1. Tell us a bit about yourself name, location, affiliations, personal stuff.
Hello Everyone! My name is Violet and I am the handmade clothing and handbag designer of FrancescaStella. My FrancescaStella shop on Etsy is named after my three year old darling daughter that I love making handmade items for that she can play dress up with or wear everyday. I was originally born and raised in Chicago, Illinois and moved down to the sunny region of Southern California in my pre-teen years. I go back and visit the windy city of Chicago every couple of years but definitely always glad to come back home in California. I enjoy the fact that the snow, beach and mountains can all be reached within minutes to only a couple of hours away, all depending on where you live here of course. I am apart of the great handmade community of Etsy! I happen to stumble on the website over a year and half ago and fell in love with all the creative items on there and got inspired to start my own shop and pursue my love of sewing!
2. Apart from creating things, what do you do?
3. Please describe your creative process how, when, materials, etc.
4. What led you to start creating your art/craft?
I have always like to create and be creative since I was a child where my grandmother gave me my first tools to sew and continued on through my teen years. As I became an adult responsibilities, work and school became the priority and my sewing got put on the back burner until after my daughter was born and I decided to be a stay at home mommy. I needed something for myself and at times to keep my sanity in motherhood, so I thought what better time to start up my sewing again and share it with others and that’s when I found Etsy. It was a perfect match and knew I was on the right path with my idea.
5. How did you decide what medium you wanted to work with?
I have always loved and had lots of handbags so I thought why not make them and sell them. Children’s clothing for girls was always too cute especially in boutiques where you could find something a little unique and so I thought why not make items for my daughter and other little darlings. I also have a passion for vintage goodies and designs. You know it is the right medium when you have a true passion for it!
6. What aspect of creating your art/craft do you find the most enjoyable?
I most enjoy the sewing part and selecting the fabrics and materials. Everything else is just part of the process.
7. If you had to choose one other medium in which to display your “creativity”, what would that be and why?
If I could choose another medium to display my creativity it would be in a theatrical costume design setting where you could be a little more out there with designs and work with different time periods putting pieces together to go with the story.
8. What handmade possession do you most cherish?
I have had some accessories and clothing passed down from my grandmother and mother that I dearly cherish.
9. List five of your favorite books, movies, songs/musical groups, and web sites besides Etsy.
I like to read sappy romance and vampire novels, yes I have read all the Twilght series and now am reading the Vampire Diaries!. Love romance, vampire, classic and historical based films. Love Depeche Mode, The Cure, 80’s, Classicial, Shakira and etc… I am pretty much open to almost all types of music and eras.
10. What are your favorite features on Etsy? What new features would you like to see?
My favorite Etsy features are the treasuries, favorites and showcases.
11. How do you organize your business? Such as finances, keeping track of supplies and marketing etc?
Out of all things this is my least favorite but I try to organize and keep track of all my Etsy things on my computer and in good old file folders.
12. How well is your shop doing? How long has it been open? Number of sales? Number of visits?
My shop has been open for a year and a half now on Etsy. It has been a slow start but I am always trying to see how I can improve or what I can change. One thing though I know for sure is that you can’t lose sight of making what you love and enjoy the most because if you do then what’s the point? right?
13. What do you think you’re doing right for getting the sales you have? Or what tips do you have for other Etsy seller
14. How do you promote your work, on and off-line?
I just basically try to re-list, list new items often and spread the word to friends and family in person or through emails. I am also planning on trying to do some boutiques or shows to sell in person, definitely a difference in selling online and in person.
15. In ten years I’d like to be…
I would like to continue creating and designing possibly in the costume design field and spending the rest of the days with family and friends along with happiness and good health for all.
16. Where else on the net can we find you and your goods? Twitter, blog, Flikr account, any others?