Featured Artisan today:
Until September 2008, Jessica Van Den wasn't crafty at all. That changed when she was given a novel about a woman who owned a yarn store in New York. It inspired her to start knitting - and it all went from there! She now works at her jewellery business and her blogs full-time, as well as launching *bespoke*
Please tell me more about *bespoke*
*bespoke* - a lovely little zine all about handmade, vintage, photography, art, micro-business, eco-friendly goodness and much more – all in a sweet little A5 sized package that you can take anywhere!
Issue 1 of *bespoke* features gorgeous photos and artwork; interviews with a number of successful full-time crafters - including a feature on those who use upcycled/recycled materials in their work; an interview with Liss Winnel from the blog Daydream Lily; a Summer Lovin' feature of handmade products; cherish - stories and photographs of cherished handmade and vintage items; vintage crafts - this issue it's macrame, and much more!
*bespoke* is for those who live and love a creative, crafty life - and especially for those who sell their craft as a hobby or business!
That sounds great! Where can I find it?
can I read your blog, follow you on twitter or like you on facebook?
How did you get the idea for your zine?
I love blogging, but I really wanted to create something tangible - and hence *bespoke* was born! A lot of folk are doing e-zines recently, but I wanted to make a print magazine that would last. When I put the idea out there, I was happily amazed by the positive response, and I ran with it!
What does your day look like?
What does your day look like?
Well, currently I work all day, every day, with the occasional ½ day off here and there. I’m a night-owl, so I tend to wake up around 9, and hop straight onto my computer – usually I’ll do this in bed, with my laptop, and my husband Nick will bring me a cup of tea. During this time, I’ll respond to any urgent e-mails; re-list items that have sold and send thank-you’s to my customers; check my blogs for stats and comments, catch up with my online friends on twitter and forums; and write down any orders that have come in.
Selling online, the absolute key is your photography. Learn how to take clear, captivating and enticing product shots. Never, ever use a flash! Have a consistent background and look to your photography – and stick to it.
Join twitter, and use it. This is, hands down, the best thing I've ever done for my business – let alone my sanity! I have made so many friends (and sales) through twitter, and there is no way I could have launched *bespoke* so successfully if it wasn't for the power of twitter and the connections I've made. It even landed me a radio interview (http://epherielldesigns.com/hello-radio)!
Mostly – have fun and keep creating! And take time off – this is something I'm terrible at, but I always feel refreshed for taking a break. It can be really hard to do when you are busy, but you have to realise that no-one is going to tell you it's your 'day off' – you have to make it happen. I got really sick for a day a while back (Nick said he knew I was really ill because I didn't even get on my laptop) and it made me realise that the world will not implode if I'm away from the computer for a day.
Thank you so much for the great interview! Be sure to head over to http://bespokezine.com right away!