As part of an ongoing series, we will ask all of our team members to answer 10 questions about themselves and their shops. This way, we’ll get to know one another a little bit better and perhaps pick up a great tip or two! I will personally aim to post these out every Wednesday around noon, so look out for some questions in your inbox and the posts to appear here. For those amongst you who are shy – don’t worry. It’s not compulsory to take part, nor do you have to send in any pictures if you don’t want to.
[If you are on Team Etsy Cambridge and want to be part of this series, just fill out the questions – and perhaps add an image or two – and send them over to me on Etsy (Y. Bessels / 1000crows) or on Facebook (Yvette Bessels). I’ll add them to the scheduled waiting list.]
1. What’s your name?
Melanie Pearson, everyone calls me Mel.
2. What’s your shop name?
Little Gems by Mel but I call it simply ‘Little Gems’.
3. How did you choose your shop name?
I chose my shop name years ago when I had the pipe dream of a crafty style shop, after a walking holiday in the lakes. It’s taken me a while to realise it!
4. What do you sell?
I sell hand crafted jewellery, mostly made with semi precious beads, pearls, glass, cord and leather. Quite a boho style.
5. How did you decide to do this?
I’ve always crafted from a very early age, whether it’s knitting, crochet, sewing, drawing or even mosaics! I got into beading when I discovered an amazing bead shop whilst on holiday in Turkey and thought ‘I can do that!’ As soon as I got back I enrolled on some courses to learn from the experts and have been hooked ever since. I love making my pieces and get a real buzz from people buying and wearing each piece!
6. What do you love most about your products?
The best thing I love about my pieces are the originality, no piece is exactly the same and you cannot find that in mainstream retail outlets. I like to be different…
7. Which of your products are bestselling or most popular?
Best selling items are definitely my bracelets.
8. What were your biggest challenges in opening / running an online shop?
The biggest challenge for setting up my Etsy shop was getting to grips with the photos, descriptions and tags, especially when first listing a completely new item – this needs time and consideration to get right.
9. What are your wishes for your shop – are there products you’d like to add or any favourite shops whose success you’d like to achieve?
I feel my shop is always progressing, who knows how it will look a year from now. Hopefully I will have refined it to ensure each piece has earned its rightful place. I would love to have more regular sales too, which is probably everyone’s wish for their own shop! I always feel inspired by the uk Etsy shop MirasBeadBoutique.
10. What would be your golden tip for opening and running an Etsy Shop? And you cannot say having great pictures 😉
My one tip is be patient and do not lose your enthusiasm when starting up your shop. Success is not instant and often the result of very hard work and lots of offline activity too! I find it is a great reference tool for my regular local customers.