Congratulations to Katherine B., who won the $50 gift certificate from Amazon.com! Congratulations to Michele, who won the $75 gift certificate from Red Ruby Rose.
I have to tell you, it was such an awesome thing to read all the wonderful comments about what you all are thankful for, or about someone who helped you out in some way. If you ever get frustrated with life, come back here and read the comments on the Amazon.com giveaway post! It will help you to be grateful and just feel super blessed!
Today, we are featuring Michelle Brusegaard, from Minneapolis. Michelle's shop has caught my eye several times, as I see her things in Etsy Gift Guides and treasuries alike. She is a very talented individual and I'm sure you will agree once you see her shop!
Let's get to know Michelle a little better.
TDB: What inspires you when it comes to crafting?
Michelle: I most frequently get inspired by new materials--a new paint medium, a new ink color, or a new pen. There's so many more possibilities with new tools and supplies! I spend a lot of time indoors at my computer, so when I do something simple like walk to the coffee shop (which is 3 blocks away...)I get a ton of new ideas just stepping back for a moment and looking at the foliage.
TDB: What is your favorite thing to create?
Michelle: This is an impossible question for me to answer. I am actively working on batik, screen-printing, oil painting, illustrating, card-making and photography. I tend to get tired of one and then switch to the other for a bit, which is most likely why I have taken up so many art forms. That said, I think I just realized what my favorite thing to do is: draw. Drawing is at the core of pretty much every creative thing I do, and it always sounds like fun to me.
TDB: What makes you smile?
Michelle: Right now? Last week my brother and sister-in-law found their cat that had been missing for 388 days, about a mile away from their house.
TDB: Who has been the greatest positive influence in your life, and why?
Michelle: I am just going to say "my family," as if they were one giant person. My grandmother introduced me to craftiness; my parents support it; and my husband has always encouraged me to apply for shows and keep at it. And my best friend Joj, who comes to all the craft shows as my booth buddy.
TDB: You're coming up on your 2 year anniversary on Etsy. What advice would you give to a new seller, that you wish someone would have told you back then?
1. List, list, re-list everyday, 2 or 3 times a day!
I'm sure you've heard it before, but I do believe it's the key to success! I once read a forum post where someone was recommending it--she compared it to purchasing an advertising slot on the etsy showcase, which costs $14/day. I'd purchased showcase spots before, and had gotten some new hearts, but not always a sale. Then I read about this re-listing business and thought I'd give it a try since it's only 20 cents, so maybe 60 cents a day on advertising, and my sales have gone way up since then.
2. Have a flickr account and a blog. It's a great way to share your work and a bit more about yourself.
3. Make things custom! People love something that's customized especially for them.
4. Be patient. It takes awhile to get the sales going. And while you're being patient, make new products and work on your techniques. Then when you do get busy, you'll have everything all figured out.
5. Don't forget to enjoy yourself. If you want to be your own boss, be the kind of boss that holds office olympics involving paper clip tossing and paper airplane making.
TDB: What new skill would you like to learn?
Michelle: Encaustic painting, hands down. It just looks so cool!
TDB: If you could have three wishes, what would they be?
Michelle: I have a bad habit of wasting wishes, I am always saying things like "I wish I had a coke," or "I wish I had the weekend off." But I will take the high road here, and wish for world peace, an end to poverty, and good health for everyone.
Thanks for sharing with us Michelle.