    I love your work!

  • sharlzndollz

    sharlzndollz said 7 years ago

    What a great balancing act. Thanks for inspiring.

  • SewWrapIt

    SewWrapIt said 7 years ago

    I love your shop. It was the very first favorite/heart I marked when I joined Etsy!

  • baconsquarefarm

    baconsquarefarm said 7 years ago

    What a wonderful story and shop as well, congrats on your success being able to stay home and do what you love create. You are a inspiration to everyone~! Wish you continued success in whatever path you follow in the future.

  • TreeHuggerStudio

    TreeHuggerStudio said 7 years ago

    Great story,congrats to you,inspiring!

  • brynnalex

    brynnalex said 7 years ago

    Wow, great to see you here! Wishing you tons more success and happiness! - Elaine

  • instantcrimson

    instantcrimson said 7 years ago

    Thanks so much for sharing this :D

  • simpledream2

    simpledream2 said 7 years ago

    Kristal, I have been following and admiring your shop for a long time. What an inspiring story. Thanks, Lisa

  • MyWisteriaCottage

    MyWisteriaCottage said 7 years ago

    Every mothers dream! Good for you. It does take a full time at home parent to raise a great child and most of us do not figure out how to do it until kids are grown. Thank you for doing it, and maybe showing the way to others.

  • haveitconfections

    haveitconfections said 7 years ago

    I absolutely adore rikrak's shop. It always brightens my day.

  • CopperCubes

    CopperCubes said 7 years ago

    Good for you RikRac!

  • prettycreature

    prettycreature said 7 years ago

    What an inspiration you are, Rikrak! The cutest name too. Love your beautiful colors and designs. How do you have the energy? Anyhoo, keep it up.

  • thecottagecupboard

    thecottagecupboard said 7 years ago

    Kristal...congratulations on all your accomplishments you are an inspiration/Your energy , clear focus of what you want and willing to work for are all in direct relation to your unbeleivable unselfish outgoing and positive attitude!And all this with a little one , absolutely amazing,,, continued good luck to you ,kathy

  • IlluminatedPerfume

    IlluminatedPerfume said 7 years ago

    Very inspirational, thank you!

  • Berlinski

    Berlinski said 7 years ago

    Gorgeous colours and great photos!! I just love them!! Congratulations!!

  • sandali

    sandali said 7 years ago

    RikRak you rock -- the power of creation priceless !! Congrats on your success story -- you have an amazingly rich & colorful collection of items --- LOVE them all !!

  • ilovehearts

    ilovehearts said 7 years ago

    I love rikrak! So bright, fun and colourful!

  • artwithallie

    artwithallie said 7 years ago

    Kristal, I love that you get to do what you love whilst being there full time with your little rikrak AND they're paying you to do it! Well worth it I think!!

  • SevenzJewelry

    SevenzJewelry said 7 years ago

    I cant wait for the day that this is me. I am so ready to meet the world with arms wide open and take everything it has to offer. Im so excited about my designs and my ideas, its always growing and expanding and now that a few people actually know who I am and like my stuff I feel more motivated than ever. Great article and keep up the awesome work with your line and your family.

  • silentdisco

    silentdisco said 7 years ago

    Good article! Thanks for inspiration.

  • NickyBeeShop

    NickyBeeShop said 7 years ago

    Your shop and your story are both so inspiring ! Congrats on your success and thanks for sharing :-)

  • EtsyTrashion

    EtsyTrashion said 7 years ago

    We♥rikrak!

  • FoxandtheOwl

    FoxandtheOwl said 7 years ago

    Inspirational Rikrak! I have only just started but I'm aiming for your success!

  • MouseTrapVintage

    MouseTrapVintage said 7 years ago

    Rikrak, I have admired your work for a long time! Your store is one of the first I found on Etsy. I appreciate your designs - so clean and simple and functional! Congrats!

  • MyPatternedMind

    MyPatternedMind said 7 years ago

    That's awesome!!! Cute products by the way!

  • lovelygifts

    lovelygifts said 7 years ago

    Great inspirational article, and very nice products!

  • DalkullanJewelry

    DalkullanJewelry said 7 years ago

    Great article. Congratulations on your success RikRak!

  • allthingswhite

    allthingswhite said 7 years ago

    I love this series, it is always so inspirational!!! Best to you on your etsy sucess!

  • lilynymph

    lilynymph said 7 years ago

    go Rikrak! go Ottawa! I know what you mean by those dull winter days! You seem to make the best of it though! Rock on.

  • Papatya

    Papatya said 7 years ago

    Thank you so much for your encouraging words!

