shop . profile . contact
This week's featured shop is OceansideCreations. Amanda is based in Maine, her shop features unique, handcrafted jewelry. Here are some places other than her shop where you can keep track of Amanda: http://twitter.com/OceansideJewlry, http://artist.to/oceansidecreations/, http://oceansidecreations.blogspot.com/
Tell us who you are
My name is Amanda, I'm 25, and I live in Maine. I am a member of the Etsy Maine Team.
Other than creating things for etsy, what do you do?
I am a cook at a local fine dining restaurant where I am the pastry cook, responsible for creating the dessert menu and plating salads and desserts during dinner service.
What first made you want to become an artist?
I have always been creative. Growing up I liked to sew a lot and played around with painting and drawing. I first started making jewelry as a hobby, making things for myself and my friends. This past winter I was unemployed so I had a lot of time to get creative. I made earrings as Christmas presents for all the ladies in my family, and they loved it. My mom encouraged me to open my Etsy shop. I discovered that I really loved making jewelry, discovering new techniques, and materials, and pushing myself to try new things with my work.
Describe your creative process and the materials you use
I don't always know what I am going to make when I sit down to craft. Sometimes I will have an idea or inspiration I am trying to work out, but often I will look at what I have for materials and come up with an idea by seeing what looks right together. I have discovered that I love working with wire and one of my favorite things to make are my wire wrapped sea glass pendants. I love that you can take some wire and a few beads and turn them into something fantastic. I also love to work with pearls. I think they are so simple, but really elegant.
What handmade possession to you prize the most?
I have a beautiful handmade quilt from my grandmother,who recently passed away, that she made for me when I was little. It's really special because I know all the hard work and love she put into it.
Top 5 websites you visit besides etsy?
I like Facebook, Twitter, and Blogger for promoting my work and connecting with friends. Picnic.com is a great free resource for editing photos. And when I'm taking a break I like to watch tv shows on OVGuide.com.
Any advice you have for new etsy users
It can be frustrating when you are new to know that you are working really hard and you have great products and no one is buying. My advice is to stick with it if it's something you really enjoy doing. Keep being creative and keep promoting and sharing your work and eventually you will get sales.
What are your favorite features of etsy, and what new features would you like to see?
I really like that Etsy is such a great supportive community. I like being able to go into the forums with questions I have and generally being able to find the answers there. People on Etsy are really friendly and supportive of each others' success and I think that is great. I would like to see sellers being able to issue coupon codes to their customers and having an easy way to use them during checkout. I feel really unprofessional having someone pay full price for something and having them wait for a refund.
How do you promote your shop/work?
I promote through the forums, through my facebook fan page, and twitter. I recently started a blog which I use to share my work as well as my life behind the scenes. I often offer my facebook fans/blog readers special discounts and do giveaways to thank them for their support.
In ten years, where would you like to be?
I'm engaged so I would like to be married and we are planning a move to the West Coast later this year so hopefully I will be living out there. Kids and a house would be nice too. I would like to be working as a pastry chef or baker and working towards owning a restaurant with my fiance. I would also love to keep working on my jewelry and doing craft fairs a few times a year.
If you would like to be featured, please convo your answers to these questions to Capow on Etsy!