A. Margaret, I want to Thank You for offering me this excellent opportunity to be interviewed by a well known crafter! I have been doing needlework ever since I can remember. I owe my interest to my late grandmother, who taught me how to cross-stitch, needlepoint and knit. One thing she loved but could not teach me was crochet and macramé – I just could never remember patterns.
Q. You're a natural! There is so much variety in your cards, bookmarks and banners. Where to you find inspiration for your designs?
A. Most of the cross-stitch cards are patterns I have accumulated through the years. Sometimes, I get adventurous and change thread colors – just to see what results I get. Recently, I had a few custom orders, where my client needed me to create a card around a certain quote she provided. It was a bit of a challenge, being that it was a first for me. My client was quite pleased, so I knew I could try my hand at designing my own patterns.
Q. Yes, I think many of us have to make that leap from the original idea to create something wonderful. We would all like to know how you balance your busy shop with your everyday life. Do you have any tips for other Etsy shop owners or anyone thinking of starting a shop?
A. In October 2008, I decided to return to school and get a Bachelor’s degree in Web Design and Multimedia. One of the first things I had to learn during the first term was Time Management.
· Involve yourself in the Forum – you will find lots of experienced Etsyans ready and willing to help you succeed.
· As much as possible, participate in the workshops. I have learned quite a bit when I started going.
· Make sure you advertise your shop: business cards, flyers, links on your website and your blog, Twitter, Facebook, MySpace, Project Wonderful. There are lots of free or inexpensive avenues to let people know what your shop is about and what you can offer them.
Q. Those are all wonderful suggestions, Anca, thank you, Do you have any upcoming events, new items, hopes for your business, or any other info that you would like to share with us?
A. I try to keep my shop’s appearance fresh and not repeat creating the same items. I am actively working on developing hand painted watercolor cards. I have seen numerous cards that are mainly printed reproductions of an original, and I want to offer my customers unique pieces that will make them happy! I tend to be a perfectionist in what I do, after all my customers deserve no less than the absolute best I can offer them.
Margaret, thank you so much for taking an interest in my work and my shop; it was very stimulating to be asked for an interview and it was a pleasure to chat with you!
FarAway Designs on Etsy: http://FarAwayDesigns.etsy.com
FarAway Designs Cards Blog: http://faraway-designs.blogspot.com
FarAway Designs on Twitter: http://twitter.com/FarAwayDesigns