Summer is sizzling, and your to do list is a mile long, so let’s make shopping easy for you. Whether you’re looking for amazingness for your BFF's birthday, a thank you for that special coworker you share glares with during meetings, or some long overdue self care, we have the perfect summer gifts from local handmade artists in the DFW area. Shop local, support your community, and feel all warm and fuzzy knowing you mean the world to a small business. Enjoy our gift guide of modern Americana-inspired favorites and not-so-traditional red, white, and blue goodies.
Whether you’re shopping for your mom, a friend, that coworker two cubicles down who is always covered in cat hair or your bestie who’s expecting, we have the perfect Mother’s Day gifts from makers right here in the DFW area. Shop local, shop small and support your community. It’s a win all around, if you ask us. Here are a few of our favorite finds for all the moms in your life.
Join us with the Dallas Opera in welcoming Puccini’s popular opera, La Bohème, as we present the Montmartre Artist Village opening weekend, March 15 -17. Before the show and during the first intermission, enjoy perusing a special bohemian market in the Winspear lobby with some of our favorite artists—Friday, March 15 and Sunday, March 17th only. If you’re interested in seeing the show, please take advantage of our special ticket offer for 20% off single ticket purchases with code ETSY20 on the Dallas Opera website. Scroll down for a full listing of opening weekend artists below. Hope to see you there!
Hello, everyone! My name is Alex Hughes, and I sell my globally inspired prints and illustrations through my business, Wandering Paper Co. I went to college at TCU, where I majored in graphic design, and I now live in the DFW area with my husband Philip and our cat Athena.
I don't know about you, but I'm so excited fall is here. The breeze is blowing, football season is upon us, and the infamous PSL is back. Yes, I know it’s still 90 degrees outside, but 90 is better than 100, and in Texas, we’ll take what we can get.
It's funny, every year when school starts I have the urge to take up a class or two myself. Maybe it’s the shiny new school supplies (it’s hard to say no to a new leather-bound notebook from Ox and Pine, or a witty to-do list from Kat French Design) or maybe it’s just the feeling of working toward a goal, but I miss the feeling of satisfaction that comes with learning something new. It’s fitting, then, that September is National Self-Improvement month. It's the perfect excuse to take a class, read a book or take on a new challenge. So I've put together a few ways to make the most of self-improvement month. Feel free to give them a try.
Start a Journal
I’m a recent fan of journaling after reading The Artist’s Way and doing the corresponding journal exercises. According to the Huffington Post, journaling can help boost self-confidence, create mindfulness, and even help you achieve your goals. For the full list of benefits, check out the full article on the benefits of keeping a journal. Plus, starting a journal is a great excuse to buy a cool new notebook.
Visit a Museum
The Dallas Museum of Art, the Nasher Sculpture Center, and the Perot Museum are three of my favorites. The best part is, they are all within walking distance of each other. Take yourself on a museum date, then stop by the food trucks at Klyde Warren Park for lunch or a mid-afternoon snack.
Take a Class
I love Oil & Cotton and the wide array of adult classes and workshops they offer. I’ve taken portrait watercolor and marble paper workshops there and loved both. They have lots of new offerings this fall, including felting, interior painting, photography, and intro ceramics. Check out their full fall lineup here.
Join a Gym
Yes, I know, everyone’s favorite subject. Luckily, there are tons of fun alternatives to a boring 30-minute treadmill jog. Go climbing at Summit Climbing Gym, try kickboxing at Title Boxing Club or join a recreational kickball league at Big D Sports. You may have so much fun you forget you're exercising.
De-Clutter and Decorate
Okay, maybe this is less ‘self-improvement’ and more ‘life-improvement,’ but de-cluttering always makes me happier and less stressed. First, choose a small area of the house, like a bathroom or a closet — somewhere that can be organized in one day. Next, take a page from Marie Kondo and keep only the things that spark joy. Once you have de-cluttered and organized, a new piece of art is a great way to give a space new life. I've always been a fan of these origami koalas from Tokodots, and I've had my eye on this hand-drawn map of White Rock Lake from Joy Street Maps for my living room.
