The California Crafters Club of Etsy (CCCOE) is a group of independent artists, crafters, & artisans from California who sell their wares on

Tuesday, April 29, 2008


Picture: bethela (Beth), oishiiknits (Erika), bemidesigns (Christie), handcranked (Robyn), curbsidetreasure (Annie), theseawithin (Nadine), 2inspire (Eleanor), localcolorist (Nancy)

Meetings and the Web 2.0 Expo brought me out to San Francisco last week, which also gave me a chance to sit down with some of the members of the SF Bay Area Etsy Team and the California Crafters Club of Etsy (CCCOE) teams. We met at the Ferry Building, also the home of the farmers market, outside of Peet’s Coffee for an early morning chat. A random woman, who did not know of Etsy (or any of us) joined in. Turns out she designs shoes and localcolorist gave her the hard pitch to start selling her designs on Etsy!

I had checked out these sellers' shops before I got there, so I knew this was a very talented group. But when I met them, I found that not only were they passionate about their own work, but also the work of other Etsy sellers. Many talked about helping other sellers get started and what they learned from other sellers along the way. They were also brimming with ideas, outlined below:

  • Ways to promote/highlight a sale in shophandcranked suggested it would be great to have a way conduct a sale in your shop – either all items or a part of a shop, without having to re-enter all the prices in the shop. Also suggested:
    • A way to easily shop sales, a promotional area where buyers will be likely to find it (probably unlikely buyers are in the forums).
    • Alerts when an item or a shop in your favorites has a sale.
    • Promo codes – ability to conduct sales with promo codes, to track where people are coming from.
    • Ability to shop sales by price range
  • More Offline Teams Events – Encourage teams to have more face-to-face interactions and partner with local artistic museums, shows, etc. It is great for sharing ideas and promoting Etsy in the offline world.
  • Etsy-sponsored live events – Sponsored events across the country for sellers to come together and learn new skills and share ideas.
  • Sort favorites – The group was in agreement that sorting favorites will make shopping much easier, driving increased sales.
  • Ability to adjust for sales tax – Option to clearly state relevant taxes for specific items or specific states in the checkout process. Some items require taxes, some only require taxes in some states, etc.
  • More ways to help and welcome newcomers to Etsy – Some thought Etsy can be overwhelming to some at first. Here are some suggestions to make learning how to use Etsy easier:
    • Step-by-step instructions to use the site – Create a “how-to” that is easy for a new buyer or seller to find and easy for someone to direct a new person to. “The site can be intimidating to a lot of people at first.”
    • FAQs on the top navigation bar
    • Glossary – a list of “Etsy” terms for newbies and not so newbies
  • Treasury notification – ability to opt in to get notified when you have been included in a treasury
  • Favorites for forum threads - Easily keep track of threads that you may not have anything to contribute to but want to save.

All in all, a great discussion. So here's a little about the sellers. Localcolorist, formerly a stage set designer (sounds like a fun job!) now makes delicate orgami birds. Bemidesigns has a few businesses; she makes hemp jewelry, sells supplies in her withlovedesigns shop and has a letterpress business. Inspired by her twin sister, 2inspire creates cards and stationary. As a complement to this business, she also uses her own style of calligraphy to address invitations, tags, etc. Both Bemidesigns (letterpress) and 2inspire (cards and calligraphy) have seen a dramatic increase in sales after the handmade wedding series.

Below we have theseawithin modeling a quilted neck warmer/cowl designed by French designer malam.

I can see why she owns three of these unique neck warmers. Theseawithin was also sporting a screenprinted wallet by quietdoing handmade.

Theseawithin is talented in her own right, creating great bags. She is looking forward to teaming up with her sister who is a screenprint designer and use the screenprinted fabric designs for her bags.

Handcranked, modeling a screenprinted shirt by avalove, recently opened her shop and is full-time designing after leaving her job as a copy writer for an advertising agency at the end of last year.

Handcranked designs silver jewelry and her designs were recently discovered by a magazine through her flickr stream. You never know where people will find you!

Curbsidetreasure design mixed media collages and even brought her collage journal with her.

Above, curbsidetreasure is showing us her tote made by maryink.

Oishiiknits (oishii means delicious in Japanese) is also a new seller on Etsy. She is currently in design school and has lots of artistic projects on her plate. Here she is showing all of us her adorable knitted baby hats.

A close-up of her hats — I love all the bright colors.

It was a great conversation. I got lots of ideas not only for Etsy, but for my own personal shopping (this could be dangerous). Thank you to all the sellers who came out to share their personal experiences.