  • nancywallisdesigns

    nancywallisdesigns said 7 years ago

    Congratulations rikrak! You are an inspiration!

  • cthings

    cthings said 7 years ago

    Congratulations Rikrak! Very beautiful items and many more successful adventures even with the family!

  • Ecstatic

    Ecstatic said 7 years ago

    Great colours! Inspiring article!

  • vella

    vella said 7 years ago

    Thank you, Rikrak! It is great to hear about how you juggle being a stay@home mom and a crafter. (I am still looking for that off button!)

  • blinkonmynose

    blinkonmynose said 7 years ago

    Congrats to the Rikrak family! Very nice article. Thank you for sharing a glimpse of your life with us.

  • StudioCherie

    StudioCherie said 7 years ago

    Great article and how neat that there are so many comments here about what a wonderful person Kristal is. Etsy is a great community.

  • bobnstitch

    bobnstitch said 7 years ago

    I love your photos! They are worth the wait!

  • worksandfinds

    worksandfinds said 7 years ago

    Congratulations. Once again fantastic article. I love them.

  • littlepinkpebble

    littlepinkpebble said 7 years ago

    great story~!!

  • sweetbeets

    sweetbeets said 7 years ago

    Congratulations Kristal!! Your story is very inspirational.

  • aislinnoccasions

    aislinnoccasions said 7 years ago

    Congrats! I loved reading the article!

  • HandKnitHugs

    HandKnitHugs said 7 years ago

    Congratulations, I'm a big fan! Very inspiring article. All the Best!

  • Waterrose

    Waterrose said 7 years ago

    What cute designs and inspiring story!

  • maidenlove

    maidenlove said 7 years ago

    Congrats! Well deserved -- Rikrak rocks. Go Team EcoEtsy! <3 Maya

  • tanisalexis

    tanisalexis said 7 years ago

    CONGRATS Kristal! we love you!!! I am honoured to call you friend. XOXO!

  • DuckweedDesigns

    DuckweedDesigns said 7 years ago

    You have really neat things! Love the colors too. How fun is that!!

  • stormysky

    stormysky said 7 years ago

    Wow! Totally inspirational, thank you so much for a wonderful interview.

  • savistudio

    savistudio said 7 years ago

    Very Colorful and inspiring!!

  • reiter8

    reiter8 said 7 years ago

    So fun to hear about her business and life after 'knowing' her as an ecoetsy team member for so long. Congrats Rikrak!

  • kittybblove

    kittybblove said 7 years ago

    I love this story!

  • nanouke

    nanouke said 7 years ago

    One of my favorite esty shops, so good to learn more! You go girl!

  • ScottieinaCanoe

    ScottieinaCanoe said 7 years ago

    What a lovely seller and her products are fantastic :)

  • ReFabulous

    ReFabulous said 7 years ago

    Congrats, rikrak! I've been a fan for a long time... you're an inspiration! :)

  • SundraSandrusi

    SundraSandrusi said 7 years ago

    beautiful work!!!! LOVE LOVE LOVE IT

  • lucywallis

    lucywallis said 7 years ago

    Great story and lovely work - thank you. Lucy x

  • ChelseaVanTol

    ChelseaVanTol said 7 years ago

    Oh i LOVE her! :)

  • novadesigns

    novadesigns said 7 years ago

    congrats! Very inspiring :o)

  • munieca

    munieca said 7 years ago

    I love Kristal!! she is great!!! Congrats K!!!

  • minniesheart

    minniesheart said 7 years ago

    Such an inspiration! Way to go!

  • catsongstitchery

    catsongstitchery said 7 years ago

    Beautiful work and inspiring too!

  • Vanessa Admin

    Vanessa said 7 years ago

    Thanks for doing the followup chat in the VL, rikrak!

  • artisticallystitched

    artisticallystitched said 7 years ago

    Great story!! thanks for being inspiring to the rest of us :c) I *heart* etsy!!

  • SerendipityFiberArts

    SerendipityFiberArts said 7 years ago

    What an inspiring story! Congrats on building the life you want for yourself and your family! :-)

  • risabeads

    risabeads said 7 years ago

    Awesome story, so inspiring! Thanks for sharing :)

  • StrungAlong

    StrungAlong said 7 years ago

    Inspiring and heartfelt!

  • paperinstyle

    paperinstyle said 7 years ago

    Such an inspiration! Thank you.