In any case, once you have given away all the clutter, every time you pass that space you will feel lighter and more carefree.
Learn a Language
I love to learn new languages, which is why I’m a big fan of the app Duolingo. It's free, and the exercises are only 5 minutes long, so it’s easy to practice every day. Plus, you can find your friends and keep track of points.
Take a Bath
You deserve a reward after all this self-improvement. Taking care of yourself will give you the energy you need to stick with you new habit. Winding down with a bath, a book or a good movie is a great way to de-stress and get ready to tackle the day tomorrow.
What are your plans for self-improvement month? Do you have any self-improvement tips you would like to share? Let us know in the comments.
There's more to back-to-school season than No. 2 pencils and late nights wrapping up new lesson plans. We put together a roundup of handmade gifts for students, teachers and parents gearing up for the new academic year.
We have a roundup of Etsy Dallas member shops with sales celebrating Etsy's 13th birthday. Set a reminder, the sales event is June 18-22. You don't want to miss these deals!
Expressions Bracelets is offering 20 percent off the entire shop (excluding the sale section). You'll also get free shipping (U.S. domestic orders only) on orders of $50 or more.
MayaXKiwi is offering 15 percent off all prints and cards.
The Pig and the Peacock is offering 15 percent off the entire shop (excluding favors and custom orders).
Sasha's Hand-Poured is offering 15 percent off the whole shop plus free shipping on orders over $40.
Wandering Paper Co. is offering 20 percent off everything in the shop.
Whipped Up Wonderful is offering 15 percent off plus free shipping on orders of $35 or more. Cannot be combined with other coupons. Free shipping on U.S. domestic orders only.
Whispers in the Glen is offering 20 percent off the entire shop.
Tokodots is offering 15% off everything in the shop.
Ahaha Home is offering 15 percent off everything in the shop.
Earrings by Eryn is offering 10 percent off most items in the shop.
Here's wishing you a happy 13th, Etsy! And happy summer to all of you. Enjoy the deals and the sunshine.
Etsy Dallas is a local craft collective run by a juried group of crafters, artists and designers in Dallas who sell their wares on Etsy. (No, we aren't the same as Etsy. We have the blessing of Etsy as the official team for the Dallas metroplex.) We are an all-volunteer group who are serious about our handmade businesses and the success of this team and its endeavors.
Etsy Dallas began in 2007 and was the first city team in Texas. Since the founding, our members have been invested in the Dallas community, working with Etsy Dallas to benefit different aspects of the creative community and culture that makes this a great city. The team is run by a group of volunteers known as the Leadership Team.
The mission of Etsy Dallas is to promote the handmade movement in the Greater Dallas area and beyond. You can browse all our member artists for some of the best handmade wares around.
We hope to see y'all at our events this year. We had a great start to the year with our Love Letters Challenge. And there is much more to come! You can sign up for our newsletter to be sure you don't miss anything.
Mardi Gras is here and we are celebrating Fat Tuesday with some of our favorite Etsy Dallas finds. Here are a few of our handmade finds for the day. Laissez les bons temps rouler, y'all!
We have big plans for 2018 and a list of resolutions to prove it. How do you motivate yourself to stick to your goals? We have a roundup of 8 local finds which are great for helping us meet our goals and for rewarding ourselves for our achievements.
1. Track goals with pretty stationery from Kat French Design. We love this to-do list notepad (and the calendar notepad above) for helping us knock out our daily and monthly tasks.
2. Keep things tidy and smelling fresh with soy wax candles from The Pig and the Peacock. This one in Lemongrass Sage is uplifting with garden and citrus notes that leave us feeling refreshed and energized.
3. Recover from workouts and practice self-care with a bath bomb from Whipped Up Wonderful. This Honey Almond bomb is made with hand-ground honey and oat powders that will pamper your skin and is thought to reduce the signs of aging. Yes, please!
4. Take better care of your skin with soothing lotion from Sasha's Hand Poured. We love this silky Spearmint Eucalyptus lotion for winter.
