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Wednesday, December 30, 2015

It's been a gem!


New prints for a new year..
I've loved 2015! As with any year, it's had its set backs but on the whole, it's been a gem! One of the highlights for me was to finally open an Etsy shop, make some sales and find my way around over there. It's still a work in progress but I'm so looking forward to 2016 and making some new things.

How was this year for you and what are you looking forward to in the next? I hope you have a fantastic new year's eve and wish you a happy, healthy and successful 2016!

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Forest & Sea ▪ www.etsy.com/shop/ForestAndSea
hand drawn nature on fabric, accessories & homeware

Wednesday, December 23, 2015

Featured in the Etsy Seller Handbook!

Hello there! I was so excited to be asked to contribute to an article for the Etsy Seller Handbook this month! Audrey from Etsy's Seller Educational Editorial Team wanted to include some tips on Instagram in her upcoming article 'How 4 Sellers Achieved Their Goals in 2015'. The article, which you can read here, includes some quotes from me as well as Marla Mrowka, Lauren Fairweather and Tiffany Whipps; or below you can read through my answers to Audrey's questions in full!
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As a relatively new seller, what made you focus early on building a social media following?
   
My aim was to build up a collection of designs and product ideas that I loved before opening my Etsy shop and I’ve really enjoyed using social media as a sounding board to help with this. I write a blog as well as having Instagram, Pinterest, Twitter and Facebook accounts and interacting with other sellers this way has been invaluable for me to find out all I needed to learn to start selling online.

How did you start building your following? What are your favorite things to photograph and share? (I noticed a cute cat!)
   
Instagram is such a great community of friendly, supportive and creative people, many of whom are makers and artists themselves. My first posts on Instagram were made to take part in group hashtag projects and that’s how I gained my first few followers. I loved seeing other people’s work, what they were making, how they styled their product shots and it was very encouraging to get feedback on my pictures too.
   
I concentrate my posts on my work and local surroundings but I’ve found that the most popular images are usually behind the scenes or work in progress pictures - especially if it’s something really hands-on like block printing. Oh, and people also love to see a furball friend if you have one!

What tip do you have for others looking to build a social media following? 
   
Use relevant tags on your posts and join in with social hashtag challenges in the subjects that interest you. Treat people on Instagram as you would any friend: answer their comments, be involved and tell them if you like what they’re working on (there is so much inspirational talent!). Be open about your work, challenges and progress and you’ll find a supportive and constructive community of fellow makers and future customers! Most of all, be patient; it can take time to reach people who are genuinely interested in the work you do.

How has building followers on Instagram positively affected your shop (this doesn't have to be in terms of sales. It could be by making you more confident, for example).
   
Instagram can be a brilliant promotional tool and it has definitely generated traffic to my Etsy shop - my most recent sale was made just ten minutes after posting the product on Instagram. The feedback I’ve had from followers has also been really useful as market research; taking note of how many likes each picture gets on Instagram has helped me choose between products and new directions to take as well as more practical things like which photo to use as the main listing image. I hope that I’ve been of similar use to the artists and makers I follow too!

"Cally often shares images of her work, local surroundings and process on her brand’s Instagram account. 'People also love to see a furball friend if you have one!' she says. Photos by Forest & Sea"
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Forest & Sea ▪ www.etsy.com/shop/ForestAndSea
hand drawn nature on fabric, accessories & homeware

Monday, November 16, 2015

Galapagos Gold Squashy





Hello, I hope you're well! Here are some of the things I've been working on so far this month.. from the top:
~ Packing up an order for the shop (!!!) - Galapagos sea lion cotton
~ New listing - blackbird gift tags with hand painted gold
~ Newest listing - 100% linen, soft, squashy Christmas tree decorations!

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Forest & Sea ▪ www.etsy.com/shop/ForestAndSea
hand drawn nature on fabric, accessories & homeware

Friday, November 6, 2015

Elaboration..

Some screenshots from the 'about' section at the Forest & Sea Etsy shop:

a photo of my sunny workroom with superimposed logo, birds + bees...

..woodblock prints pegged out to dry in our city centre (read tiny!) garden...

..and the drawing of Bruges from the medieval woodcut pattern, here superimposed on a photo of Bruges; Bruges on Bruges!

There are still two image spaces on the about section for me to add to; what do you like to know about the person you buy handmade from? Suggestions are very welcome - leave a comment below if you like :)

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Forest & Sea ▪ www.etsy.com/shop/ForestAndSea
hand drawn nature on fabric, accessories & homeware

Saturday, October 24, 2015

Online shop!


I've added some zipped pouches, gift tags and fabric to the new Forest & Sea Etsy shop! Click here to head on over and have a rummage :)

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Forest & Sea ▪ www.etsy.com/shop/ForestAndSea
hand drawn nature on fabric, accessories & homeware
  

Thursday, October 22, 2015

~[tagged]

... and the last Instagram round up: ~[tags] These are good fun to make - as you can tell :)




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Forest & Sea ▪ www.etsy.com/shop/ForestAndSea
hand drawn nature on fabric, accessories & homeware
  

Wednesday, October 21, 2015

♫ Tweet ♫

More Instagram posts! Just click on the title under each image if you're interested to read more:



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Forest & Sea ▪ www.etsy.com/shop/ForestAndSea
hand drawn nature on fabric, accessories & homeware
  

Tuesday, October 20, 2015

Ink!

Hello! To catch up here with some of the projects I've been working on over the last few months, here are some photos from my Instagram page. Just click on the title below each picture and it'll take you straight to the post if you'd like to read more about it :)




Handmade Handles | Birds & Bees

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Forest & Sea ▪ www.etsy.com/shop/ForestAndSea
hand drawn nature on fabric, accessories & homeware
  

Monday, August 24, 2015

Six months!

Six months since my last blog post! I'm posting to Instagram regularly if you'd like to have a look and say hello - I will also be updating here more often but here are some of the things I've been working on:

Woodblock prints on canvas for these pouches.

Working on photos and packaging for the new online shop.

Enjoying the beautiful summer weather we've been having this year!

I hope you've been enjoying the summer (or looking forward to it, some of you) too :)

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Forest & Sea ▪ www.etsy.com/shop/ForestAndSea
hand drawn nature on fabric, accessories & homeware
  

Tuesday, February 24, 2015

Slow - Busy - Slow

As I mentioned a few posts ago, I'm working on starting a shop over at Etsy. It's taking much longer than I thought it would - there are so many things, for both production and admin, that I need to research and am doing for the first time - but I'm working hard at it and I hope to open soon!

Motifs for the shop banner & cotton panels in the dye pot.
Clockwise: Sparrow - Palace Garden - Butterfly & Bloom zipped pouches!

I'm impatient to open and send off some goodies! Are you the same as me? Do things take longer than you think they will?

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Forest & Sea ▪ www.etsy.com/shop/ForestAndSea
hand drawn nature on fabric, accessories & homeware
  
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