  • vivilian

    vivilian said 7 years ago

    thank you for sharing ╭╮__╭╭╭╭╭__╭╮ │           │   ╭────╮ │           │   │挖來簽到│ │ ● ╭───╮ ● │ ╭╮│哩唷!!│ │≡  │● ●│  ≡│O╰╯│ㄏ〜ㄏ〜│ │   ╰───╯   │   ╰────╯ ╰──┬○────┬─○╯

  • fromlucywithlove

    fromlucywithlove said 7 years ago

    Great inspiration and great shop! Thanks for sharing.

  • madeforfun

    madeforfun said 7 years ago

    I love your story...the Rikrak family..I can just see how those days just fill up!But it seems like you are making it work...java helps...and you are living the dream,girlie!Hats off to you...bravo!

  • wristcandycreations

    wristcandycreations said 7 years ago

    Great story! Thanks for sharing those inspiring words "Believe in yourself". Sometimes that's the hardest part! Congrats on your successes and best wishes for many more!

  • Cornerstudio

    Cornerstudio said 7 years ago

    Thank you for your inspiring words. Today has been a tough day and reading your words has really made me feel that I can fulfill my dream. Etsy is a great community and I am blessed to be a part of it.

  • boopalinabebe

    boopalinabebe said 7 years ago

    rikrak rocks! Thanks for the good read, Kristal. Can't wait to learn more about your book project.

  • englishmuffinshop

    englishmuffinshop said 7 years ago

    Congrats on all your success Kristal! I can totally relate to those long cold Canadian winters and days on end with no sun! (you seem to have good luck though, your pix always look great!)

  • LuttrellStudio

    LuttrellStudio said 7 years ago

    Congratulations, Kristal! Excellent interview! rikrak is one of the most beautiful shops on Etsy and has one of the most friendly sellers also...the perfect combination! So happy to call you a teammate!

  • budpnq

    budpnq said 7 years ago

    What a great interview! I love that your husband reads to you while you work! You seem to have a sweet family and a happy life with them. Congratulations on your success!:D

  • Navare

    Navare said 7 years ago

    Wonderful! Starting your own business really is like a choose your own adventure story!

  • blithegardens

    blithegardens said 7 years ago

    A really inspirational article. It seems like Kristal really is able to keep it all together. Good luck with your business!

  • pouch

    pouch said 7 years ago

    great products, lovely lady, fun and helpful member of the eco etsy team, congrats!!!

  • gingercardco

    gingercardco said 7 years ago

    Rikrak is one of my Top Five Most Admired in all of Etsy! LOVE everything she makes - it's all so colorful and useful! I better go put my money where my mouth is!

  • YummyNaturals

    YummyNaturals said 7 years ago

    This gives me such inspiration! The advice about taking the best photos possible is brilliant-natural light, of course! I tried to take my own project shots and night and they all came out green but a professional product photographer is so costly! Thank you so much for sharing your experience.

  • 7ravensChioke

    7ravensChioke said 7 years ago

    What an inspiring story! Thanks to Etsy for the great article, and to rikrak for setting a super example for us all! I'm grateful to have the advice about taking pics in natural light before I start taking mine. Love your work, too, rikrak!

  • ShelbyLynDesigns

    ShelbyLynDesigns said 7 years ago

    You are fabulous. Congratulations on making your dream a success. Your quilted items are beautiful!Thanks for the inspiration.

  • monkeyandsquirrel

    monkeyandsquirrel said 7 years ago

    so wonderful to see someone who's really doing it! i think this is what all us etsians are striving for. kudos to you rikrak!!!

  • kmaylward

    kmaylward said 7 years ago

    congratulations!!! You are a very lucky lady to have found the right niche and make it work!! Kudos and best wishes for your continued success!!

  • 20BucksorLess

    20BucksorLess said 7 years ago

    The playmats are one of the best baby ideas I've seen in a long time. Good for you! I'm going to tell all my friends about them. These will make appreciated gifts for young parents. One big thank you!

  • virsaq

    virsaq said 7 years ago

    very inspiring story..and lovely stuff.

  • RomanceCatsAndWhimsy

    RomanceCatsAndWhimsy said 7 years ago

    Your story was so inspiring. Thank you for sharing some of your success secrets!! Your shop is lovely -- you're so creative and your descriptions are fun to read. Thank you!

  • myJellyBean

    myJellyBean said 7 years ago

    Love your story!! Your work is beautiful and creative. I hope my shop takes off soon. You have inspired me to get working on my sewing. THANKS!!

  • 1920

    1920 said 7 years ago

    always love this kind of story. love the colors.

  • QuiltandQuest

    QuiltandQuest said 7 years ago

    Congratulations on your success! Thank you for sharing your story ~ you've inspired me to make my dreams soar!

