One of the phrases "I'm not with Stupid Anymore" was the perfect Valentine for someone as it sold in my Etsy shop last week. So you see, these digital designs are great for scrabble pendants, paper crafts, whatever you can dream up!
Shirley not only makes unique designs, she offers incredible customer service going far beyond the call of duty! My shopping experience with WildBlueberry Ink was fantastic and if you read on, Shirley is right...buyers love a little extra attention. I know I did and now I'm a repeat customer. Thanks, Shirley!!
1. Tell us about you ~ your name, location, hobbies and interests. Where do you sell your handmade items?
My name is Shirley Woodard Polk and I just married this past September. I am born and raised in North Carolina. I love to digital scrapbook and for the past year I have been teaching myself photography and how the manual setting on my camera works. I currently sell my items on Etsy only. However, I am working on an online store and I am also working on selling prints of some of my illustrations. Stay tuned for details!
2. Tell us about your art and how you got your start selling your handmade items on Etsy?
I have a BFA in Visual Communications (Illustration, Design, etc). While at my last job a co-worker showed me her scrabble pendants and was telling the process of making them. She asked me if I thought I could create her some art for them and I said sure I will try it. She loved it! She told me about Etsy and when the opportunity to leave my job and become a SAHM came up, I thought what a great way to make extra money. The rest is history!
I like to personally create all my art. Every now and then I will find some really cool images to scan but for the most part all my images are created by me. Everything I do is an extension of my personality. From the 1 inch digital collage sheets to the massive scrapbooks.
3. What inspires your art?
Everything!! I will be getting my daughter dressed and notice a cool pattern on her shirt and voila a digital sheet will appear. I will drive by a business and see a sign with great colors and then there is another sheet. As far as digital books, all my inspiration is my family! Every book I sell has originated as a memory I created for my family.
4. What is your own favorite design and why?
Well for sentimental reasons I love the wedding album that I am currently selling. It is the album I created for my own wedding.
As far as collage sheets - WOW - I have so many that I love but I think right now my favorites are a tie between my Coffee Talk Designs and my iHeart Designs.
The Coffee Talk design was completely inspired by my sister and her love for Starbucks. She suggested the idea and researched some of the quotes for me. I then hand drew all my graphics. It was the first sheet that I really exercised my illustration skills on. The iHeart design just makes me laugh and a lot of them are so true for me.
5. Do you have any advice for those who are new to selling on Etsy?
Customer Service - it goes a long way! It is the best form of marketing, it brings back customers, it keeps you in business. Try to include a free gift even if it just a coupon for free shipping on their next purchase. Send a little thank you note or follow up with a thank you e-mail. Think about how you feel when you get that little extra attention and make your customers feel the same way.
6. Do you have any favorite Etsy artists?
I have so many it depends on the category you ask. I love the clothes in this shop: Miss Brache
Her stuff is the cutest I have ever seen: Candy Chick
Absolutely love her stuff and her pictures are amazing: Sea Unicorn
Have you ever seen clothes this cute for a little one? Small Beans
I'm a purse girl and she has won my heart: Crazy Boy
7. Are there any other websites or stores where we can find you?
WildblueBerry Ink Blog, Twitter, Facebook
When you visit WildBlueberry Ink, be sure to sign up for the newsletter...it's full of specials and other goodies! Thanks for sharing your talents with us, Shirley. It's so great that you were able to make this happen for yourself. Happy sales!!