Thursday, July 22, 2010


As crafters and artists, we all tend to be a little ADD and many of us dabble in a more than one craft or make many different items. In the labs we see this through one big question asked today by GlassAli

"Would I do better with multiple shops?"

I've personally never considered two shops and so I reached out to Hollie from blueberryshoes to help answer this question. Hollie until recently had two shops on Etsy - one for fashion and one for art. Since she has experienced the one shop and two shop worlds, she is a great source of advice on the topic.

When Hollie opened her art shop, imfromthewoods, in addition to her main shop she noticed something happen immediately. "My attention was split and naturally fell onto the more successful shop-my original one. The fashion shop flourished and the art shop fell behind... In time I just didn't care about the art shop at all." It was after much deliberation that she decided to incorporate her art into her main shop not necessarily knowing if it would all flow and thrive together.

Through our conversation Hollie stressed that time is the biggest factor in deciding if you can manage two shops. "There is much power in giving a shop attention, promoting, signing into etsy with that one username, recognizable avatar, etc. Branding, really." No one is saying two shops can't be successful, but it is a major time commitment. "It takes more time and more energy to care for both... It's about how much are you able to give of yourself. And will you always be giving the same amount of attention to both?"

GlassAli, when I look at your shop I don't see a reason to open an additional shop. It's obvious to me that you enjoy making the lampwork bead pieces and have invested most your time there. This is your niche! If you work on refining your shop to focus on this style of items I think it will help your success. Now, if you really love the beaded and stamped jewelry just as much you can work on incorporating it with the lampwork pieces like with the great charms above. Or perhaps you could open another shop. Just be sure it is a time commitment you'll be able to make.


  1. Great post.

    Sadly, I must agree that if we open two shops and don't adore them equally well...don't embrace them will wane. That only enhances our feeling to support the "main" shop and turn a shoulder on the secondary shop.

    Maybe I am just not a good juggler. Having said that, my dilemma was experimenting with a lower price point shop, so maybe I'll just start giving that stuff away! :-)

  2. Such great advice! I really appreciate it and think that it is spot-on! I do love making gemstone jewelry, too, and will be adding some leather wrap bracelets, but I'm sure if I opened another shop I wouldn't be able to keep up with both. I guess if everything in the shop is in some way a reflection of me, it should have some cohesiveness that comes naturally from that. Thank you so much!

  3. Your advice made me think.
    I sell vintage on one of my sites and handmade jewelry on the other. I now wonder, because of all the situations you mentioned, would I be better to consolidate into one shop?

  4. BusyBeadLady - that's a great question. Taking a peek at each of your shops looks like all your items (handmade and vintage) have the same style or mood. You could make them all cohesive using your photographs with some work. Because the two shops have different main categories though (handmade, vintage, supplies) it could be helpful to seek out more opinions if you are truly considering combining them. I would hate for buyers to confuse which items are handmade vs. vintage. Despite all the "pros" for one shop considering time management some items may be difficult to put under the same roof.

  5. I totally agree about the time commitment point. I have 2 shops one for jewellery and one for papery things. I stuggled for a long time to try and bring a balance to them both, but decided that I needed to concentrate my efforts on the jewels and have my other shop as a 'hobby', listing if and when i made things.