  • MissKArt

    MissKArt said 7 years ago

    U r a true inspiration 2 me. I look 2 mimick ur success. Continue being happy doing what u luv and having fun!

  • GracieDesigns

    GracieDesigns said 7 years ago

    Rikrak, I love your shop. Your photos are amazing, and your story inspring. Keep creating beautiful things!!

  • agapeluv

    agapeluv said 7 years ago

    Thank you so much for sharing. Your crafting adventure is very inspiring to many of us. I am glad to hear more about you and even see a smiling face behind all the lovely colorful gifts!! Your work is very beautiful and full of practical items that are glowing with color!

  • lilyandlou

    lilyandlou said 7 years ago

    I love Rikrak! I have been following your shop since I first fell upon Etsy. Your shop is very inspiring to me. Thank you so much for allowing us to peek into your world for a moment. Being a stay-at-home-etsy-mom is the BEST!

  • mystique27

    mystique27 said 7 years ago

    Very inspiring! I am also from Ottawa, and plan on opening my own Etsy store shortly. Thank you for the tips. Where are your items being sold in Ottawa? I would love to go check them out. Congratulations on your success! It's great to hear such a positive success story from Ottawa!

  • lucky0girl0racer

    lucky0girl0racer said 7 years ago

    Congrats!

  • Intres

    Intres said 7 years ago

    Great story!

  • kokadots

    kokadots said 7 years ago

    Fantastic story and very inspirational. Gives me hope that my shop will grow and my dream can come true to live full time in the world of crafting and handmades! Thank you for sharing...

  • cloud9designstudio

    cloud9designstudio said 7 years ago

    great article of one of my fabulous ecoetsy teammates! :) yay! :) http://cloud9designstudio.etsy.com

  • EllieInStitches

    EllieInStitches said 7 years ago

    Thank you for your inspiration. As a newbie, I need all the help I can find. Bee good, EllieInStitches

  • brownbunnybyiris

    brownbunnybyiris said 7 years ago

    Well done, rikrak!

  • CharmingIsabella

    CharmingIsabella said 7 years ago

    I love the way you describe your day and how bright and cheery your rikrak items are. It's so refreshing to see the combination of colors. Beautiful. Laura

  • daniellebags

    daniellebags said 7 years ago

    I've always loved your creations! Now that I know you're so sweet and positive, I love them even more! Thanks for sharing!

  • ellabellamay

    ellabellamay said 7 years ago

    What an inspiration, thanks rikrak!

  • mundoflo

    mundoflo said 7 years ago

    I'm so glad to see you here, and have the opportunity to know something more about you and get inspired for your story :)

  • PaperPumpkin

    PaperPumpkin said 7 years ago

    Congratulations! Your story is so warm-hearted and fun! I love your colorful fabric goodies...

  • jenji1

    jenji1 said 7 years ago

    Rikrak was one of the first shops I purchased from back in 2006! It was the most wonderful transaction! I have been addicted to etsy and all of the wonderful people since. Keep up the awesome work Kristal, I am so happy to support a mom and business owner!

  • MarniesMenagerie

    MarniesMenagerie said 7 years ago

    That was a sweet little article, thanks for sharing. You have worked really hard and it shows. Love you shop!!! I'm hopeing and working hard to get that perfect niche. Thanks again. Marnie

  • bellavioletta

    bellavioletta said 7 years ago

    •:*¨♥¨*:•. rikrak is an inspiration .•:*¨♥¨*:•.

  • daisyndesigns

    daisyndesigns said 7 years ago

    Your work is encouraging! Thank you!

  • lapaperie

    lapaperie said 6 years ago

    Always an inspiration! Great to see you featured - well deserved! Your work is wonderful. <3

  • leelee04

    leelee04 said 6 years ago

    Great interview!!!! :) congratulations!

  • Mamadressingroom

    Mamadressingroom said 6 years ago

    useful!

  • ikabags

    ikabags said 6 years ago

    Love your staff , love your helpfull hard , love you :)) Such a great lady in the world !!! Cheers from Paris

  • FriendsLikeUs

    FriendsLikeUs said 6 years ago

    Great interview Kristal, I enjoy visiting your shop and looking at all your great stuff. I can tell you love what you do. thanks for all the great tip's. T

  • annyschoo

    annyschoo said 6 years ago

    through your blog, I came to read this story.. I have started my handmade after I became a mom too and selling on etsy after I moved to the states. It is wonderful to be there for the family and practice my creation in daily life. Thank you for sharing your story.Hi! to your lucky little one.^^

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