It’s Small Business Saturday y’all! I love that there is a day to celebrate shopping small, though I wish every day were a day to recognize, and make a conscious effort to support small businesses.
Sometimes the products that we sell cost more, because we source our materials differently, trying to ensure they are produced with care or fairly, humanely, that the workers who create them or harvest them are paid a fair wage etc. Sometimes we are making our products by-hand, or making them here in the United States, where labor costs, commercial space, utilities, and the cost-of-living is significantly greater than developing countries, and thus, our products cost more. So if you can still support us with your shopping dollars, we appreciate it!
This holiday season, I am introducing new pieces to the Hieropice product line, Botanical Magnets! They are miniature landscapes designed to attach to any metal surface, and come in a variety of styles. I will have them at my upcoming art markets at the Old South Church Christmas Craft Fair on Saturday, December 3rd, and at the Etsy Artists of Boston chalet at City Hall Plaza December 16th through 22nd. I love making them. Tiny, perfect ecospheres preserved in time. Yay, nature! And yay, handmade!
I’ve been remiss. I know.
It’s so easy to lose track of time, forget to keep up, forget to post!
I’ve been all over the place!
In short, over the past months, I’ve been building Etsy Artists of Boston, our local artists/entrepreneur team, meeting monthly to improve our skills as vendors/artisans and offer each other support. It’s good to have a community that understands the unique thing that you do, and it can be so isolating to be an independent business-person, particularly an artisan, who spends a lot of time working very quietly, very intensely, at a craft, and is ultimately solely responsible for the outcome/success of the work.
I envisioned Etsy Artists of Boston as a community where we could create connections, for those moments when you hit a roadblock in your work and don’t know how to get past it, or have a technical issue you don’t have the knowledge to solve but are certain someone else does, or just need to vent! I, (perhaps selfishly!) wanted an environment in Boston where artists/business-people could exchange ideas and artistic services, crowd-source concepts, and just socialize with other creatives who get it!
And the group has grown past what I could’ve envisioned, with our membership expanding exponentially, we’ve held an incredibly successful team selling event in December, 2014, the Etsy Artists of Boston Winter Bazaar at the Arsenal Project, and had some fantastic group meetings, last month hosting reps from the mobile app Cinch Polls, and this month, an attorney from Lovrien Law to educate us on the finer points of trademark, copyright, patents, and related issues. We’re looking forward to our upcoming Etsy Craft Party in June, and I’m working on getting more of our membership to take on leadership positions, to ensure we all have a voice! Looking ahead, I see exciting opportunities for our Boston-based community!
I have to also express gratitude, for my consistent customers, who’ve been so supportive, and kept me going. In January/February, I traveled to Costa Rica and Belize, as I was contemplating a bit of a change in my product line at Hieropice. I was seeking inspiration for landscapes, and a bit of a pause from business-as-usual. It gave me an opportunity to focus on new work, taking a pause from creating existing designs. I’ve got some ideas percolating, but I want to keep them under-wraps until their ready to introduce! So, stay-tuned for some new pieces!