Sunday, April 27, 2008

Patchwork Fair Next Sunday May 4th

If you are in the area come out and meet some CCCOE members at this fair. It is a great fair at A Road Less Traveled Store in Santa Ana. There will be fun music, bag and button making, raising money for a charity, food, and loads of great shopping. Photobucket From CCCOE you can see: (If I missed anyone please comment and add your name!) Yolanda's Clay Chocolate and Steel Deidre Ryan Photography Porterness Claydame Wumpus

Saturday, April 26, 2008




Can You Identify These Lovely People?? :)

O.K. - we have one identification - Nancy, LocalColorist on the far right! WhooHoo!!

Anyone else?


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Tuesday, April 22, 2008

SHOUT OUT TO: QuirkynBerkeley

Congratulations to our very own QuirkynBerkeley, for being accepted in the 1000 Handmade Cards book project by Rockport Publishers/Quarry Books. The entry required submitting beautiful examples of handmade greeting cards for which Carol is know for!

Carol responded to the request to share with us just how she got started working with paper items and what she attributed to her success.

I've been doing this for over ten years, now. I chose paper because I've loved playing with paper since I was a little girl. My house is filled with it, not only for cardmaking, but for bookmaking, boxmaking, and of course I've played with making my own. I love it in the form of printed books and I have four file cabinets full of it in my apartment in addition to my studio. Paper is one of the most brilliant inventions in history - the written word provides humans with a way of speaking across time and space. It can be used in an almost infinite number of ways. There are thousands of different kinds. It is portable and versatile.

I had worked with paper, or rather with printing, for 20 years in major metropolitan newspaper newsrooms, using computer-based graphic design. Due to illness, I was no longer able to do that, but I found I could still emulate the printing process by using rubber stamps. I found card blanks quite by accident in a hobby shop, and I've been making all sorts of cards since then. As I learned new techniques, I was able to create cards that delighted my friends. These days, I spend a lot of time on the computer as a writer and researcher, and enjoy making cards because it is something that draws from the other side of my brain. I LOVE sitting in my card-making chair in my studio and dreaming up my next set of cards. I think that is what keeps me going. It's doing something that regularly turns out good results and occasionally turns up something that I think is really beautiful or very original or that clicks just right.

I think the first tenet of success is showing up every day. I list at least once a day on Etsy, sometimes twice. I've worked hard to move from scanner-based images of cards in my shop to taking good photos. My street teams, but especially CCCOE have been crucial to the success I've enjoyed on Etsy. As far as cardmaking goes, I also try to show up every day, and to make something I would love to receive and fill my shop with those as much as I'm able.

I spend several hours in the forums or chat rooms most days and set goals about how many hearts I try to earn every day, which I equate with some unknown but relatively constant number of visitors to my shop every day. I also try hard to be a positive contributor to the forums rather than a complainer, and to help people learn their way around the site.

You can find Carol/s etsy store at:


Wednesday, April 16, 2008

Etsy Front Page Treasury

Front pager! Originally uploaded by Combustion Glassworks Curated by Nancy There are a bunch of CCCOE members in here!

Tuesday, April 15, 2008


3 Winning Tips - How To Boost Sales on the Internet
Part 1 of 3by Nina Danza, http://www.prettycheapjewelry.comSales are tough, especially for handmade jewelry! Lots of folks enjoy crafting, and most everyone seems to try their hand at it. But the internet is tough for everyone! Just ask the card makers, soap shops, fabric artisans and knitters. (Ok, forget the soap shops, right Dennis?).

So how can you compete? I've had recent sales from no and low cost promotions and am going to tip you off!

Item sold to blog reader

1. Join Some Groups. There are loads of internet groups are out there of every imaginable subject. The trick is finding the group that defines your market!!! It would be exhausting and unrewarding to post blatantly anywhere so if you make baby clothes, join some mommy groups! If you make dog treats, join the pet lovers groups! Look in yahoo, google, myspace, and flickr for starters. I choose not to sing to the choir, so I joined a frugal living, money saving tip group. This suited me to a ‘T’ since some of my biggest thrills are picking up coins on the sidewalk. Ahem, at first I was just active with their forum, but not long after began my blog there (little did I know the readership is hugely loyal and I get an insane number of hits when I post. And even if I don’t post. You wouldn’t believe it, absolutely insane.) NOW YOU’RE COOKING: After you join a group, customize your signature to include your shop link and avatar.

It takes time and a sharp thinking cap to find your target market, but worth it. Develop a relationship with the group and if the group policy is for discussion, just discuss! You love what you do so it will be a pleasure to blab away. It won’t take long for your audience to know you make ‘X’ and will click around and look. If the group is for sales, that’s ok, but be sure to check the group’s messages before joining. It’s unpleasant to belong to groups spammed with get rich quick schemes and pornographic posts to say the least (yuck). NOW YOU’RE COOKING: A good website to check out is a free ad website with a very supportive group of moderators and forums.

