Friday, March 23, 2012

Great Idea Taken Down by Bad Timing

I recently learned about an amazing product.  Unfortunately, I heard about it because they are going out of business.  The Swany Walkin'Bag, was designed by a Japanese CEO who is a polio survivor. Etsuo Miyoshi needed a bag that was light, easy to maneuver, and that he could literally lean on for support. With two of these suitcases, he could lean on the extended handles and use them like crutches.
Fortuno
Despite the great success of these bags, the downturn in the economy and then supply problems resulting from the Japanese earthquake and tsunami last year led Swany to close their operations in the United States.  It's a real shame since these are really amazing bags/suitcases. They're offering my readers an amazing price on their remaining bags.

More details about the bags and the discount are on my other blog

Coming up with an awesome and innovative product doesn't always guarantee you success. There are so many variables to success in business that you can't know for sure what will happen.  I can think of a lot of examples just off the top of my head. When the home video recorder first came on the scene, the Beta format was the better product, but the VHS format ended up pushing Beta out of the market. Kodak was once king of the photography scene. Unfortunately, they missed the boat on the whole digital revolution. Sony was the top dog when I was a teenager because everyone wanted a Walkman. They were caught napping when more people wanted mp3 players and left CD and tape players behind. 

I don't say all this to discourage you. It's just good to know that things don't always work out perfectly. If your efforts don't pay off this time, don't give up.  Keep trying. Keep creating. You won't know which one of your inventions, creations, innovations, or dreams will be a hit until it happens.

Wednesday, March 21, 2012

The Other Side of Me

I try hard not to go too far astray on this blog. It's important to keep close to the topic of selling handmade items, but I felt I had more to share. To satisfy that need, I started a new blog: The Spirit Bead Journals  The name is based on a nickname my husband gave me.  There is no particular focus there; just me sharing things I think about, experiences I've had, and (most recently) the agony of my job loss and resulting job search.

Today was my second day at a new job. I'm a Development Specialist for the Utah-Southern Idaho Chapter of the National Multiple Sclerosis Society. It's wonderful to have a new job and a new purpose. The only drawback is that I have to commute for the first time in my working career and that eats into my "free" time.  I hope you'll have patience with me. Drop by The Spirit Bead Journals from time to time to see what else I'm doing.

Etsy Wednesday Promote Your Shop Linky Party #39

Welcome to ETSY WEDNESDAY!
This week I'm featuring Like Mother, Like Daughter hand stamped jewelry. Karen and Kaitlin are a mother and daughter team who have been on Etsy nearly a year. I love that they have more than just letter stamps. Take a look at all the other stamps they use plus fun charms and embellishments. Each piece is custom made for you when you order it. It sure looks like this team is having fun with their craft.

Make sure you link up to the party.  You could be the featured shop next week.

Other linky parties say "NO Etsy shops" but we say YES!!  Here's your chance to market or promote your online store for FREE.  Once you link up your shop, don't forget to spread the word to other sellers as well as your friends who are in the mood for shopping.  Don't worry, you can still link up even if you're on Artfire, Zibbet, 1000 Markets, Folksy, etc.  Wondering what a Linky Party is or how it works?  Read this explanation for help.

Etsy Wednesday Linky Party Guidelines
  • Remember to visit other shops on the list.
  • Because this is promoting Etsy shops, I'm not going to require that you add my blog button to your shop (it's not possible anyway).  However,I'm hoping you will see it in your heart to add my button to your blog; stay connected to me on Facebook, Twitter, or my RSS feed; and/or promote this link party in your own way.  
  • Share this blog post however you can.  We want as many people as possible to look at your shops. 
  • Leave a comment telling the favorite shop you found on the list (other than your own, of course). 

Etsy Wednesdays




TIME TO JOIN THE ETSY MADNESS....

Monday, March 19, 2012

Monday Madness - Etsy Direct Checkout

Some of you may have already noticed Etsy's announcement about the launch of Etsy Direct Checkout.  Only a few select shops are using right now, but you can sign up to be added to the list so you're notified when it's available. This will give you another payment option besides PayPal for U.S.-based sellers. I've really had no problems with Paypal, so I wasn't too interested at first. After I looked at the fees for the service, I was a little intrigued.

Photo by cklausen
Etsy Direct Checkout charges 3% plus $0.25 per sale.  PayPal charges 2.9% plus $0.30 per sale.  These amounts are very similar, but the fees are slightly less using Etsy Direct until you have sales over $50. A couple of pennies probably won't make a big difference unless you sell a large number of low price items.

Sale Etsy Direct PayPal
3.0% + $0.25 2.9% + $0.30
$1.00 $0.28 $0.33
$5.00 $0.40 $0.45
$10.00 $0.55 $0.59
$15.00 $0.70 $0.74
$20.00 $0.85 $0.88
$25.00 $1.00 $1.03
$30.00 $1.15 $1.17
$35.00 $1.30 $1.32
$40.00 $1.45 $1.46
$45.00 $1.60 $1.61
$50.00 $1.75 $1.75
$75.00 $2.50 $2.48
$100.00 $3.25 $3.20


Etsy will deposit the funds in your bank account each Monday and expects they will appear in your bank account in 3-5 business days. The funds will not be available for deposit until about three days after you mark the item as "shipped." PayPal holds your money until you direct it to do otherwise. You can get a debit card to access your funds. PayPal says that transfers to your bank account take 3-5 days. 

