How did you originally get into making jewelry?
I started making jewelry at a really young age. I think I was around seven — maybe earlier, if you count macaroni necklaces. I found a bead store not too far from my house named Rix Pix, and that was it for me. I was hooked.
Tell us about your previous working situation and how you discovered Etsy.
As long as I can remember, I have always worked in retail or food service. Neither were really fulfilling; most days I couldn’t wait till my shift was over so that I could go home and work on something creative. Around the time I found out I was expecting my first baby, a friend introduced me to Etsy. I was instantly hooked on the idea that I could make a living doing what I loved most while staying home with my newborn. It seemed too good to be true. I knew that it would be a lot of work to get started, but I was up for the challenge.
How did you prepare for the transition into full-time Etsy selling?
I prayed. You might think that sounds crazy, but that’s really what I did. My husband took on more work so that I could stop working and put my focus into launching Seven Ply. My husband and I spent many late nights designing my logo, business cards, Etsy banners and the overall look of my shop. It was important to me that once Seven Ply was up and running, it had a clear brand and image.
What are your best marketing tips?
- Facebook and Twitter have been a great way for me to spread the word about Seven Ply.
- Since I lack the funds to advertise, I focus on great customer service and presentation.
- I believe that if each customer has a great online buying experience, they will tell their friends (and maybe even come back to shop again).
Tell us: Who in the family is the skateboarder?
My husband is the skateboarder. It’s the reason I married him. Well, and the fact that he’s pretty cute.
What’s been your most popular item or line to date?
My custom Bling Bling Ring has been my top seller this year. It’s been featured in numerous magazines, on fashion sites and has become a customer favorite. I even had the pleasure to make a set of custom wedding bands last spring.
Have you ever come across a skateboard you didn’t have the heart to repurpose?
Yes! I have a skateboard that hangs on my bedroom wall. That deck sums up my two favorite things: broken skateboards and Boston terriers. It has been completely split in half, but my dog’s face is still intact. However, we recently added a pug to the family, so I will have to keep my eyes peeled for a broken deck adorned with a pug face.
Why is recycling important to you and your business?
Recycling is extremely important to me because of my son. He deserves to have a healthy Earth to enjoy. It became my responsibility to do my part and teach him so that he can, when he is old enough, do his part too. Recycling is also important to me because without it I wouldn’t have a business. Skateboards are thrown away on a daily basis. If I can rescue some decks from making their way to the dump, then it’s a great day in my book.
What is the biggest challenge you face during your daily schedule?
Having a rambunctious three-year-old and trying to run a business makes my daily schedule a bit hectic. From making breakfast to packing orders and building the most insane Lego tower, traveling to the post and then home for a nap — each day has its own challenges.
What do you enjoy most about not having a day job?
I love waking up, snuggling with my son and not having to worry about punching in on time. However, I sometimes miss the social aspect that a workplace has to offer. At this point, the hardest part has been keeping up with the growth of Seven Ply. I can only do so much in a day, and I sometimes wish there were more hours to create.
Going back in time, what advice would you give yourself knowing what you know now?
I would tell myself to be more confident with my designs. When I first started out, I doubted myself. My husband always pushed me to continue. Patience and perseverance are key to success in this business.
Is there anything else you would like to share?
I am forever grateful for Etsy and the opportunity that it has allowed me. Don’t be afraid to take that leap! I will also be launching my Seven Ply website any day now. I am really excited at how it’s coming together — stay tuned!
Thanks for sharing your story, Lynn. Check out her work in the Seller’s Items below.
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