Your New Friend Sam, Etsy Shop: Rubber Stamps for Shops

What I love most about shopping on Etsy are the personal relationships you develop with your customers and other shop owners. Each shop has a face to the name and although the shops create a market that span continents, it feels like a small little community!

Since Christmas is coming ever so quickly, I thought I’d share about a few of my clients that bought stamps from me for their own Etsy shops, and real life shops! If you have a moment, or two, settle in with a nice cup of coffee and check them out! Maybe get some early holiday shopping done!


 

lacey ostoj hum right along your new friend sam shop rubber stamp

Lacey Osojo of Hum Right Along

www.etsy.com/shop/humrightalong

I loved working with Lacey on her stamp! Plus I was so honored and smitten to read her blog post on her stamp! Like over the moon, can not believe my eyes in shock, happy! Since then we have been blogging and Instagram friends! So fun!

Anyway, take a looksie around her shop… she sells handstamped jewelry with various sayings. Of course my favorite is Made to Create which I featured on my birthday wish list this year! As Lacey says, “I hope you find something you can’t live without!”

humming right along create necklace

katie bee jewelery - your new friend shop rubber stamp

Katie Rice of KT Bee Jewelry

www.etsy.com/shop/KTBeeJewelry

I was so excited when Katie approached me regarding my Circle Shop Stamp… she wanted to elaborate on that with a leafy wreath and a little bumble bee! Loved how it came out, and love it even better in color!

Check out her jewelry here in her shop… my favorite is the pearl layering necklace as seen in the photo above.

P.S. A portion of the proceeds now goes to supporting the Wounded Warrior Project!

katie bee final etsy your new friend sam logo design

elise taylor - your new friend shop stamp

Elise Taylor Design

www.etsy.com/shop/EliseTaylorDesign

Elise is such a sweetheart! And her wood sign and crafts are so unique. Her shop, Elise Taylor Design, specializes in hand-painted wooden signs for weddings, bachelorette parties, engagement shoots, and nurseries. These signs are so perfect for nautical inspired weddings and showers!

elise taylor - Nautical Flag Paddle

jolie mae shop rubber stamp by your new friend sam web

Jolie Mae Collections

www.etsy.com/shop/JolieMaeCollections

When the husband and wife team of Jolie Mae Collections first approached me to create their stamp, they actually liked this bookplate stamp. So they were the very first to customize it for shops! And it’s become quite popular ever since! So thanks Jolie Mae! Their shop specializes in wedding signs but includes so so so much more than that! I love their chalkboards that include mail slots and holders for other random items like phones. There’s a little something for everybody!

jolie mae wedding signs on etsy

just frayin around your new friend sam etsy shop rubber stamp with muslin bag

Just Frayin’ Around

www.etsy.com/shop/JustFrayinAround

I know I’ve said this so many times, but I love when Etsy clients further customize the stamps to their own unique style and tastes, even when it was just to remove the circle around my popular circle shop stamp. Jessica’s shop, Just Frayin’ Around, has such cute items, and a wide range to choose from… unique clothing to vintage baby items and accessories! I love her monogrammed bloomers!

just frayin around your new friend sam etsy shop rubber stamp

mercy market shop rubber stamp from Etsy Your New Friend Sam

Mercy Market

www.etsy.com/shop/TheMercyMarket

I’m really excited to post about this brand new shop, The Mercy Market. They’re a non-profit that specialize in wood signs, small canvas prints, and magnets. All their profit goes to support the Mercy House, in Kenya, a maternity home that aids pregnant girls living in extreme poverty. They are still building their shop, so please check back soon!

Mercy Market products

no.2 sweetheart shop stamp melindajanewain from Your New Friend Sam

No. 2 Sweetheart, Austraila

http://www.no2sweetheart.com.au/

Yup, that’s right! This store is a real life store, not just a digital store front! And they’re in Austraila! How fun!! No. 2 Sweetheart is a “green boutique” with a range of products from clothing to haircare, homewares to makeup. Visit their site here… or if you’re in Austraila…. 🙂

no.2 sweetheart shop

blooms in paradise shop rubber stamp from Your New Friend Sam

Blooms In Paradise

@bloomsinparadise on Instagram

Jackie from Blooms in Paradise is based out of gorgeous Hawaii where she crafts flower crowns! From Hawaii. She’s the real deal! Currently, Jackie only sells on Instagram but is hoping to open an Etsy shop sometime soon! Check her out!

blooms in paradise flower crowns shop

Lve2Cre8 rubber stamps by Your New Friend Sam

Love 2 Cre8

www.etsy.com/shop/Lve2Cre8

Instead of creating a custom stamp with Your New Friend Sam, Cheryl from Love 2 Cre8, purchased a few stock stamps to decorate and personalize her packaging for newborn accessories.

Lve2Cre8 newborn photo by Jessica Bentley

Thanks so much for taking a look around… already have a handful of new shops to post about so keep your eye out for a part 2!

