Thursday, December 2, 2010

Baby Swank is EtsyMom's Marvelous Mom!

Find it here on the Etsy Mom Blog!

Our Marvelous Mom is Meagan of Baby Swank. She is also the winner of our Etsy Mom Curator Award, with a whopping 23 treasuries made in just 30 days. Read on to learn more about this creative and fabulous team member!

Tell us about yourself!

I'm a 26 year old stay-at-home-mom with two children at the moment (boys - ages 2 1/2 and 8 months), hopefully more as time goes on. I love my husband and my family. They are my best friends, and they're very encouraging in all I do! I live in a small town in Northeast Tennessee in the beautiful Appalachian Mountains! 

I love anything creative and crafty. I have all sorts of "crafting" projects going on all the time. I really enjoy taking nothing and making something. There's something so fulfilling in that for me. I started my artistic journey with scrapbooking, from there sewing, then to painting, pottery, soapmaking, jewelry making, card making, cake decorating, etc. Like I said, I like to do a little bit of everything, but there are so many more things I'd like to learn as well. I love to make things that are fun, pretty, and different.

What makes you unique?

Personally - I'm comfortable in my own skin, with who I am. I don't feel like I have be the same as everyone else. I have my own likes and interests, ideas, and ways of doing things and I'm comfortable with myself!
Business-wise - I try to make items that are different from other sellers or that I've not found in other places on the web. I put my own likes and style into them which is always changing, and I'm in the process of really branding my items to help set me apart from all the other great sellers out there in my niche.

What do you love about kids?

I love that they are so innocent and impressionable. That they're trusting and loving. They are empty books, and everything we (and others) do, say, and teach is filling those books. That's a huge responsibility! I love watching them grow and learn about life. I love the funny and insightful things they say! I love watching them interact with other kids their age. 

What are you currently doing besides your shop crafts?

Well like I said earlier, I'm into all sorts of artistic things, so at the moment I've been working on some sewing projects that I've been wanting to get to for a while. I made myself a dress, and I recovered my little guys carseat form a PDF tutorial from an Etsy seller. I'm recovering a glider rocker to go in my nursery. I'm starting to get busy making Christmas gifts for family members. My SIL's and I are working on a quilted family tree wall hanging for our inlaws! I also love to make cakes, and so I do that locally. You can see some of the cakes I've made on my blog. Like anything else though, thank goodness for progress!
What is the link to your etsy shop?


What do you offer in your etsy shop? 

Currently I offer handmade baby bibs and toddler bibs called Washcloth Bibs, reusable flannel baby wipes, personalized cloth diaper covers, satin bound flannel blankets, and my plush animal "chickie". I'm currently working on a new product line that will come out in 2011 - All Natural Baby Products! I'm really into natural, healthy living so I'm really excited about this new line!

Where do you create?

Right now my craft room is my dinning room! It's a mess! I'm in the process of moving all my crafting stuff to a specific area. I just have to figure out where that will be and get it organized and ready. I love seeing other sellers crafting spaces. I always wonder if they're that neat and organized all the time or just for pictures! LOL!

Where do you find your inspiration? 

Well, since I create baby items, I get most of my inspiration from my kids and other little ones around me.  I like eco-friendly, natural type products so I also try to get ideas on how to make those types of things cute and fashionable as well. Like I said earlier, I live in the Appalachian Mountains, and there are so many artistic, creative people here. I love to meet artists and watch what they do. The story's behind their lives and their crafts are priceless.

How did you get started in your current line of business? 

I had a friend who's a seller here on Etsy tell me about it, and suggested that I get into selling the things I made. So I started up a shop not really knowing much about how to make it successful. I put all kinds of things on there that I made, and I didn't really work at promoting it so it didn't do much for me. About a year later I decided that I'd give it another go on Etsy, but get specific in what I was selling and really work at making it successful. So here I am! It's a journey.

How do you promote your business? 

Right now I use Facebook, Twitter, and my blog. I try to get to know other Etsy sellers and bloggers, and I post in the forums when I can. I also try to be involved in Labs when they're going on too. I'm a member of two Etsy teams, Etsy Moms and SAHMs of Etsy!
What is one of the most important lessons you've learned since starting your business?
Perseverance and patience. That's two, but they go hand in hand! It's gonna start out slow, but you have to continue to work. Eventually it will pay off!

What advice would you give someone just starting out?

First I'd say set aside time or times everyday to do business work. Don't let it consume your entire life. Prioritize and make the most of your family time and work time. Second would be - make connections and friends. Invest in others, and they'll invest in you. It's not just about selling and making money here. Making friendships with others is such a blessing!

What are some of your favorite online shops, both etsy and non-etsy?

Etsy :
Romancing Juliet 
Hipchic Designs 
Malibu Quilts 
Bulk Herb Store 

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