Vendor Call: Christmas Bazaar

Tuesday, September 25, 2012

Christmas Bazaar by Local Moms and Independent Artists

This season, we hope that more people will support local businesses, handmade and homemade goods as they do their Christmas shopping. A few moms in Toronto are recruiting local moms and local artists/vendors to sell their goods at a Christmas Bazaar in December. The tentative venue and date is Wychwood Barns, Dec. 1st. This will be confirmed by the end of this month, so they need to get the number of vendors by this Friday.

If you are interested apply here

Etsy Workshop

Saturday, September 22, 2012

On Wednesday, Etsy hosted a workshop for sellers in Toronto. 
For those of you who weren't able to make it, here are some of my notes from the event.

Shop Optimization
As Etsy sellers, we're running businesses, not just a shop. One of the things we can take advantage of on Etsy is the community there (for instance through teams).

There are:
19 million members
800 thousand active sellers
25% of all sales are across an international border
42 million unique visitors

  • To optimize your shop aim for cohesion, good photos, show the scale of items.
  • consider whether you have enough items and options (more items, more likely you will come up in searches)
  • include different price points
  • have different categories
  • make sure titles are easy to read (and optimized to catch the buyer's attention and be clear to the buyer, rather than include every detail which might be important to you)
  • make the first photos optimized for shop view (a square photo)
  • make sure your cohesive photos in shop view reflect your style (or brand)
  • your avatar should likewise be consistent with your style
  • include you shop location to allow buyers to shop local
  • consider adding something 3D to 2D items to add interest
This is where you include your credentials, inspiration, qualities, style and links, for instance to your blog.

This is where you can really tell your story and show your process.

Shop Policies
Make sure these are clear and accurate. Manage buyer expectations (i.e. reasonable shipping times, return policy, whatever you would want to know as a buyer).

Shop names, title & banner
Announcement keywords - what is in your shop comes first. You banner should reflect your style and brand. Include social media linking - make it easy for buyers.

Product pages
Represents you. Use all 5 photos. Include different angles. Show scale. Use a plain background. Avoid unnecessary logos (or large watermarks) - these will discourage people from including your items in treasuries.

Titles, Tags, Copy
Include keywords. Use all tags. Be very specific. Ask a friend what words they might use to search for your shop. Tags can be phrases. Try typing words into the search bar to find the popular searches. Check your shop stats to see how people are finding your shop and consider re-tagging items with the keywords which buyers are using.

 Collections are great, but you might not need to include them in titles. Try not to repeat titles.

Shop Stats
This is where to find how and where buyers are coming from.
  • Where are visitors coming from on Etsy?
  • If from Etsy, consider networking opportunities 
  • see what searches are working to find your items (both from within Etsy and from search engines) - use these keywords in tags, titles and copy
  • Where visitors are coming from off Etsy (i.e. blogs)? Are these places you would like to advertise
  • Direct traffic is great. Buyers know your shop
  • New Canadian Etsy newsletter!
  • Teams
  • On-line labs 


Tuesday, September 18, 2012

The Toronto Etsy Street Team had a big presence at the Queen West Art Crawl on the weekend! Thanks to Etsy, we had our own tent, staffed with 6 of our sellers over two days, and many members had there own tents to showcase their handmade wares. Here are some of the TESTy people we saw!

T.E.S.T. tent
The TEST tent on Sunday! Check out our banner - it's a sneak peek of our new logo by TEST's own Michelle of thunderpeep!

Landfill DesignsLandfill Designs
Emma of LandfillDesigns

Rob of Robert Rat Prints

Manko Stone Art
Manko Stone Art

Tara Gilchrist
Tara of taragilchrist

Girl Can Create
Lisa of Girl Can Create

Elle Cools

Ashley of AshleyWinningtonBall

stitch and spoke
Linda of stitch and spoke

aTana Designs
Wendy of aTanaDesigns

Jack & Willa Designs
Melissa of jack and willa designs

Penny of the polished penny


Modish Laundry
Pris of Modish Laundry

Amanda of JeweLust

Knotted Nest
Kristen of knotted nest

Avril Loreti
Avril of avrilloreti

Margaret of magprint

KemptonJones & BaitedHook
Saskia of Baited Hook and Michelle of Kempton Jones

Though it got a little overcast and occasionally the wind was gusty on Saturday, Sunday was gorgeous and thousands of people came out to see the show. We hope it was a great success for all our sellers, and that everyone who made it out left with something beautiful and handmade to love.