All photos above are provided by clients except the Frayin’ Around stamp image.

Friday Footnotes

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Ever have those weeks that are just slow enough that for half a heartbeat or so, you start to question whether you’ve headed down the wrong path? That was me last week. That was me just this past Sunday. My Etsy shopped slowed from the frenzy of commuter hour to a nicely paced drive in the middle of the country. i.e. it didn’t even stop. But it slowed to the point where I had the mini-est of panic attacks, questioning whether or not this could really be for real. That the craziness of these past few months were over and that it was all a big joke that God was pulling. Well, all those doubts flew right out the window on Monday and we’re back to the juggling always multi-tasking day-to-day frenzy that my life has become. I must admit, I kinda missed this frenzy.

Soooo…. another week with no Internet finds for my footnotes. Uh, this may be like week 3 of me missing them, so let’s take a moment to see what I’ve been up to. Just a few sneak peeks…

1. Embossing [Anything I Can Get My Hands On]

A few months back, a very dear friend of mine asked me to design a bridal shower invitation. The theme involved the lovely color of gold…. so I asked her if she would want to try embossing the invitations. Something I have been wanting to add to my shop for sometime (but did I mention I hadn’t tried this technique in over a decade??!). So we get the invite design, rubber stamp made, and we plan a day to get together to create 50 invitations. Ugh, let’s just say, it didn’t work out like we hoped. But since I had all the tools now, I wanted to put them to good use—plus I discovered embossing pens where I can straight up right and turn my writing to embossed amazing-ness—which led me to embossing wedding table number cards, greeting cards, and whatever else I could get my hands on! Let’s just say, my hubby came home from a weekend of BBQ to a kitchen lightly covered in glittering gold dust. I snapped some photos and just listed these babies in my shop this week. Let’s see what happens next shall we? Whether they sell or not, I sure had fun making them!

your new friend hello happy birthday cards

Whew, after that long story, you may still be wondering what embossing even is…. using rubber stamps and a embossing ink pad or a pen that emits the special embossing ink, the ink impression is dusted with powder and then heated which creates that raised embossed link.

2. Hand Lettered Hang Tags

Another semi-new product to my shop are hand-lettered tags that can be used for gift tags—and personalized for name cards too! I love listing new items just to see what happens. After listing a set of 4 tags that would be for the everyday use with sayings like thanks, cheers, happy birthday, etc… I had a few custom orders come in with personalized tags for a bachelorette weekend, and then by a couple brides who wanted their bridesmaids names written and another just wanting their bridal party roles written out. These are the days where I can’t believe I’m getting paid to just write someone’s name on a tag. Humbled and shocked and feeling so blessed about this!

your new friend sam etsy bridal party name tags

3. Full Calligraphy Stamp

I’ve also listed a few new rubber stamps… seriously, I really used this little slow period to get a ton of new products going! I had listed a full calligraphy address stamp some time ago but was never truly happy with the look of the design…. and then comes another amazing Etsy customer who specially requested the stamp and I really love how theirs came out! Using a kinda funky and whimsical writing…

Your New Friend Sam Calligraphy Address Stamp Warren Family

4. Merry Christmas Rubber Stamp

Another rubber stamp just added to the shop is a Christmas one! Is it really that time of year already?? Okay, I may be a little ahead of myself, but I just started doodling and trying out the lettering and loved how the y in merry crossed the t and dotted the i! So I just couldn’t wait any longer! View the listing here.

Your New Friend Sam Etsy Calligraphy Merry Christma Rubber Stamp

5. Church Re-Brand

And last but not least, a non-Etsy related project, finishing up the big branding overhaul at my church. Well, semi-finished. Here’s a web banner, that we’re not even using anymore (don’t want to ruin the surprise of the new website!) just to give you a peek as I still need to photograph all the rest of the printed pieces. A time consuming, but oh-so-fun-and-worth-it project!

join a community group

Starting an Etsy Shop: Some Humble Words of Advice

your new friend sam rubber stamp thank you 0485 e

I am not an Etsy expert, but I wanted to share a few thoughts that I have come to realize over this past year. And I am sure if you went in to creating a shop after doing some market research, a lot of this would be already known to you. But I just jumped into running my shop, feet first with a blindfold on… just wanting to see what would happen.

Since I’m just coming out of a booming few weeks for my little shop… i.e. doubled my total sales in less than 2 months (!!!)… I’ve been reflecting back on times of struggle and lack of movement in the shop. Just a few weeks ago, I was feeling bummed that my sales were down and then boom, now I’m struggling to keep up! It’s only just now calming down and going back to normal. I’ve definitely noticed that there seem to be cycles in the Etsy world, especially when a lot of your clients are brides. But I hope the following random bits of wisdom can help in any Etsy business, whether wedding related or not.

