A few weeks ago via my etsy account, I received an email from a woman who expressed interest in selling my goods at her shop in Newburyport, MA. I, of course, was elated by this email, but quickly checked myself because of the many stories you hear about people who have screwed or taken advantage of. So, I did a little research on-line and discovered that I was being invited by a completely legit shop who had good press. Sisters We Three opened last April and sells only handmade goods and many of their artisans are local. In the midst of coordinating a showing with one of the three sisters, I made a covert trip to Newburyport to check out the shop in person. It is located on the corner of Pleasant Street and was really lovely. It was filled with an amazing range of goods. It was hard not to audibly 'oohhh' and 'ahh'!
During this time, I was also busy at home crafting and creating. For etsy, I typically make one or two of one object. I knew that I would need at least five examples of each piece that I presented. Well, that posed a hurdle for me. Knitting is not exactly a fast craft. I decided to limit myself to the cotton wash cloths in terms of new materials. Thankfully hats and scarves are off season! In addition, I wanted to bring my fabric flower hair pins, mini pins, baby barrettes, and T-Shirts. I was pretty stressed about all that I had to do. And then it rained. And rained. And rained. I was given the gift of two no-school days because of flooding, and let me tell you, I used them!
This is what I looked like this morning before I left. Knitting and crafting is something that I do by myself. I am not a part of a stitch 'n' bitch or a knitting circle or a crafting club, I give my wares as gifts and people always say that they are fond of them, but we all know that they have to say that! So, I was mostly nervous about my work being judged. And judged negatively. When I arrived, I was greeted warmly by
Leslie who showed me where to lay out my goods and that the sisters would be with me shortly. And they were lovely. Kind and business savvy and complimentary. I immediately calmed. And then it just became fun. They offered me a contract and accepted almost all of my goods with the exception of my baby barrettes (there was another artisan who sold something very similar). The only downfall was that they asked about my tutus and I didn't have any examples of them!!!! D'oh! I could have kicked myself. I agreed that I would bring some back before the end of the week.
Right now I am feeling excited, but still a bit overwhelmed. I don't have enough back-up inventory, so I still have some crafting to do. Part of me was looking forward to coming home and reclaiming my house from the giant craft room that it has become. But, more than anything I feel validated. Sometimes when you say that you knit or craft or sell on etsy people don't think much of it. Today I felt like I was taken seriously, and that was pretty great!