Carol’s shop is full of hand built ceramics, greeting cards, prints and paintings. We came across Kabinshop during Discover Etsy as one of Lisa Dawson’s favourite Etsy buys. So let’s hear more of Carol’s story…
I first started selling on Etsy in 2015 pretty soon after I started making ceramics. I rediscovered ceramics when I took my niece, who was staying with me from the USA, to a pottery studio, I had not tried it since school and I loved it!
I have always had creative jobs as I am also an illustrator and make-up artist, and although I have websites for each, this was when I started selling my work online to the public. There are very few good e commerce sites for handmade work you can getting up and running as quickly and easily as Etsy.
Bowls are currently my favourite product to make. For some reason I find bowls quite therapeutic to make, maybe its the smoothing action.
The sky is the limit as to the size, shape and colour a bowl can be, and I like that they are both useful and decorative.
Be authentic! Don’t copy anyone else. Why would you not want to be original? I think it is important to be true to your brand and your ethics, I would never custom make anything that was not my style or felt wrong and I have turned away a lot of requests. Intellectual property is a serious issue and being copied is devastating. Being sustainable and conscious of where all your materials and packaging are sourced is also very important.
I rarely look at other potter’s work. I am inspired by painting, nature, engineering, Wes Anderson movies, just about everything really.
If you want your shop to be successful, be prepared to work really hard.
Making ceramics is very labour intensive, I am a bit extreme as I work all the time, i have always been a workaholic i am in a constant competiton with myself. I rarely take time off and when I do, I go to the beach or to Los Angeles and visit every art gallery, museum and thrift store I can find.
I constantly create new products, the good thing about being a small business is that you can constantly try out new ideas and put them out very quickly to test them. If they work, you can make more! Being able to adapt and pivot is essential. I keep trying to get better and learn new things and also learn from my mistakes. I love experimenting with glazes, sometimes they work and sometimes they don’t!
I have various goals for my work for the future which include making a separate collection of sculptural art pieces as well as expanding my main range of ceramics. I also want to do more painting and add to my prints.