Custom Requests

When you’re first starting out, just say yes. Yes to custom requests that is. They may be a little more work for you in the beginning but I can vividly remember a few custom requests that came in that drastically changed my business. The first one was last November when a woman wrote me saying that she liked my address stamps but just wanted their first names written out with a typed out last name. So basically an address stamp with no address. Well that sounds easy, I can do that no problem I told her. Without realizing it, by saying yes to her and then posting this new product in my shop, I’ve now sold over 25 of them. But I had no idea that was even a need to fill, until I was asked to fill it.

your new friend sam rubber stamps-2-line-custom-stamp-jon<3megan-crepeau

What Do You Want?

List things that you wish were out there. Here’s another product that I had no idea was already out there. I wanted to hand write my own wedding vows so I thought, hey, maybe other people do too! 33 sales later, with three options to choose from, I can say that my shop is definitely leaning in this direction over the sale of shower invitations that I had first listed, and started out my shop with.

your new friend sam handwritten vows DSC_6054

Variety of Products

List a variety of items… It took me a month to get my first sale  and that was for a invitation printable. But it took my listing the original address rubber stamp for me to get more frequent orders. After being open for over 6 months, I had just barely reached 50 sales. Of course, that was still a major accomplishment for me! And then sales really started to pick up even more after listing the handwritten wedding vows printables. Now, a little over a year later, I have over 70 items with an average of 50 sold items a month! And a variety of all is bought on a daily basis, there is no “one shining star” but a few in each category… to me, this just says that if I stuck with just printables, or just stamps, I would not have the same quantity sold (However, the downfall of that is less time to perfect the existing items).

What if you only have one item to sell? Can you make more of a variety, or add items that are somewhat related? For example, I started with address stamps and then moved into “thank you” stamps, then just plain name stamps, because that’s what people were writing and asking me for. It just kept growing, all stemmed from just that one item.

your new friend sam DSC_3722 mockup address stamp etsy

Watch Your Competitors’ Products and Images

I also click through when someone “favorites” one of my items and see what else they are “favoriting.” Doing that, allowed me to see what else people are shopping for and who my direct competition is. This led me from just selling a stock Thank You! stamp and adding personalization options… all because I saw that the people liking my stamps also liked a personalized stamp which I wasn’t offering at the time.

And then while looking at your competitors shops, notice how they feature their images. For some time, I primarily just showed a photo of the stamp itself. While the stamps are beautiful, wood engraved with the design, I began to notice that for the most part, all other shops just showed the stamp design/impression… not the stamp itself. That led me to start taking a bit more time styling images with envelopes and tags, showing the variety of uses for the stamps. Then using that photo as the main image, but the thumbnail shows a slightly cropped in view of just the design. Best of both worlds, right?

your new friend sam rubber stamps DSC_4375-Thank you mockup etsy

When It’s Slow… Don’t Panic

Chances are, your shop will have a boom, then slow down, then increase in sales again… over and over again… when it’s slow, don’t panic. Take a deep breath and use that time to better your shop. Add photos of projects and finished pieces to the listings, and improve your listing descriptions. Go back and check those other favorited listsings I mentioned before, see how they’ve worded things and see what else they have for sale. Brainstorm new products you can offer. Or just enjoy a break, kick back and relax!

Wow… guess I’ve learned a lot, didn’t realize I would have so much to say in this post!

Again, I am not an Etsy expert by any means… my measly 300+ sales are nothing in comparison to other shops, but each sale I am definitely proud of as there is a ton of shops like mine out there to choose from! Most of these are just good practice, and may not lead to a growth in sale, so take my words with a grain of salt, and know what works for me may not work for you. But by trial and error, keep what works, and move on from what doesn’t!

I’d love to connect with you! Do you own an Etsy shop or thinking about opening one? Leave a comment below!

Evernotes Every Friday

While I continue to play catch up every evening on all my various freelance projects, I thought giving another glimpse into a couple of my last 2 weeks’ projects would be fun!

1. Nautical Baby Shower Invite

Last week, I designed a baby shower invite for a friend of a friend… hoping to get this final design up in my Etsy shop within the next month. I just love how it came out!

andrea-nautical-5x7-peek

2. Etsy Stamp Sales

Speaking of Etsy, I could possibly say that my Etsy sales have quadrupled this month, but if you knew how they were doing last month… then that’s not really saying much. I just get so excited with every sale though! And then sending out each order, feels like sending a small piece of my heart right along. Anyway… I got 2 similar requests though this past week for a somewhat customized order of my return address stamp. Hoping to make this a regular product soon!

wiemann-sketch_1548

3. Glow

Working on a logo with a  neon light treatment for church….

glow-peek

4. Superman Birthday Party

A very special someone is turning 5 this month, here’s just a little peek into the festivities to come. Can you guess the game?

superman_20x30

5. Miss Kaelea’s 2 Year Photoshoot

Earlier this week, I spent an evening photographing this little wiggly dancing blonde 2 year old! I have only just begun digging through the hundreds of photos, but I thought I’d share a rare glimpse of the little miss laying still. So so much fun. I can’t wait to show you more!

kaelea-2-year-old-photography-wildomar-murrieta-park_0479