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Maker’s Dozen:
12 Alternatives to Selling Handmade Goods Online

Young Soul—Big Ambition—Musician and Author, Charlotte Eriksson

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Conversations like this make me wishful and proud of the future. Today I'm talking with a very enterprising and creative young woman who is forging a path of no rules. Charlotte Eriksson is European musician, song writer, and author who reached out to me for an opportunity to come on the show. When I started looking deeper into who she was, and what she was about, I knew that you would appreciate her story. Right out of high school, she left her home in Sweden for London to become a song writer. Even with all the doubts of her family and friends, she charged ahead and made a name for herself. Still in her early twenties, Charlotte has a long life to lead, but she's fortunate to have found the passions in her life that drive her soul, and she's doing everything she can to make her dreams a reality. I have no doubt we'll see more from Charlotte in the future. If you don't want to go out and make cool stuff after this episode, then we've done something wrong. Relative … [Read more...]

May Q&A Episode

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It's the time again, and we get into some heavy hitting questions that I may or may not have all the right answers for. We dig deep on some of these, and there is plenty of conversation around things I know you have been thinking about. It's a long one today, so let's kick this off. Make sure you visit the links at the bottom for everything we referenced in this episode. The Questions We have a wide range of topics this time around. We talk about the validity of craft shows, how to market to unfamiliar markets, and what would I do if I could not use my creativity? Lots to talk about, so let's get on with it. James I like to do children's and themed murals but would like to get into bigger stuff. My goal is to be 100% freelance. I've done six 700+ sq ft murals last year and two restaurant murals and a current project now. What is the best way to grow this business model? Jamie I recently started painting. What I started as just a little "Canvas Therapy" has now grabbed the … [Read more...]

How Academy of Handmade Gained 10k Instagram Followers in a Year

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Some of you may remember my chat from a few years back with Sharon Fain, and her partner KC, of the Academy of Handmade, which is still in our top ten of most downloaded episodes. Sharon and I have become pretty good friends over the past few years, and we've watched our businesses grow quite a bit. One area that Sharon has really grown a lot is with her Instagram account, over 10,000 followers in a little more than a year. This had a huge impact on me recently because I realized I was not putting enough effort into this medium, and it was time to make a change. By implementing Sharon's strategies, I was able to increase my own account by 30% in a month. I know that I could have probably gotten further if I had spent more time on it, but I do have a podcast to run. I know a lot of you have been wanting to know more about how to navigate Instagram successfully, and that inspired me to invite Sharon on to talk about the subject. She spares no time getting right into the nitty … [Read more...]

A Valid Alternative to Etsy is Here!

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You may not have heard of Aftcra.com, but I promise, you will want to take a look, because they are doing things with artists and makers that should have been done a long time ago, when Etsy began to lose their way in the handmade world. Erica, inspired by a need to help a family member make a name for themselves, and give them a way to sell quality, handmade goods to a local clientele. Riegelman believes that if we can get back to a point where American buyers buy from American sellers, it could inspire a true creative revolution. Aftcra is not trying to become the next Etsy, but fill the hole left behind by the juggernaut marketplace. They way they make that happen is by getting more sellers like you involved. Listen in as I grill her on all the nuanced aspects of what it takes to sell successfully on the platform, and how to incorporate this platform into your program. Relative Links Aftcra.com Download the Maker's Dozen FREE Shop Reference: I Heart Fink Buy art … [Read more...]

How to Build, Burn, and Rebuild a Supportive Community

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The people of Nepal need our help. Please donate to this fund: http://www.gofundme.com/earthquakelaprak ===  •  === Nearly two years ago, I embarked on a experimental journey to broadcast my thoughts across the digital airwaves so that I could lend support to the creative community that I had come to love. This podcast started out as a way to reach out to that community, but it soon became the hub of everything I do with my business. My first two episodes were me doing my solo thing—ranting and kicking ass. However, I knew I wanted to start talking to people, and I had a list of individuals who I wanted to interview. Near the top of that list was Srini Rao, the voice of The Unmistakable Creative (formerly BlogCastFM), and one of the best interviewers I had run across. I liked his style, and his viewpoint on the creative pursuit, so he was the natural choice to have on the show. That interview was one of my favorites, and I still get the occasional comment on it. So, when Srini … [Read more...]

The Brush Strokes of a Creative Life, With Kal Barteski

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If you've been tracking my movements lately, you've probably see plenty of my frantic script on various pictures across blog posts and the Instagram feed. Since being more in tune with the art of hand-lettering, I've found plenty of people doing great work. One of the pioneers of this expressive new world is Kal Barteski, a polar bear loving Canadian who is as handy with a Sumi brush as surgeon a scalpel. Originally I anticipated my conversation with Kal to be about lettering and Instagram, but when I hit her with a couple of heavy philosophical questions right out of the gate, it turned into a deep conversation about the soul of expressive art and typography. We bonded over mutual respect for icons like David Carson and Basquiat, and she indulged my curiosity on her fascination of polar bears. It's a great conversation that inspired us to promise another one in the future. I think you'll agree. Relative Links Kal Barteski Kal's Instagram Her TEDx talk on Polar … [Read more...]