A. I appreciate your compliments and positive assessment of my Etsy shop. The presentation of the shop evolved as my skill for product placement and photography developed. If I had all of the resources in the world to hire a photographer and baby models that would be ideal, however progress in this department has been slow. I settled for buying the best camera that I could afford and taking my products outside in the natural light. I looked at other Etsy shops that I liked and tried to emulate their presentation style. I also try to think of the presentation in terms of what the customer needs. They need to be able to see as much detail as possible, the product needs to be set against a simple backdrop and the photos need to be clear and vibrant. I have finally invested in a couple of baby mannequins and I am going to be experimenting with a few props such as vintage toy trucks and children’s furniture. I am really excited to take my presentation to a new level.
Q. Which of your adorable items do you enjoy making the most?
A. It all depends on my mood. One day I’ll spend crocheting booties like crazy because I can’t get enough of this process and the next I’ll be knitting the ponchos. I very much enjoy working with all natural yarns. They feel so good slipping off the needles and through my hands. I feel really proud when I finish an item and every time I hold it up and show it off to my family. I make the little poncho dance or the little booties tap. Sometimes I think I am having a bit too much fun. I feel really fortunate to be able to do something I am passionate about each and every day.
Q. Please share with us how you balance being a busy working Mom, counsellor, and educator with your business and blog.
A. Well, I am quite accustomed to being a busy woman. My son was born when I was 19 and I was a single parent. I put myself through college and university and had a part-time job and volunteer work on top of all of that. Now my son has just begun his first year of high school and I have a partner in my life. I have left my full-time job and have been pursuing my crafty business since January 2010. I have taken a huge pay cut, but it was well worth it. Now that my son is older and I have a lot less on my plate I can devote all of my time to building up a healthy business. Busy now is nothing compared to what I dealt with before so now I feel like I can handle anything!
Q. I couldn’t help but notice your nickname is Bee. How delightful, especially since you’re a member of CreatingTheHive. How did you discover the community?
A. To my partner I am “Bee”. He wasn’t allowed to call me “Melissa” because no one close to me calls me by my name. He came up with “Bee” because my name means honey bee. My mom calls me “Lissy”, friends call me “Mel”. My online persona is “LadeeBee”. It is fitting that a bee has joined the Hive. I found out about the Hive through LinkdIn.
Q. Melissa, do you have any tips for the readers who are just starting a business?
A. Wow, yes so many. There really is so much to learn. I would say one of the best things I have done is to create or look for opportunities and to follow my instincts. In addition grow your business slowly because it will take time to learn. You need a good foundation for success.
Please share with us any upcoming events, sales, or anything you would like the readers to know about you and Vintage Baby Revival?
Vintage Baby Revival on Etsy.com
“classic designs with an old-school feeling”
Handmade knits and accessories for infants, toddlers, and preschool children. We use only the best luxurious 100% washable wool and cotton. We also specialize in gender neutral designs.
Blogs: vintagebabyrevival.blogspot.com and
Ladee Bee Supplies on Etsy.com
Fans of Vintage Baby Revival on Facebook.
For Events Visithttp://torontocloseknit.blogspot.com/p/upcoming-events.html
One of a Kind Show and SaleToronto, Ontario, Canada
Rising Stars section from November 25-December 5 2010.
Thank you Melissa, for taking time away from your busy Bee life and sharing with us your thoughts, beautiful shop items and your knitfilled life.