Tell us a bit about your self!
Hi, I'm Melanie and I'm a craft-a-holic. I'm a 30-something wife and SAHM with an almost 4 year old daughter. (How did that happen? Where did the time go?! I can't believe my little one is growing this fast!) I have a degree in Photography with specialization in portraiture, but currently only do portrait sessions a couple times per year for friends and family. My passion has become making art with fabric in the form of hair accessories and hoop art decor pieces. My hobbies are reading, photography, cooking, and gardening. I blog about recipes and crafts, and I love to share other small businesses and crafters. I am passionate about animal rescue, and before my daughter was born my husband and I volunteered as a dog foster family with a local pit bull rescue group. I hope someday to be able to volunteer again.
Tell us a bit about your Shop...
When my daughter was an infant I wanted her to have lots of cute hair accessories and after buying several, I decided to try to make my own. I quickly fell in love with creating and made gifts for my nieces and other friends. With the encouragement of friends and family, I started Violet's Buds around my daughter's 1st birthday. During the first year, I started making more accessories out of reclaimed, repurposed, and upcycled materials. I found buttons and jewelry at garage sales and thrift stores, and was given or traded for remnant fabrics. I am able to make unique pieces, however it does limit most of them to one or two of a kind. Violet's Buds will be 3 in March, and over the course of this time I've added hair accessories for all ages (because all women deserve to look good), fabric jewelry, lapel pins, wedding accessories, and hair bow holders. Most recently I have added hoop art decor to my line of accessories.
What is your favorite thing to make?Right now, I'm in love with making hoop art. It allows me to use different materials, colors, and styles that wouldn't necessarily work in a hair clip. I also really enjoy making custom orders for people. I love turning their idea into something tangible.
What is the hardest part of owning an online shop for you?
The hardest part for me is staying organized. I've finally found a system of storing my inventory that keeps it protected while making it easy for me to access. I am bad at keeping my supplies organized since I like to drag out lots of stuff to see what choices I have. My goal this year is to work on organizing my supplies, cleaning as I go, and make a schedule for myself. Its easy to get sucked into the computer and get distracted when I should be listing products or marketing.
Do you have any advice on owning your own online business?
First, know that you aren't alone. We all struggle to get started, and keep going. I would highly recommend finding a community of like-minded crafters, either online or in person, to become a part of. It is so important to have a good support system with people that will build you up, allow you to bounce ideas around, and have fun. Also, plan to spend as much time, if not more, on the marketing, advertising and promotion of your shop as you do the creating. Social media is a key tool in meeting and interacting with potential customers. Owning your own online business can be challenging but if you join a community (Storenvy Community Group on Facebook is a great one!) it definitely makes the challenge easier. With others, you can learn the basics and other tips and tricks to succeed!
Thank you so much Melanie! It was so fun learning more things about you and your shop. You can find Violet's Buds on Storenvy | Facebook | Blog | Twitter | Pinterest Go ahead and stop by and tell her 'Hello' and share some handmade love.