5. Make more meals at home. Pro tip: We hear good things about the Instant Pot. Don't forget a cute apron while you whip up something yummy. We love the selection from Mia Maria.
6. Feed your friendships. Send your friends some real mail and let them know you're thinking of them. When is the last time you got some happy mail? Didn't it feel great? We love the Texas Knit notecards from Tokodots.
7. Remember to meditate. The Texas Zen Garden from SurlyBunny has everything you need.
8. Keep a journal in 2018. We love these personalized leather journals from Ox & Pine.
Here's wishing you all a magical and adventurous 2018! We hope you have a good one.
We know y'all love handmade art and the makers who create it. And we are so grateful that you do. We have put together a list of local Dallas-area finds from our member shops for you, just in time for Black Friday and Small Business Saturday. Support local businesses and get some holiday shopping done this Thanksgiving season. And don't forget to treat yourself!
Don't miss out on these Labor Day deals from some of our favorite Etsy Dallas shops. Here's wishing you all a fun and safe long weekend.
P.S. Our newsletter subscribers got the scoop about these deals first. *hint hint*
We asked Alexis, of Whipped Up Wonderful, to share some of her product photography tips with us. Her product photos are always so dreamy and beautiful. Here are her helpful suggestions for photography that will definitely up your Etsy listing and Instagram game!
If you are like me, you not only make your product; you package, label, ship and do all the marketing and photography. I’ve taken a lot of bad photos: I’ve tried an “edgy” crooked look, busy backgrounds and overlooked blurriness. Like anything, I improved with practice, and a little revisiting my photography class book from high school. Of course, I’ll also guess you don’t have a photo studio. The cool thing is all you need is a bright sunny window, and a few props, if any, and of course your camera or smartphone.
The White Background:
For your minimalist needs look no further than Amazon for a pop up studio. These fold away boxes offer a full white background, diffuse the light around the subject and make your handmade items “Amazon” ready.
When you need a look that is more like a catalog style, or you want to try to sell by hitting an emotional key with your customers, then grab your items and let’s look around the house.
Your bath products might look great beside that lovely tub. Your candles might look great on your coffee table. Open those windows wide and get creative.
Pro Tip : Your house isn’t exactly House Beautiful? Pop over to your local home improvement store to create some unique backdrops using wood or tile. Not super handy? Try scrapbook pages or poster board for smaller items.
You might want to experiment with the lighting at different times of day in your house. Sometimes you might only have a few workable hours.
Invest in a tripod. If you need anything to keep a cohesive style, get a tripod, even if you are using your smartphone. You don’t need to drop a lot of money on it either.
Now for the editing. Very rarely will you take a photo from camera to computer and find it to be listing ready. Your computer might already have some photo editing software. If not, there are quite a few easy editing programs online that are cheap or free.
Pro Tip: Steer clear of filters. While trendy and eye catching, they will distort colors and rely on gimmicks (such as bokeh or color washes) that aren’t catalog caliber.
Focus on brightness, white balance and just a touch of saturation to balance and color correct your photos.
And there you have it! Smartphones and the internet have given us all a little leg up in the photography department. Good luck!
We love Whipped Up Wonderful’s amazing line of bath bombs, bubble bars and perfumes. Alexis is a top seller of bath bombs on Etsy for a reason. You’ll love her items, all made with biodegradable and renewable ingredients. Everything in her shop is cruelty free and most are vegan.
Be sure to stop by her booth and treat yourself at the Spring Bash this Sunday, May 7, at Gilley's Dallas. We will be there 10:30 a.m. to 5 p.m.
Alexis took a quick break from whipping up all the things for a Q&A with us ...
What are you most looking forward to for the 2017 Spring Bash?
Shopping! I always look forward to getting to meet some local makers.
Is your shop offering anything new/special/different at the Bash?
I’ll be offering some debut products, like my rainy days bath bombs , my bath macarons, and hopefully my new Jelly Bean Bath Melts.
What is your favorite part of prepping for the Spring Bash?
I love planning my booth. Spring and Summer require different looks than Fall shows, so I get to really have fun and experiment. Also the time crunch - nothing makes you more creative than a deadline!
