22 June 2010

Happy Birthday, Etsy!

Last Friday (18 June 2010) was Etsy's craft party in celebration of their 5th Birthday. I had never been to one of their craft parties before, so I wasn't sure what to expect. Also, I neglected to bring my camera. (sad trumpet sound here). Needless to say, it was lots of fun & I definitely hope to make their craft parties a part of my regular social repertoire.

The party was held at the "Etsy Lab", as they call their offices in Brooklyn, New York. In addition to the DJ & snax (they provided a yummy spread to round out the tasty nibbles that partygoers brought to share), there were several stations set up with supplies for assorted craft projects, sitting areas, a photostation, & lots of crafty people for hobnobbing, networking, and sundry hanging-out-with.

I think my favorite 'craft station' was the Screen Printing project, wherein one had the opportunity to screen print one's very own Etsy tote bag! The Etsy staffers were super helpful & friendly in assisting all the people who wanted to make their very own must-have bag of summer. Here is mine, and the uppermost pic on this post is the imprint (pre-printed on every bag) on the other side of the bag. It's really a generous size, ample for carrying any of the craft supplies an Etsy seller or patron would likely need to schlep all over town. The strap is a good size, too; it fits comfortably over my giant man-shoulder. Just kidding; my man-shoulder isn't really giant.

The buttonmaking table offered another simple-yet-fun craft. I had never operated a button press before & either it's more complicated than you'd expect, or I'm not so good with following directions. It's probably a combination of the two (but really it's likely mostly the latter). Whatever the source of the kerfuffle (which I narrowly escaped from with my life!), the result was the cute & commemorative 1" button above. 

I picked up the additional buttons (shown above) at the registration table because who doesn't love schwag? I know I do! Other craft stations included an opportunity to make your own party hat (I didn't partake; I really don't have hat-face), mini bunting banners, and a glass-painting station to decorate your very own glass candle holder. Besides the schwag, though, it was really inspiring & reassuring to meet other crafty folks (like Jenny of OverallBaby) who had an idea & ran with it. Aside from the sheer gumption & drive that it takes to create a small business where the focus is something that one really enjoys, I think it's incredibly hopeful to remember that this was Etsy's 5th birthday, & they're still growing!

I don't currently have an Etsy shop, though I've been toying with the idea, & there's nothing like meeting awesome creative people who have done it to give one a push in that direction!

As I wrap this post up, I want to assure you that, yes, the fabric background in a couple of the pictures is, indeed, shiny. It's also stretch fabric. Somehow, in all of my fabric-shopping adventures, I managed to never choose anything that appeals to the photographer in me as "appropriate" for a photo backdrop. The shiny stretchy remnant that I bought to make into doll pants was the best I could find.


"First World Problems", as they say.

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