It’s an honour to be working with Etsy ten years after I made my first purchase. Looking through my ‘favourite items’ is a bit like a visual representation of all the twentysomething phases I’ve been through.
There was the DIY octopus necklace of 2009, that kicked off my need for wearing random motifs around my neck. I also had to chuckle about my hareem pant obsession, love of ombre tights and anything brogue-y, because it helped me get my personal style to where it is today.
Having access to a community of independent sellers really upped my creativity and reminded me that I didn’t have to always stick to the typical shops. Although I still mix and match when it comes to brands, I’ve also enjoyed meeting makers at events and following their journeys over on Instagram.
Now, I’m more likely to go for prints, planters and candles since my rented room is the main way I express my personality. I love being greeted by the ‘Let’s do something wonderful today’ slogan (bought at the first #EtsyMadeLocal event) and burning my favourite Spiced Apple candle (I’m now on my third).
To celebrate this milestone (along with five years of renting and finally figuring out my interior style), I’m taking part in the #DiscoverEtsy campaign. There’s so much goodness to be found, so I want to highlight some of my favourite sellers and top tips for navigating the site.
Hopefully this will give you a headstart for any Christmas gifts or ideas if you’re still in shopping-for-yourself mode…
Items featured – Earrings and tote bag by Dorcas Creates, Print by Kaloolah Jay, Spiced Apple candle and handcream by Hopscotch, Placemats by Emily Marlin.
ETSY SELLERS YOU NEED TO FAVOURITE ASAP
Dorcas Creates – I always swing my tote bag featuring headwraps, fulani braids and 4c coils with pride. Dorcas’ illustrations celebrate the diversity of black women and adorn everything from birthday cards to brooches.
I interviewed her a couple of years ago for International Women’s Day and could really relate to upholding the default standard of beauty, before realising and seeking out work that reflected my experience. Now I can’t wait to see the effect her designs have on a new generation.
Kaloolah Jay– Kate’s prints will give you extreme wanderlust as well as inspiration for your gallery wall. She focuses on the best examples of Art Deco and Midcentury architecture, all realised in her trademark pastel colourways. Remind me to start saving for a trip to Palm Springs.
Hopscotch – Remember the heavenly scents that I mentioned earlier? Hopscotch is a small independent, lifestyle brand that has got me hooked on their hand-poured, soy candles in an array of combinations. You can also shop in comfort knowing that their beauty products are 100% natural and vegan.
Emily Marlin – Excuse me whilst I save all of Emily Marlin’s jazzy terrazzo surfaces to my ‘Future Home’ inspo list. What I love about Etsy is that you have access to large-scale bespoke products that wouldn’t look out of place in an interiors magazine, but also smaller versions that are budget friendly. The Pop placements fit into the current maximalist trend and are also an inventive way to display your jewellery.
HOW TO SHOP ETSY LIKE A PRO
Look out for the curated Editors Picks’ if you need to get inspired. The team has handily gathered sellers based on certain themes, seasons or even their annual Etsy Design Awards dedicated to the highest quality items. You can view them easily via the app or head to the blog as a starting point.
I’d also recommend following @etsyuk on Instagram (and any relevant sellers), if that’s where you’re checking more frequently. Charlotte, Alex and Medina have also taken part in the #DiscoverEtsy campaign, so head to their posts for even more ideas.
Remember to add items to your Favourites. Noticed the heart icon in the right hand corner of each product? Make sure you utilise this feature as it can be easy to forget who you’ve spotted during an intense browsing session.
You can save particular items, shops and even create themed lists to share with friends. If you’re feeling particularly sleuth-like, then head to the profiles of particular sellers and search their favourites.
The search function is also pretty decent. This really helped when I was putting my terrazzo inspiration post together and you can refine based on price, location and whether Etsy gift cards are accepted. I can also spend spend ages browsing the homepage, as it suggests similar items based on what you’ve previously saved and searched.
Factor in enough time when shopping. I interviewed Lucie and Alice for the #EtsyResolution project a few years ago and it really helped me understand the logistics of running a small business. There can often be a single person making, packaging and sending out items, so it won’t be possible to purchase something at 10pm on a Sunday and receive it the next day.
Remember to plan ahead of any busy seasons and double check whether items are made to order. Expanding the description will also inform you of anything to expect, such as dimensions or slight variations to the image displayed. There may also be the chance to customise certain elements.
THE NEXT PROJECT
Now I’ve got my room exactly how I like it, I’m determined to transform our drab hallway and make use of some of the extra prints we’ve got lying around. I’m inviting sellers to get involved and share any decorative items by using #DiscoverEtsy on relevant social posts.
Good luck! I’ll pick my favourite item by the 4th November and can’t wait to do a big reveal over on Instagram.