This month, our spotlight shop owner is Jessica Kirkland from Pen & Paper Flowers! Jessica is a designer who’s passionate about digital design, party styling, home decorating and baking. Her Etsy page features custom silhouettes, party invitations, party printables and art prints for home decor. What’s really neat is that all of the invitations and designs in Jessica’s shoppe are customizable! Check out all of the items Jessica has for sale in her Etsy shop HERE. You can also connect with Jessica on her Blog, Pinterest, Facebook, or Twitter!
These are some of our favorite designs!
Here’s more about Jessica and her Etsy shop owner experiences:
How long have you been selling on Etsy and what made you decide to start selling?
I opened my shoppe in January of 2010 at the urging of some of my blog readers.
How do you choose what to make and sell in your shop?
The things I’ve got in my Esty shoppe are all centered around paper and ink – in digital format for the most part. Most of the items are printable party accessories (invitations, thank you cards, cupcake toppers, etc.) for customers to be able to print from home. I also design Art Prints including (Chalkboard Art Prints) for home decor as well as party decor. The party designs have been inspired by party themes I’ve hosted for my own children as well as customer requested themes. The inspirational art prints I offer in my shoppe are designed using original quotes I create and feel might inspire others (or make them giggle).
How long does the average item in your shop take to make?
A custom designed invitation can take 1-3 days to create depending on the complexity of the design and the overall specifics from the person requesting it. (myself or a customer). If a customer selects an existing item in the shoppe they have the option for receiving it immediately if it’s an instant download or within 48-72 hours if there is personal information to include. (ie, party invitations and custom party banners, etc.).
Why do you think Etsy is such a great place to buy?
I think Etsy is a great platform for a buyer because there is such a large variety of sellers and products offering original, unique handmade items. There really is something for everyone. I also think Etsy’s reputation allows the buyer some reassurance knowing they are purchasing from a secure site. Etsy is dedicated to making sure both the buyer and seller have a positive experience together.
What is your most favorite item that you’ve ever sold or listed?
I actually have two favorite items I’ve sold in my Etsy shoppe. The first is an inspirational art print entitled “Be”. It was the very first item listed in my shoppe and was also my very first sale. Not only does it have sentimental value, since it represents overcoming any fears about following my dreams, but it’s still one of my favorite art prints to date. The other favorite item in my shoppe is the printable Rustic Popcorn Bar Collection. It’s been a hot seller for all kinds of occasions and was recently shown on the Today Show. *squealing with delight*
Have you had any crazy requests for items?
Thankfully, my entire experience with Etsy customers has been positive. I’ve been fortunate enough to work with a lot of great people who have actually turned into repeat customers…and some I now view as friends. The only crazy requests I’ve received are usually associated with impossible deadlines or turn-around times, not products.
What advice would you offer to someone wants to get started on ETSY?
Jump in. Stop over-thinking things or waiting until just the right time. Even if you only have 1 or 2 items to offer, get them listed. That’s the only way to ever get started.
What is the most important lesson you have learned when selling on ETSY?
Stay completely away from anything that could be considered copyright infringement. I received a customer request for a Hello Kitty themed party collection one time. (I receive character-themed birthday party requests all of the time but always decline). Against my better judgment, I agreed to design something that would “hint” of Hello Kitty but that wouldn’t contain any images of Hello Kitty. Shortly after having spent all of this time creating a beautiful party collection the customer fell in love with, the minute I listed it in my shop for other interested customers to buy, I received my first “possible” copyright infringement notification. It scared me and I felt like I should’ve known better. I removed the collection from my shoppe immediately and have never looked back. Although I had a happy customer, I also spent hours and hours on something I couldn’t resell in my shoppe. I’ve heard of so many shops being shut down because of this and who wants to build a shop and a customer base to then have it taken away? Stay away from copyright infringement.
Do you sell at Craft Fairs/Bazaar’s too?
I have not sold my items at craft fairs or bazaar’s but I have considered it. However, the things I offer in my shoppe don’t require me to keep much of an inventory of products since the majority of what I make and sell are digital files. I may branch out one day and participate in a smaller community event showcasing some of the Art Prints just to see what kind of response I receive.
Etsy is pretty awesome, right?! Well, one lucky reader will win a $50 gift card to Etsy! To enter, just leave a comment below telling us what your favorite item in Jessica’s shop is, and use the Rafflecopter widget below for extra entries!