What makes this event special for you?
This will be the first year I’m attending the show not only as a vendor, but as part of the Etsy Dallas Leadership Team! I always make time for the Bash’s any way (being that they are the best independent handmade art and craft show in Dallas), but being such a part of making this show happen makes it all the more special.
So, you have been making for awhile, and are ready for the next big leap onto store shelves? Our resident bath bomb guru, Alexis of Whipped Up Wonderful, has joined us today to share some wholesaling how-to's. Check it out, and don't miss her upcoming class at Dallas Maker's Space, Etsy Dallas Presents: Wholesale for Beginners + Q&A, for a more in depth look. You can sign up for the class HERE, and use "LEARN" upon checkout for a surprise discount!
Getting your toes wet with wholesale can be as simple as your local coffee shop saying “Hey! I love your stuff. Can I buy 20 pieces?” Or it can catch you by surprise when an out of state shop asks for $1,000 of merchandise as fast as you can send out. I’ve seen both scenarios, and it has taken me about three years to be ready for anything. Now, let’s get you ready.
1. Reevaluate your pricing
Let’s look at your pricing. A quick Google search will get you tons of calculators on the matter. They all boil down to a simple equation.
(Labor + Materials) x 2 = Wholesale Price
Wholesale Price x 2 = Retail Price or MSRP
Break out the calculator, and all the receipts and settle in. Draw up a cost sheet for your product. My cost sheet looks something like this:
Don’t forget to factor in the labels, packaging needed, or anything else that makes it a finished product.
How are these prices looking? If a necklace has a cost of $50, do you think that you could get a wholesale client to pay $100 for it?
This is a great time to assess making sure you are getting everything at the best prices. Are there corners you could cut and at what cost?
Let’s think ahead. You have a wholesale client who wants to buy 50 pieces, is there a price for 50 pieces vs 500? Consider tiered pricing. You may not need it for the first year you offer wholesale, but you will thank yourself later when you are in hot demand and have those prices at the ready!
2. Policies - I developed my policies based roughly on my retail policies, but they have changed slightly. It’s always okay to change up policies, but consistency instills confidence. Here is a list of policies I make sure I cover:
Minimum Order - What is the minimum amount you would offer to a wholesale client? There is no magic number as some stores have no minimums and some stores have thousands. Based on your price points in your store, what would be a nice amount to make a little section of a store looked filled out? I find keeping this out of the astronomical side makes me more friendly to Mom & Pop shops.
Minimum for ReOrders - would this be the same amount, or less? You want your client to keep shopping with you, and top up their displays. This is typically a smaller amount than the initial order minimum.
Exchange/Refunds/Damaged Goods - Unless you sell whatever that metal is that Captain America’s Shield is made out of, I guarantee you you will have some damages. They happen. What steps will you do to fix this?
What about unsold goods? Will you return them?
What will the shipping policies be on those decisions?
Again, there are no correct answers here, but I like to put myself in the shoes of the customer. I want to know that my supplier will have my back. If I’m treated well, I’ll shop there again!
Zip Code Protection - Some stockiest may have a shop in a small town. Will you zip code protect in case the shop 10 minutes away also wants to buy your stuff?
Perhaps only on shops that spend a specific amount per month/year?
Net Payment Options - Net payments is when you collect money when goods are delivered. Current popular options are Net 15, 30, 60 - which means if you ship out your goods, the store has 15, 30, or 60 days to pay. You may only want to offer this to repeat customers. You may not want to offer this at all.
Other Payment Options - Stockists usually aren’t giant corporations but rather Mom & Pop Shops. Will you offer any special options for your return clients? Perhaps deposits on orders then net options after delivery? Payment at time of shipping? There are a ton of options, and you’ll probably get asked for all of them! It’s okay to be flexible, but do what fits your company best!
Okay! We ironed out all that money stuff. Now for “sellin’ it.”
