Wednesday, November 21, 2012

Foxy Friends: Peaches and Pebbles

Why don't you start by telling the readers a little bit about yourself and your shop.
My name is Kim, I'm 21, and I've been my mum's carer for a couple of years now. She suffers Multiple Sclerosis and looking after her is a full time job, so while my dad works, I'm at home with her. She's always had the condition through my life, so I'm quite used to it, and I don't see it fully as a bad thing. I can't get a job because I'm needed at home all the time, but it means I can use all of my free time while there to work on my Etsy shop, my blog, and, more importantly, my fantasy writing so I might eventually have my dream career.

Do you have a favorite piece or project that you have worked on?
My favourite piece in my shop would probably be my dinosaur necklaces. I'll be honest, I didn't enjoy making them because they were so time consuming and fiddly (which also means I'm finding many excuses to procrastinate when it comes to remaking sold pieces), but the finished pieces were so good in my eyes that it's worth the time it takes. The favourite thing I've made, though, is probably either my paper mache ship, or my repurposed Xbox 360 clock. Both pieces are hanging in my bedroom and I'm quite proud of them ^^

Describe your studio...
Eesh. My studio is also my bedroom, so it's quite cluttered since there's not much room in the house, what with all the disabled equipment and all, but I certainly make do. My boyfriend plays on his Xbox all the time so I have some entertainment while I work. I just recently cleared out the bottom drawer of my wardrobe to store the fabrics for the plushies for a new shop I'm working on building up, so it's nice to have a truly designated area for my work.

Otherwise, my desk is my world. I only got it in about 6 months ago, I used to make everything at my lap instead, so the desk has sped up productivity, and given me a little more space. It's surprising how underrated tables are.

How soon after you started creating did you decide to turn your craft into a business?
I've been crafting all my life. I made cars for my dolls with tissue boxes and toilet rolls and things like that when I was little, half of my dolls' furniture was made by me :P But I turned to making jewellery a few years ago after speaking to someone on Deviant Art. She made polymer clay sweets, and they were really good! I even bought one and commissioned a gingerbread man (which unfortunately fell victim to a small furry beast who decided his leg looked tasty) which, despite its broken leg, I still wear. I tried using polymer clay at that point, making little white clouds with hanging rainbow rain. I opened my shop with one item shortly afterwards, around June 2011, and actually really liked it. I decided I needed a new shop name, since I was using an account I made to purchase with first, and Peaches and Pebbles was born - and I did add new stock eventually! Fittingly, the dinosaurs are the oldest thing in the shop right now.

What else do you like to do when you're not working on your crafts?
Anything I can get my hands on. If my boyfriend isn't on the Xbox, I'll certainly glue myself to Skyrim for as long as I can, or I'll watch Bleach (I'm far from an anime fan, believe me, but this one is a huge exception - I've never watched anything that has kept me as interested as that has), read, or put some work into whichever story I'm working on - sometimes Kysharok, the fantasy story I post installments of on my blog, or the book I'm trying to pitch to literary agencies.

What is the most difficult and your most favorite part of crafting as a business?
The most difficult part is certainly getting people's attention. You can have a brilliant product or idea, but getting the right people to see it is very hard work - work, I feel, I've not yet mastered. But when I make a sale, it makes me feel so fluffy inside because someone saw my work and liked it enough to part with their precious coin, and it means a lot to me. Most people who buy from me signed up specifically to do so, which is also a great feeling, because it feels like I'm responsible for bringing them to Etsy, and they'll hopefully turn to other wonderful sellers and support them too.

The best part, of course, is making money for things I enjoy doing. I love making things, I honestly do, and I love buying handmade just as much, so it's even better when I've made something and I get something back from it. I have done a trade once, and that person has become one of my best friends!

What is your favorite: a) scent? b) movie? c) blog/website? d) guilty pleasure?
Scent...hmm...basil. I once had a bubble bath that was basil and lemongrass. It was the best thing ever, but I only got one bottle before it was discontinued. I've been looking for something similar ever since but nothing is ever good enough. How sad. Since then I've grown fond of the scent of basil, though ^^

My favourite movie is probably the Lord of the Rings. TV show would be Bleach. I'm a fantasy nut, though, so if magic is involved, then I am so there. I cannot wait for the Hobbit. It comes out on December 14th, I think. My birthday is the 9th of January and my boyfriend's is the 28th of December, so we're going between the two for dinner and to see it. I can't wait!!

Website...probably VividPlease. They make some nice original tutorials - I especially love their DIY screen printing! Very helpful for future products ^^ Plus they have a shop too, which is just the cutest!

Guilty pleasure would be chocolate. I don't care how cliche an answer that is, it is my guilty pleasure, I eat it in shame and buy it when I can. Unfortunately, I'm having to cut back because it's becoming an addiction (no chocolate in my vicinity generally means tantrum time).

Lastly, do you have any advice for fellow crafters/entrepreneurs just starting out?
Yes! I do. Patience. Honestly. Do not expect to open your shop and make a sale in the first week, if even the first month. Make sure you have several items, ideally at least 10, and open with that. When someone comes into your shop or your website, they'll have a better idea of what you do, and more of an impression of a hard worker. I don't know about you but when I see a shop with 3 items, I walk the other way. It makes the shop owner seem clueless with what they're doing, that they don't care for their shop or product, and that if you were to send them a message or make a purchase, they may not get back to you for weeks.

Opening up with several items also gives people more choice and is more likely to lead to your first sale. But in the mean time, during that first month, work hard on titles, tags, photos and descriptions. Etsy's relevancy search is default and relies on relevant titles and tags, and you also have to remember that people cannot pick up your products if they're online. The pictures must be clear, and the descriptions must detail the important info - the size, material, if something is silver plated or sterling silver (it can make a massive difference, and may result in negative feedback and problems - even health - if people misunderstand), and if something is unusually heavy or light, make sure to say that too

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Thank you so much, Kim! 

You can find more info about Kim or Peaches and Pebbles by following the links below!

Twitter  |  Facebook  |  Blog  |  Etsy Shop

1 comment:

  1. Great interview, I love getting to understand the creators behind the works!!


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