Please extend a warm LabRats welcome to our Feature Friday artist this week, Dee from 4GetMeNotTreasures!
Where can we find you on the web?
1. Tell us about yourself, your shop, and what brought you to the Etsy community.
I’m 48, married, have 3 children and a grandson that will turn 1 in December. I live on Long Island, NY with my husband, two sons, a menagerie of dogs & cats and a turtle. I’m heavily involved in Boy Scouting & help plan events for hundreds of Scouts through the year. Needless to say – it’s a busy – and cluttered household in more ways than one! :)
I’ve always loved collecting things. I’ve been collecting ever since I can remember – and the older I get, the worse the compulsion is. It’s in the genes. My grandmother & grand aunt were both “antiquers” – well…..my aunt collected just about anything. And…my mom collected anything AND everything, & this apple did not fall far from that tree!
I’ve also been crafting since I was in the single digits. The diorama eggs I started making when I was around 8 years old. I love turning trash into treasures. Add to all this that I am an extreme sentimentalist – or as some would say – a pack rat. I save just about everything! I love junk…it almost always turns out to be quite the treasure (at least in my eyes). In what little spare time I have, I like to craft (usually using some “junk”), cross stitch, & garden (where you’ll see more “junk”).
I found Etsy in some magazine years ago and, of course procrastinated on looking into it. One of the collectibles newsletters I receive suggested Etsy as a venue for selling vintage & antiques, so I looked…lurked…& liked what I saw. I could blend both worlds that I loved – collecting & crafting into one place….and moreover it was a community – not just a “site”.
My mom and I loved to shop flea markets, second-hand stores, antique stores, garage sales and auctions (you’ve got the idea!). She had so many plans for us and our collecting frenzies but unfortunately passed on before we could see any of it come to fruition together. And, like many people it’s time for me to begin to pass on some of my – and my family’s – treasures. In a few years I plan on moving to my mom’s house…a house which is considerably smaller than my own & packed with just as much stuff (if not more). No matter how much I have tried to ignore the obvious, I now have to face the reality. My packed house and her packed house are impossible to combine (that is if I want to be able to actually live in the house :) )!!
4Get-Me-Not Treasures is in a sense, a tribute to mom. Her favorite flower, combined with the promise that I will forget-her-not – nor the promises, dreams, and times we shared. She and I can still work together side-by-side while in different worlds. What more could anyone ask for?
2. Walk us through a typical day in your life.
I get up at 7 AM turn on the computer en route to making coffee. While that’s brewing I open up the 7 windows in my browser that I bounce in throughout the day and any of the other “windows” I’ll be needing. Usually – by then – I can steal the first cup of coffee. I glance through emails & threads to see if there is anything earth shattering that I need to know. By then…it’s time for a refill & I begin to figure out the day. If there have been any sales I print out invoices etc. I look at the first page of my shop & then see what’s expiring. I’m trying to list/renew at least 4 items a day now while trying to vary the type of items I list daily (that saves on having to rearrange things later). I make sure that I have all I need to list the items for that day & then figure out what I’m going to be listing the next day. (I’m trying to stay at least one day ahead). Then, it’s time to figure out what I’m low on so I know what to research.
By this time – it’s time for cup 3…and grandbaby usually arrives around this time. For the next 8 hours – the day is a grab as I can. When I research I write outlines for every item that also include the tags, weight & price, & picture numbers. So, at some point I find the outline for the item(s) I’m going to list and put together the description so it’s ready to be listed at its “proper” time. I try to do this while the baby is napping. When he is up & playing - I research (my train of thought can be interrupted then).
The holes in the rest of the day get filled with the various other things – packing orders, cleaning items, polishing silver, etc., whatever needs to be done. I also spend a good deal of time in one of the other clubs I’m involved with here on Etsy.
After grandbaby leaves for the evening, I enjoy another nice hot cup of coffee while catching up with folks in the club. Then – it’s serious quiet time – where I pull together as many of the dangling threads of the day, gather stuff for hubby to take pics of, & really buckle down into the research. This is also when I might make an egg or figure out a new cross-stitch design…or something else crafty. My day ends…around 12 – 1AM.
3. Name your top 3...
- Books -any of the CHICKEN SOUP FOR THE SOUL books; DON’T SWEAT THE SMALL STUFF
Music - old...and that I can understand the words.
- Movies - not a real movie person of today
- TV - Only have the TV on when I go to bed - and only HGTV.
- Websites -couldn’t even begin to list them. Research takes me everywhere...and I love it.
Top 3? Are you kidding!? No way….can’t do it. Sorry.
5. Where do you hope your shop will be in one year?
500 items with consistent sales and a reasonable monthly income.
6. What projects are you currently working on ?
Too many. I have about 6 cross stitch designs in my brain that I need to put to paper; five eggs that I’d like to get to…and finish, including the Halloween one I started a month ago. I'm trying to bring up all the sections in my shop to a minimum of one full page each, get to 250 items in the shop, and have a backup of 25 listings & pictures for them ready to go at a moment’s notice so I don’t feel so harried all the time.
7. What suggestions/tips would you offer to someone new to Etsy?
Oh, I have a lot! Patience, time, lower your expectations but raise your personal bar. Sales don’t happen right away – and certainly don’t happen just because you listed an item. Don’t worry. Keep listing; keep creating; keep listing. Learn all you can…but you don’t have to apply everything all at once – every time. If you continue to worry & perfect the same 5 – 10 listings you’ll never move forward – you’ll be stagnant. Potential customers will only see those same 5-10 listings, they’ll get bored & not return. Improve over time. Customers will see that…and respect that – and…at the same time see just how creative & wonderful you are because they’ll see all the fantastic new stuff you’ve listed.
Don’t worry about the “Front Page” and treasuries. Learn to do everything else well…and those will come in time. Focus on building your shop. And though pictures are very important – pictures are not how people will find you. Titles and tags are what lead people to your shop…descriptions and pictures are what sell your items. Remember, in order for them to buy from you – they have to find you first.