2.Post on Other Blogs and News Articles. Did you realize that every time you make a comment on someone else’s blog that your signature is clickable? Take the plunge and look for your market. Those baby clothes customers are probably hanging out in family sites like and in teaching or school groups. I have made posts months ago that still get clicks. NOW YOU’RE COOKING: Another one to try which is huge and NOT filled with Etsyians is a social networking site.

3. Google Alert yourself. Now that you have joined some groups and are posting away in the cosmos, watch where folks are finding you. Go to and put in your name (with quotes) like “pretty cheap jewelry”. Do several google alerts if you use different names (I do prettycheap and as well). You will be rewarded with more insight than money can buy (at least that’s my frugal moneysaving take on it). I learned about this from Nancy, THANKS!

Coming Soon! 3 Winning Tips - How To Boost Sales on the Internet - Part 2 of 3


April Design Competition Theme is "Holy Guacamole! California Celebrates Cinco de Mayo!"

Items will need to be tagged CCCOE and aprilchallenge(one word) so that we can find them and make a list of them. Deadline for entry is midnight (Pacific Time) April 30.

Voting will take place the first week of May, just in time for Cinco de Mayo. Any member shop can enter, and shops which the owner lives in Calfornia can become a member. When you're ready, copy and paste your item to the following list:

Saturday, April 12, 2008


First place: Black Cat and a Blood Moon by MaidofClay
Second place: Large Sunface filigree suncatcher by Oceankisses AND
Chupacabra by slurkgirl
Third place: 1692 Bridget Bishop Witch Charm Necklace by PalleikoDesigns


Saturday, April 5, 2008


TOP PHOTO: ElenaMary CENTER PHOTO: (l to r) creativemuse(Stacy),annikdesigns(Annie)

The Artisan Af-FAIR held 4/5/08 was a modest success!
Our vendors averaged $100 sales each (mind you this is an
AVERAGE!!!). There were 5 booths and a small but steady stream of
customers starting from 9am.

Most importantly, we very very very much enjoyed each other's
company. Swapped thoughts about the group, past present and future.

SWEET of Redbessbonney to visit all the way from LA!

Other than a few episodes of wind, the weather co-operated,
refreshments were enjoyed, and the boom box kept upbeat.

THANK YOU to my sellers for a very positive experience!

Friday, April 4, 2008


Yahoo Group: IMPORTANT - Please join the yahoo group for event announcements, monthly newsletter, business tips, selling tips and more important stuff: Yahoo group Co-Moderators: Tami ~ Nina ~ ------------------------------------------- CCCOE Blog: Team Blog Co-Chairs: Corline ~ Amanda ~ ------------------------------------------- Flickr Group: Flickr group manager: Jenny ~ ------------------------------------------- Myspace Group: ------------------------------------------- Indiepublic Group: WeLoveEtsy Network and Promo Group: Site Manager: Deirdre ~ -------------------------------------------

Thursday, April 3, 2008

SF BAY AREA CCCOE'rs first meet-up

SF Bay Area CCCOE'rs had their first meet-up, Saturday, March 29, 2008. Wrenay Charlton of supplied us with the following update of the meeting. They had about 10 members show up during our 2 hour time frame. Theew was much chatter about our stores, interests, and just general information. There were a few non-members who hopefully will decide to join our group.

They all agreed they would like to have a monthly meeting to build our network and discuss other marketing opportunities. We would also like to use these times to trade materials, supplies, etc. Every quarter we would like to get together for a workshop on different art/craft techniques that would be run by a fellow etsy member.

Several of us plan to attend the Maker Fair/Bizzare Bazaar May 3rd & 4th. So if anyone wants to carpool, perhaps it can be worked out closer to the event. Also, Annie from was selected to participate in the Bazaar. She will be sharing a table with Congrats to Annie!

Stephanie from volunteered to have a Post-Maker Fair get together at her house-details to follow.

It was really great to have such a big turn-out! I volunteered to plan the meeting for next month, which will also be a location close to BART.

Photos from our meeting can be seen at the Yahoo Group page.


Upcoming Fairs --- Check these out!

April 5: Artisan Af-FAIR this Saturday! Come meet 5 CCCOE’ers in Ventura. Convo Nina, for directions. May 3: Garden Grove event. Space is free and still available but hurry-deadline to apply is 4/7! Or share with Ocean Avenue Silks and Red Bess Bonney. All items for sale must be $50 or under. If you would like to apply or send sale/promo items, contact (Eva). August 9: Etsy CCCOE Los Angeles (title to be announced) Juried Home Show (this date could change if there is a conflicting craft fair) 4pm - 10pm Culver City, CA Live music/Refreshments $40 Participant Fee (before May 15th) $50 Participant Fee (after May 15th) Submissions Not Accepted After June 30th We have 20 spots available. 3 Spaces - Jewelry 3 Spaces - Clothing/Accessories 4 Spaces - Fine Art/Photography 5 Spaces - Housewares/Bath/Gift items 5 Spaces - Contemporary Craft (ceramics, fibers, metalwork, wood) For further questions please contact: Heather of PalleikoDesigns Sandy of SandySimone Amanda of AmandaKLockrowJewels

Treasury Sales --

Treasury/Sale Study: Our PR committee is developing a study to track sales from treasuries. If you make a treasury which results in a sale (or if you are in a treasury and get a sale from it), please contact with the info.

