How I started An Etsy Shop

Posted by on Apr 19, 2015 in Do-It-Yourself, Frugal For Everyone, Herbs | 40 comments

 Guess what?lavenderbyLenie for blog I am now an Etsy Shop owner. That really wasn’t one of my goals for the year but sometimes life happens and you just roll with it. That’s what happened with my Etsy Shop.

What is an Etsy Shop?

Etsy is an online global market place where creative people come to sell and buy handmade or vintage items. It is also a social network made up of more than a million sellers and thirty million buyers. Since it is a social network, in order to have a successful Etsy Shop, it’s important to take an active part in the community, something I’m still learning about.

If you want to take a peek at my shop, you can find me at: https://www.etsy.com/ca/shop/LavenderbyLenie

Etsy Mother's Day Gift

This little lavender purse sachet is one of my favourites. It was inspired by memories of my mother who always carried a pretty, scented handkerchief in her purse.

How this all came about is rather interesting. It wasn’t so much that this shop was planned as that I was nudged into it. It all started back when I did a post on “Bring Back the Pollinators”.  http://frugalforeveryone.ca/bring-back-the-pollinators/  At that time I decided to increase my organic lavender garden by 120 plants to attract more bees and butterflies.

Of course that many additional lavender plants would give me a humongous amount of lavender to play with. Making up lavender products seemed the obvious solution, but then what? That’s an awful lot of gifts, so……….why not sell them. 

Etsy Shop – A perfect match.

Planning products for sale naturally requires a sales outlet. eBay was the first consideration, especially since we already had an excellent reputation there with 100% positive feedback. That was worth a lot, but eBay fees have been creeping up and are now rather on the high side. Then Meredith came along to provide the answer and this step fell into place with no effort on my part.

Meredith, a super creative member of my blogging group, had recently set up her own artsy shop on Etsy  https://www.etsy.com/ca/shop/ThePaletteMuse and wrote about it in a post on her blog.

That sounded interesting and worth looking into as a possible outlet for lavender products. As it turned out, it was a perfect match.

More learning required:

At this point I had the raw material, ideas for products and a possible sales outlet, but more was needed. Since the customers can only view photos of the products, it was important to make those appealing. This was definitely one of my weak points and something I had been working on and learning about but it was slow going. Once again things worked in my favour.

At my next visit to the Library, staff greeted me with information about free computer training they were offering they knew would be of interest to me. They know me well.

etsyFor some time learning Paint had been on my todo list and here was the perfect opportunity. Of course I signed up. The really good part, once Paint had been conquered, was that it became easy to make up the labels and envelopes for the different lavender products, as you can see from the photo to the left.

The Etsy Shop – Almost there:

Moving right along on to the next step…learning about Etsy. Things again worked according to plan – if there had been a plan, that is. It turned out that the gal teaching the computer tutorials was a bit of an Etsy expert. She knew all about it and ran me through the whole process, from setting up the shop to listing items.

And that’s how I simply coasted along to become an Etsy Shop owner.

Want to set up your own Etsy Shop?

I was extremely fortunate in getting the right information and help in the right order and at the right time. I would wish the same for others wanting to set up an Etsy Shop, but chances are it probably won’t be quite as cut and dried. However, if you are interested you can first go to https://www.etsy.com/ and check out the site. After that, you may find the following resources listed below helpful.

https://www.worldpayzinc.com/etsy-guide

https://www.etsy.com/forums

http://www.etsy.com/help/contact

http://www.etsy.com/help

My Etsy Shop is still at the beginning stage with much yet to learn, but so far so good. A few items have sold and more are being produced. Mostly it’s fun – making a few extra dollars feels pretty good too.

Talk to you again next week,

Lenie

40 Comments

  1. Gosh, I’ve been thinking about this a great deal of late. I love that you’ve done this. Hearing how you’ve gone about setting your shop up helps encourage me to do the same. Thanks a bunch. 🙂

    • Susan, absolutely. You and Etsy are a perfect match. I’ll be one of the first to favourite you. Check out the worldpayzinc link that I’ve added, it has everything you need to start an Etsy shop. Hope you do join.