Will you be switching over to Etsy Direct Checkout or staying with PayPal?

Wednesday, March 14, 2012

Etsy Wednesday Promote Your Shop Linky Party #38

Welcome to ETSY WEDNESDAY!
Tune Tube by relaine
This week I have chosen relaine's shop on Etsy to be featured.  The shop description cracks me up:
There are so many fun fabrics that I couldn't possibly make something for myself out of every single one, and yet I want to sew with them all! So I compromise and make things for other people.
That's a great attitude! Sometimes I feel that way about the things I make. It wouldn't be right to keep them all, but I just can't stop creating.

Make sure you link up to the party.  You could be the featured shop next week.

Other linky parties say "NO Etsy shops" but we say YES!!  Here's your chance to market or promote your online store for FREE.  Once you link up your shop, don't forget to spread the word to other sellers as well as your friends who are in the mood for shopping.  Don't worry, you can still link up even if you're on Artfire, Zibbet, 1000 Markets, Folksy, etc.  Wondering what a Linky Party is or how it works?  Read this explanation for help.

Etsy Wednesday Linky Party Guidelines
  • Remember to visit other shops on the list.
  • Because this is promoting Etsy shops, I'm not going to require that you add my blog button to your shop (it's not possible anyway).  However, I'm hoping you will see it in your heart to add my button to your blog; stay connected to me on Facebook, Twitter, or my RSS feed; and/or promote this link party in your own way.  
  • Share this blog post however you can.  We want as many people as possible to look at your shops. 
  • Leave a comment telling the favorite shop you found on the list (other than your own, of course). 

Etsy Wednesdays




TIME TO JOIN THE ETSY MADNESS....

Tuesday, March 13, 2012

Inspiring My Son to Create

micro origami crane by Dwayne
I was hanging out on Pinterest one night and had a chance to show my oldest son some of the cool origami creations I found there. He's been into origami for years and has come up with his own dragon design. First I showed him some really complicated origami creations, but it was some miniature paper cranes in a glass bottle that ended up catching his eye.  That brought on our first ever mother and son trip to the craft store.

This is not the son I usually pal around with. He's very geeky (even more than me) and is into Magic the Gathering rather than beadwork and crafting. Going to the craft store was fun and he soon gathered the supplies he needed. He got right to work as soon as we got home. In order to fit the cranes in the glass bottle, he had to make them micro sized. Yes, that's a real penny underneath that teeny tiny crane.

He filled the glass bottle with six miniature cranes and then hung the bottle from a necklace cord. It was cute to see him work so hard on it and then anxiously wait for me to add it to our Etsy shop. Interestingly enough, his necklace was viewed 13 times in the first 45 minutes and it was listed in a new treasury within two minutes of being listed.

Origami Cranes in Glass Bottle

Today I saw a great article about how your kids can help you with your Etsy business. Getting your whole family involved in the business can prevent you from burning out. Having the support without feeling separated from your family will keep you going strong. I've also found that fun new ideas can come from all over, even from your kids.

Have you involved your kids in your creating yet?

Wednesday, March 7, 2012

Etsy Wednesday Promote Your Shop Linky Party #37

Welcome to ETSY WEDNESDAY!
ratty daddy dinkum
With a name like Ratty Daddy Dinkum, how could I resist? Their Etsy shop with handmade scarves and more was my featured pick from last week's party. Run by a mother and daughter out of Florida, this shop has some fun vintage picks as well as scrappy felt flowers and the scrappy scarves they've become known for. 

Make sure you link up to the party.  You could be the featured shop next week.

Other linky parties say "NO Etsy shops" but we say YES!!  Here's your chance to market or promote your online store for FREE.  Once you link up your shop, don't forget to spread the word to other sellers as well as your friends who are in the mood for shopping.  Don't worry, you can still link up even if you're on Artfire, Zibbet, 1000 Markets, Folksy, etc.  Wondering what a Linky Party is or how it works?  Read this explanation for help.

Etsy Wednesday Linky Party Guidelines
  • Remember to visit other shops on the list.
  • Because this is promoting Etsy shops, I'm not going to require that you add my blog button to your shop (it's not possible anyway).  However, I'm hoping you will see it in your heart to add my button to your blog; stay connected to me on Facebook, Twitter, or my RSS feed; and/or promote this link party in your own way.  
  • Share this blog post however you can.  We want as many people as possible to look at your shops. 
  • Leave a comment telling the favorite shop you found on the list (other than your own, of course). 

Etsy Wednesdays





TIME TO JOIN THE ETSY MADNESS....

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