Because you are an online company, your customers rely on the photos and descriptions you provide. Look over your photos. Are you going to make them Amazon ready and photograph everything on white? This actually is a good default to have for your line sheet later. Which brings us to…
4. Line Sheet & Order Forms
Because everything is online now, I’ve never had to worry about a physical Order Form. However, you may have local clients who expect you to pop by and help them with their stock.
Line Sheets are an easy to read list of the products you offer and their price. Some line sheets even show the prices available in bulk tiers ($/20 $/100 $/100)
On Etsy, it’s easy to fill up a line sheet with your existing inventory. Or you can make one yourself.
5. Making Your Items Shop Friendly
Sometimes we get too involved in our retail customers. How you package your items for them, might not work in a shop setting. Look at your packaging. Go shopping for similar items. Consider the best way your items will be displayed. Where will the price tags go? Will they hang on a rack or will they be displayed in a jar? You are in luck if you have a local shop. Go to the shop, and discuss options with the shop keeper. Different shop keepers have different real estate options.
6. Follow up!
You’ve done all the work, you’ve turned on your ‘Open’ Sign, now what?
FOLLOW UP! Shop keepers are often very busy and are pulled in a lot of different directions. Following up on emails is a good way to keep you in their mind, and keep them coming back.
Send out restock notifications, new product notifications, and stay ahead of the holidays. Your client will appreciate your attention to detail and your enthusiasm for keeping them stocked.
Okay, procrastinators, time is running out for Spring Bash apps. The deadline to apply for the Etsy Dallas Spring Bash is March 10, 2017. We reached out to a few of our previous vendors for feedback and here’s a little bit of what we heard …
“The Bashes are always so much fun.” - Heidy, Heidy Henke Designs
“I love our shoppers. They are always excited to see what’s new at the Bash. Many stop by, just to say hi and check in on you while they shop. Spring Bash shoppers are the best!” - SaRatta, Expressions Bracelets
“The energy, quality and variety is always a fun way to prepare for some of those spring and summer events. I can always find a perfect gift for mom, a gift for dad, and something for those June brides.” - Alexis, Whipped Up Wonderful
“It’s like a super concentrated show set on fast forward! I just love the energy!” - Lynn, Both Hands Studio
“It is so fun to get to share our art and craft with our shoppers face-to-face. I am always blown away by all the talent of all the other vendors too!” - Sabrina, The Pig and The Peacock
We are counting down the days, y'all. We hope you're as excited as we are! If you want to apply to be part of the Spring Bash this year, be sure to get your application in no later than March 10!
Location: Move Studio 17062 Preston Rd Suite 108, Dallas TX 75248
Participating Etsy Dallas Members:
Kathleen Care Jewelry
The Abundance Boutique also carries handmade items by several other Etsy Dallas members!
Location: Dallas Palms 2424 Marsh Ln, Dallas TX 75006
Participating Etsy Dallas Members:
Whipped Up Wonderful
Entry is free but please bring a toy to donate to Toys for Tots!
It's Monday, and you know what that means! Today, we're continuing with our weekly Shop Spotlight series with Whipped Up Wonderful. Alexis Strickland, owner and maker, makes unique and fun handmade soaps, bath bombs, and other skin care goodies.
|Alexis Strickland, owner|
What is your shop's motto? Creating spa-quality bath treats with a conscience.
|Aphrodisiac Bath Bomb, with notes of grapefruit, lemon, mandarin, and green tomato leaf.|
What is your favorite item that you sell? Bath bombs of all colors and fragrances.
|A custom gift box.|
Fun fact about you: I'm a part-time art teacher and sweet tea enthusiast.
How did you get started? The short story? Boredom. Never leave me alone with a book on making your own soaps and bath products. Companies get founded, and things get messy!
|Lavender Dreams Bath Bomb topped with organic lavender buds.|
Anything else we should know? Each item is made with a genuine focus on ingredient sustainability and biodegradability. I use locally-sourced ingredients whenever possible and make a point of supporting other local businesses and charities.
Thanks, Alexis! I can only begin to imagine how amazing your studio smells with all of these goodies lurking about.
You can follow Whipped Up Wonderful on Instagram, Facebook, Tumblr, and Twitter.
Have a great week, everybody!