  2. This is so cool Lenie! Congratulations and the very best of luck with it. I love that you explore these new ideas with such vigor. I’ll have a look at your new Etsy Shop.

    • Hi Jacquie – Isn’t life fun and a bit funny? I had no intention of starting a shop and here I am, an Entrepreneur LOL. But it does keep things interesting. Hope you do check it out.

  3. This is wonderful Lenie. Thanks for the links for Etsy. This would be great for a few of my clients. I will have them check the page out. Good luck with it.

    • Thanks, Sabrina. I think I’m going to really have some fun with one once I know what I’m doing. They also have vintage so if anyone you know has some quality stuff they need to get rid of, this may be the place and the fees are very reasonable.

  4. I love Etsy shops! Glad you started one yourself. The pin cushion is quite pretty. We bought a necklace for a friend of my daughter’s on Etsy – it came from an artisan in Australia.

    • Hi Leora, I have favourited a shop called ‘shesallgirl’ that I think is also from Australia. It has some really unique jewelry listed that I’m going to be keeping my eye on – perfect for grand-daughter gifts. I am rather pleased with myself for starting this shop – it’s going to be interesting to see where it goes.

  5. This is so great Lenie. I know a few people with Etsy shops. There is such cool stuff on Etsy, including yours. Your lavender products look great. Good luck with this new venture.

    • Thanks Donna. Isn’t Etsy neat? I can’t believe that I just found out about it through Meredith. It has all those unique items. I do hope that my shop takes off – it is so much fun thinking of things to do with lavender. And there is even a bonus. After a day making up lavender products, I sleep like a baby.

  6. Congratulations Lenie! I’m familiar with Etsy but had no idea how to get started there. The funny thing is I’m about to launch a gift shop at Zazzle with my own designs so this is great timing. If it goes well maybe I’ll branch out later this year! Best of luck and have fun.

    • Hi Marquita – That first link on my post at the bottom is really a dandy – wordlpayzinc. As a matter of fact I’m still following it myself because, even though I’m live, I need to improve the site and the promotion.
      I didn’t know about Zazzle so I just checked it out. That is a pretty cool site – wonderful for the artist. Isn’t it fun to keep doing new things. Thanks for your good wishes and the very same to you.

  7. I’m sure it is really an amazing feeling to go from a small idea in your head, to figuring out a bunch of stuff you didn’t know before, to making a product and eventually having your own etsy shop. Congratulations! There is a lavender farm a couple hours from where I live that sells homemade lavender products and everyone really loves it. I imagine your little shop will do quite well.

    • Hi Erica, I really did enjoy the process but then I was so lucky to have so many people there are the right time. I do love lavender so now I can keep myself, the bees and butterflies happy and busy. As for the shop, still lots to learn but those first little sales really felt good.

  8. Congratulations, Lenie. What a good idea. Good luck with selling your lavender products.

    • Catarina, I really never thought to start a shop at my age but here I am, an Entrepreneur. You just have to be open to new ideas. I love this.

  9. I have heard Meredith talking about her Etsy shop but never really knew the bones of it all. Good luck with this new venture and once again you are quite the inspiration.

    • Tim, I am flying high right now. I got my first review – 5 stars – from a customer in Newfoundland. She loved the product (the dryer bags) and she said she bought from a fantastic person. How cool is that. This is so fun.

  10. Congratulations Lenie on your new venture! I looked at the products and they are lovely at your store. I also appreciate you are helping others here who want to set up a shop of their own! 🙂

    • Christy, I am finding out more and more, that to really enjoy being online is to share with and learn from others. As I mentioned in my post, there were all these terrific people just waiting to pave the way, all I had to do was follow. And you know what, I am having such a good time.

  11. Lenie,
    Congratulations! How much lavender do you grow? What happens if you get swamped with orders?
    Lavender is so calming; I have lavender oil I spray on my pillowcase before going to sleep and I’m asleep in minutes. The facial scrub and the look great and I love the packaging.

