Monday, December 10, 2007

You know what?

Best Friends
Originally uploaded by m.Lee
This is something that has building for awhile but I have been keeping it to myself. But I just can't.

My husband needs a winter hat. Instead of heading off to the Gap I suggested he look on Etsy since there are so many people that knit on the site and I have seen many lovely knitted items. For women. But there has to be items for men? Just search for men right? Still mostly women's hats. Okay try using the suggested men NOT women in the search, still mostly hats for women. Oh and when I told him that Etsy titles and tags can't include symbols like an apostrophe he laughed.

Guess who will be stopping by the Gap after all? So there goes the whole Handmade Pledge bullshit. My handmade gifts will most likely be made by me or be bought from sellers I already know because I don't have an hour or two to wade through the search.

Etsy has been a pretty good place for me to start back on art after too many years away from it but with the direction it is heading I really would like to move on. But two years on the site feels like such a long time. I'm not planning on closing up, just not have it be my focus. I am just not thinking it is really the right venue for artists such as myself. And it is getting harder and harder to be seen on the site without paying for it or doing a ton of outside advertising which I hardly have the time for. It really is so much work for so little. Frankly I have gotten quite burnt out from working full time hours for part time pay.

Sometimes I feel that I am too old and too unhip to be focused on that site. I don't have a ton of free time to persue the other venues that are opening up to me but things will work out in the end. It isn't just Etsy that I am burnt out on honestly, online art selling in general has made me quite tired. It is not like I am running off to Mintd or Ebay. (I have a Mintd account but while I have sold the one item I listed there I just haven't had the energy to explore it and I probably never will)

Of course having a baby hasn't exactly helped.

Again, not closing my shop. Just not stressing it and planning on focusing on smaller and less expensive pieces for Etsy while I look at other venues outside the internet. Not good to put all your eggs in one basket right?

I don't know, I needed an image and somehow this one seemed to fit since I didn't want to show another image of my disgruntled face. Especially since I am actually in a perfectly good mood.


b'oki. said...

gosh, i think you've done quite well. i'm intrigued with this online selling though i haven't entered it yet, but i think its the answer to business parents who have young children. if you were to sell locally, you'd be in the car and on the phone constantly i think. marketing is a tough nut, but you are definitely tougher :)

m.Lee said...

It isn't bad, but it isn't easy for sure. There is so much networking that you have to do online to stay on top or even in the middle. Did you know that I have four blogs that all have the same content? Just so I can reach as many people as possible. I used to have more but I ditched Myspace at the beginning of the year.

I do okay but certainly not well enough to make a dent in our Boston mortgage.

Again, not stopping online, I just want to spread myself out a bit.

b'oki. said...

sorry to leave another comment. you should get those Etsy people to crochet/knit caps for men as well. but then alot of home-crafted items aren't geared toward men because men don't need them, carry them, or want them. at least that's what i've experienced. although, the t-shirt business at Etsy seems to be booming. i've been thinking about printing on t-shirts just to target men as well.

b'oki. said...

yah, i can only imagine how hard it is. 4 blogs is crazy but probably necessary. but there's got to be an easier way to market, especially now that blee is here. Maria Arango would know the answer! she's a marketing Saint :) heck, she's managed to get her woodcut images on the sides of city buses!!! i challenge YOU, Marissa, to do that in Boston! better hurry before someone else sees this :) your images ROCK.

m.Lee said...

It is more than just a problem with them not having much. It is a problem with women's hats being tagged men and therefore coming up in searches.

I find searching on the site for something new to be incredibly frustrating. I buy either from shops I already know or from people I see on the homepage. Even the baby category which is relatively small is difficult. The idea of searching for jewelry makes my head explode.

b'oki. said...

i agree. i've experienced Esty searching to be frustrating. it would help if sellers would choose better descriptions for their items. i'm also not sure if the process of searching titles and/or descriptions is the answer.

m.Lee said...

One of the biggest problems with the search is mistagging and tag bleedover. But neither issue has been handled in the past year.

Searching in Knitting for "hat men not women" I came up with this hat that my husband would just love.

If he was a transvestite.

The Aesthetic Elevator said...

I think my wife has a mens hat, but it isn't in her store right now that I can tell ( Send her a message maybe and see if I'm not making it up in my head :p Course, sizing over the internet is no fun . . .

b'oki. said...

do you see any here that he would wear?

The Flying Ewe and Pamela Jean have a couple of promising male knitted hats.

m.Lee said...

Thanks for the hat links, there were some that I liked a bit. But him and I have pretty different taste in that kind of thing.

But it all mute at this point anyhow since I found his old hat. Plus he has a hard to fit (large) head so buying online probably wouldn't be the best idea for him.

It would be fine for me, but I have a hat that I like.