The old adage “Time flies when you’re having fun” couldn’t be more true. I was at my sewing machine today, whipping up some tees, when I realized we started our little corner on Etsy one year ago this month. A year! Already????
I opened my shop because my dolls had too many clothes. You see, I had been sewing for them non-stop for several months. It was great entertainment and brought me so much pleasure. But really, how many outfits does one doll need? I really didn’t want to stop sewing. I was loving the creative outlet. The dolls were wild about every outfit I made. I was having too much fun!
To alleviate the guilt of buying yet more fabric for clothes to add to their crammed closet, I opened an Etsy Shop. I talked Robert into taking a few pictures, and off I went. Now, if this was really going to be a cover-up…..cough, cough….I mean, business , I’d better start acting the part, after all, Robert is not easily fooled. Better yet, I needed to “fool” myself into thinking this was all legitimate. I attended a few Etsy Labs, listed a few more items and by June I had sold one item.
Then came July! You guys bought 30 items from me! From one to 30 in a flash! I was in business and having a blast! Except, I couldn’t keep up with all the e-mails, shopping, planning, picture taking, listings, mailing, learning AND sewing (I work a real job, too, you know.) I had not planned to make many sales, but here I was on the cusp of being a small business owner. How would I fit all of this into my already busy life? I didn’t want to let this go. I was having too darn much fun!
I talked with Robert and Skylar. I knew they were both excited about my success, but would they be willing to help me? I needed some serious commitments here. I was delighted that they were more than happy to be part of It’s Sew Susan. Robert jumped right in. He immediately took over all the photography and editing, packaging and mailing your orders. Next he started airbrushing beautiful double fairy wings to match our tutus. He also got the idea to silk screen and apply graphics to the tees. In addition, he runs to the fabric store to grab more needles, just the right color thread and has even picked out fabric for us. Skylar started out by making tutus, along side Robert and me. Next, she became the wardrobe manager. She dresses the dolls and does their hair for the photo shoots. In addition, she is taking an online fashion design class. I am excited about her interest in design!
It has been a busy, busy year! We have sent packages to 30 of our 50 states, a US Territory, and Canada. We were featured on Karen Mom of Three Craft Blog in February. Our Scarlett O’Hara dress was featured on a blog in June. In addition to Etsy, we have sold 18” doll clothes at Farmer’s Markets and Craft Fairs. Did I say we’ve been busy?
What does our second year of business have in store for us? I have created a few of my own designs, which will soon be listed on Etsy. We will also expand this blog to include fun dolly crafts and projects for you and the kids to make for your dolls. We are also going to be refurbishing some American Girl dolls and selling them. AND….drum roll, please…..We are launching our own website THIS Month, to mark our one year anniversary! This has been Robert’s major project. We are expanding our line beyond the limits of “handmade” on Etsy to included many of the fun accessories and dolly toys you see in our pictures. We’ve been shopping and that means lots of surprises for you!
As the year rolls on, we will have more ideas. Our creative juices never stop flowing over here. We hope you are as excited as we celebrate our first year and kick off year number two!