    • Hi Pamela, by the end of this summer I will have about 200 plants and can hardly wait until the flowers come out and the wind blows. Can you imagine the fragrance that’s going to be wafting around this place. Everyone that comes in here will end up being sooooooo mellow and relaxed. As far as getting swamped with orders, that’s the nice part. You only list the amount that you can handle. Since this is a new venture for me I am limiting the amounts until I see which item is the most popular and which doesn’t sell at all. The facial scrub is nice but the raw material needs to be refrigerated so I am running out of room in my fridge. I’m kind of proud of the packaging – I didn’t realize I would be able to do that. Live and learn and learn.

  12. Congratulations Lenie. I registered with Etsy 2 years ago but never had the time to follow things through. Might as well get started. Thanks for your inspiration. Love the lavender!

    • Hi Bola, thanks for the congrats. I just heard about Etsy not that long ago and so far am having fun with it. I love lavender and being able to use it to make up products and make some money back on it is pretty neat.

  13. Congratulations on your shop Lennie! I recently discovered lavender sachets for keeping my clothes fresh (and free from moths) when they are in storage.

    • Hi Grace, Lavender does a great job when stored with clothes. It also has loads of health benefits and for me, I just love the smell so being able to make up products and sell them via Etsy is terrific. I’m so glad I heard about.

  14. How wonderful that you’ve opened an Etsy shop. I bet tons of great ideas will come to you. If I had more time to work on mosaics, I would consider it as well. So many possibilities. One of my former students was selling sketches on Estsy for a while and I bought one from her. I should see if she’s still in business.

    • Well, Jeri – you know this can always be an option once you retire – If I can do it, you certainly can. I have lots of ideas but I first want to see how well things sell. But no matter what, I am having a good time (and I got a wonderful review that I’m still high on)

  15. Thanks for the shout-out Lenie! I think your product is just perfect for Etsy, and your shop will do well. I love that I was able to help inspire you to do it! It’s a lot of work, but also a lot of fun to see your creativity and work being bought and appreciated by other people. That sachet is just beautiful!

    • Hi Meredith – no thanks necessary. You really did lead me to Etsy and I just know that I’m going to enjoy it. I also like your shop and hope it does well. Here’s a toast – the greatest success for the both of us.

  16. Hi Lenie,

    Congratulations for not only achieving that but sharing with us how the heck you did that. I’ve bought one thing from Etsy and that was a pattern for my Mom to make some clothing for my niece. I don’t have any products to promote there so I’ve never really taken an opportunity to dive into them more.

    I’m very proud of you young lady and know you’ll do really well. I know your products rock!

    ~Adrienne

    • Hi Adrienne, I am rather puffed up about starting this shop. Isn’t it funny how sometimes you just kind of move forward without any real effort? It was just like the Etsy Shop had a mind of its own and it pulled me right along. Glad it did because I think I am going to enjoy this – I also like making up the products. And so we keep learning and doing.

  17. Lenie — I admire your persistence in figuring out how to set up shop. I went to the site and, as I suspected, it’s designed for people who sell tangible products. I searched “writing” and found writing meant products like pads, pens, etc. for writers. So it’s not for me but I think it’s a great marketplace for people like who have something of value to sell.

    • Hi Jeannette, I actually lucked out setting up my shop. I had such fantastic help and I doubt if I could have gotten it done without that. I wouldn’t have known where to start. That’s why I added those links, they have all the information needed which will make it easier for others. I’m sorry you had no luck there but if I hear of a site for writers (maybe the library will know) then I’ll certainly pass it on.

  18. Oh my God! Congrats Lenie.
    Well done. I admire your persistence and all.
    So Proud of you.
    Of course i am going to check out your new Etsy Shop NOW!
    And also thanks for sharing the links as well.

  19. This seems like a great site. It looks like a great place to sell products you described above. Thank you for sharing this with us.

  20. Congrats on your Etsy shop. I wish you much success.

  21. As Emerson said to Whitman, “I greet you at the beginning of a great career.”

  22. According to my computer’s dictionary, lavender is “a small aromatic evergreen shrub of the mint family”. Mint? Can you make anything edible with this stuff?

    • Andy, you may be surprised at what you can make with lavender: lavender sugar, lavender sugar cookies, lavender lemonade, lavender tea (which is actually beneficial for a night-time drink), lavender ice-cream, lavender-rosemary rub for chicken, lavender-lemon rub for salmon, etc, etc. Interesting, isn’t it?