A big thanks to Etsy (& Nada in particular) for sponsoring QWAC and sharing their second tent with TEST! They were out to spread the word about the handmade market place to all the art and craft buyers, lovers and makers in Toronto and hosting some great (free!) workshops to get everyone working with their hands.

Queen West Art Crawl this weekend!

Wednesday, September 12, 2012

The 10th Queen West Art Crawl is September 14 to 16! The Outdoor Art Show and Sale in Trinity-Bellwoods Park (which is midway from Ossington to Bathurst, and all the way from Queen St to Dundas St) will be running on Saturday, September 15 to Sunday, September 16, from 11am - 6pm.
The main hub of the Queen West Art Crawl, the OASS is a two-day juried art exhibition featuring over 250 artists, food vendors, community booths, an exciting entertainment stage and our family friendly Kidz Zone!

Amongst those 250 artists and many great test members including Magaret of magprint, Leila of ellecools, Rob of robertratprints, Penny of ThePolishedPenny, Tara of taragilchrist, Lisa of GirlCanCreate, Avril of avrilloreti, Danielle of Dolorous, Emma of Landfilldesigns, Kristen of knotted nest, Ashley of AshleyWinningtonBall, , Nick of Manko Stone Art and knotted nest! We will also have our own Toronto Etsy Street Team tent, thanks to Etsy! The tent will include TESTy wares from Amanda of JeweLust, Pris of Modish Laundry and Ele of minouette on Saturday, and from Linda of stitch and spoke, Wendy of aTana Designs, and Melissa of Jack and Willa Designs on Sunday! Etsy will have their own tent with some fabulous FREE workshops too!

Come check out all the wonderful handmade items and enjoy a beautiful day in the park!

(Are you a TESTy vendor we accidentally omitted? Let us know and we'll add you to our list!)

Danforth East Arts Fair this weekend!

September 15 and 16, 10 am to 5 pm in East Lynn Park on the Danforth, near Woodbine!

There will be more than 50 handmakers, including TEST's own Michelle of thunderpeep, Katie from yourheartshaven, Natalie of Fragmentalists and Pam of lurearts, food and music and more!

Come by and check it out!

(If you are another TESTy vendor, let us know!)

Kid Icarus campaign

T.E.S.T. member Kid Icarus not only produces handmade, screenprinted items, they run a brick and mortar shop "in the heart of Kensington Market" with a screen print studio and retail. They stock "the best in contemporary handcraft, focusing on paper products, local talent, and unique design," they let people see the screenprinting in action and they run workshops. They've started an indiegogo campaign to raise $10,000 to help them expand and offer more facilities, right here in Toronto. Check out their campaign and consider whether you would like to contribute. There are some great perks offered to donors!

"Our campaign is to take what we have built, and bring it up to its true potential. A financial bridge is needed to help us:
  • Move into a new space and retail shop where we can continue to expand and foster the arts and crafts community
  • Heighten awareness of traditional print methods and the visual artists who work with these antiquated and time honoured traditions.
  • Foster local and regional handcraft especially via workshops and talks
  • Provide space for other professional screen printers to access our equipment and create. "

Toronto Etsy Workshop

Friday, September 7, 2012

A message from Nada our Canadian Etsy Admin:

Attention Toronto Makers!

Our Brooklyn admin are in town and they'd love to invite you to an Etsy workshop! We'll be breaking down the basics of selling on Etsy and tips for success.

This is a great opportunity to get your questions answered and meet other Etsians in your neighbourhood! Improve your shop and make some new friends, sounds good to us! Our friends at Uniiverse have generously donated the space, and we're thrilled to join forces with them on this event. Bring your notebooks, business cards and questions, we're looking forward to meeting you.

Please note, space is limited, you will sign in upon arrival so bring your RSVPs!

Where -

Uniiverse HQ (Upstairs)
111 Jarvis St,
Toronto, ON
M5C 2T9

When -

Wednesday, Sept 19th, 6pm-9pm

To RSVP go to the listing on Uniiverse or on eventbrite.
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