CCCOE AVATAR --- A big thank you to Wrenay!

Special Thank You to wrenay for giving us 4 avatar clip arts (in the style of our official logo the ‘bear’) posted in the yahoo group in the Photo Album-Logo. You can use these anywhere on your promo materials.

Wednesday, April 2, 2008


It's time to begin working on your entry for the April challenge --"Holy Guacamole! California Celebrates Cinco de Mayo!" Items will need to be tagged CCCOE aprilchallenge (one word) so that we can find them and make a list of them. Deadline for entry is midnight (Pacific time) April 30. Voting will take place the first week of May, just in time for Cinco de Mayo. You may or may not know the true meaning of this usually raucous holiday. It celebrates the successful resistance of the Zapotec and Mestizo indians to the French attempt to install Napoleon's nephew as the ruler of Mexico. After having ousted the Spanish they just weren't having it any more, wouldn't you want to party too?! The historical bond that California shares with Mexico is undeniable. This month let's put our party hats on and celebrate the strength, bravery and general refusal to be pushed around that marks this event! One entry per shop please. When you have your entry listed, please post its title, YOUR SHOP NAME and a link to the entry in the April Challenge thread (watch Yahoo for thread link). Please copy those already listed and add yours to the bottom of the list.

Let The Excitement Begin! The Voting Has Begun!

CCCOE March Challenge - Make Your Vote Count for "Witchy Women: Heroines, Heretics and Whores"

Now it is your turn to judge which one of the entries is the best. Polls open until midnight Monday, April 7. All voters will receive 10% off in the list of participating shops AND a spot in one of our treasuries during the same period.

Here is the list of entrants, or you can click on this link to see them all in one place 1. Wisteria the Witch..she is pretty but deadly, just like the flower. by crazyartdolls 2. Gloriana by RedBessBonney 3. Black Cat and a Blood Moon by MaidofClay 4. Shades of Mae West by Ohmay 5. 'bitch is the new black' by littlepurls 6. Medusa by hollylynne 7. Large Sunface filigree suncatcher by Oceankisses 8. little broom and witchcraft by lilumi 9. Wild Old Woman by QuirkynBerkeley (read the listing) 10. I Know... by katilady 11. Dorothy Tell It Like It IS by peggradyart 12. Annies Queens by Heartfulart 13. About Her I by whimsy 14. The White Witch of the Ice Forest choker/necklace by cigarboxbeads 15. Selflessness Apricot Topaz and Freshwater Pearl Earrings by prettycheap 16. 1692 Bridget Bishop Witch Charm Necklace by PalleikoDesigns 17. Sunglass Witch of Philly-CCCOE March Challenge OOAK 18. Something to Hypnotize the Boys with a Surly Wrap Around Chain with a Third Eye In Honor of all the Witchy California Women 19.Magdalena Carmen Frida Kahlo Calderon Bag by arttoweardiva 20. Indian Princess by mariejulie 21. Diva Devine a doll book by ElenaMary 22. Witchy Woman Silk Scarf by oceanavesilks 23. Sea Witch Scarf by phydeaux 24. bOOberella by VisionQuest 25. Jezebel, Trollop and Whore, Oh My. Cards. by LiSoCards 26. Hester Gillespie, the Amazing Hoot Owl 27. Don't Hate Me Because I'm Beautiful by HeArt Collective 28. Prepare to Battle by luchi 29.Chupacabra by slurkgirl 30. Goody Prudence was a Witch by TresLocas 31. Luna the moon goddess necklace by AlliesAdornments 32. Marie Curie, One of My Heroines by anniekdesigns 33. The queens CROWN soldered glass pendant by DesignsbyTami 34. Confident Madam Crafted Traditions Necklace by AmandaK LockrowJewels 35. Alphonse Maria Mucha Woman Origami Peace Crane Ornament by Nancy McNally aka localcolorist 36. Veneno Helleborus Lividus by Tresijas 37. Fingerless Gloves for Sister Wendy by shellmitchell 38. Miranda by tangocatgems Each voter is eligible for a 10% discount off entire purchase from the following shops during the week of April 1 through 7. We will also feature voters in a treasury. We cannot notify you individually due to site rules, but start looking for the CCCOE treasuries starting on April 1. Keep your eyes on this list as more shops may be added during the week of voting.