Thursday, January 19, 2012


  • How or why did you get started with your craft/business? When my daughter was a baby, I found myself frustrated and unhappy with store bought clothing. The stuff from the big box stores were poorly made and just didn't seem like they would last through much wear and tear. The clothing from  boutique-style stores was just too expensive for something that would be spit up on (or worse), then shortly outgrown. I also didn't want to be afraid to let her play out of fear of ruining an expensive outfit. My other issue was that everywhere we went, there was always at least one other girl in the exact same outfit. I have always loved creating my own style (which is much easier for adults since there are so many more places to shop for clothing), and I wanted the same for my little girl. It occurred to me that I solve my clothing problem by making affordable, stylish, durable garments myself. I got a lot of comments about her clothes, and after several suggestions that I start selling my creations, Sweet Child of Mine was born.
  • Is there a story behind the name of your shop? I wanted something memorable that reflected my love of children. My daughter's nickname is Sweets so I wanted to incorporate that, and came up with Sweet Child of Mine.
  • What has been the most rewarding thing about running your own shop? The  most rewarding thing is getting to do something I love and being able make others happy with my clothing. I also love being able to help out children in need by donating at least 10% of my sales to charities that benefit children.
  • What has been the hardest? The hardest thing is trying to distinguish myself from the many other wonderful Etsy shops out there selling children's clothing.
  • Do you have a specific schedule during the day you follow while working on your craft, or do you fit it your work in whenever you can throughout the day? I mostly sew in the evenings after dinner. When I get small breaks during the day, I work on editing photos, adding and editing listings,  answering e-mails, updating my business Facebook page.
  • What is your most favorite item to create? My favorite items to create are custom orders for birthday outfits. I love that I can be a part of making their day special.
  • If you have children, how do you manage everything (being a mom, running a shop, etc)? I try to get all of my housework done in the morning and early afternoon. I take breaks and play with the kids. Then after dinner and my husband goes to work, I go downstairs to sew. The kids usually go with me and play with their toys, and they like to watch me and sometimes they even sit on my lap while I sew. My kids always come first. I don't always have the perfect balance between sewing and housework. If I get a lot of orders or I'm closing in on a deadline to get my shop stocked before a holiday, sometimes the dishes and laundry start to pile up. It's even more challenging now that I'm near the end of my pregnancy, because some days I'm just exhausted.
  • Where do you create (your own room, a corner of the kitchen, in a pile on the dining room floor, etc)? I have a large room downstairs where I sew, There is enough room that my kids can play (and even ride their tricycle).
  • What is your favorite color? Do you find yourself using it often in your crafting? My favorite color is green. I don't specifically use it more than any other color. Most of the clothing I make is holiday-specific, and I usually let my daughter choose some of the fabrics.
  • How do you spread the word about your shop? The best thing I've done as far as promoting my shop goes is to join the EtsyKids Team. There are over 600 member who work together and promote each other's shops. I also promote through my blog and Facebook pages. I've also participated in giveaways on other blogs. Locally, I promote by word of mouth. I carry business cards in my purse and when people ask where my kids' clothes came from, I tell them and give them a card. I also make clothing as gifts for my friends' kids and my nieces and nephews. Of course my main reason is because I think handmade gifts are more thoughtful, but if word gets out about my business, then it's a bonus.
  • Are you a morning person or a night owl? I'm definitely a night owl, and luckily my kids seem to be too. 
  • Do you listen to music while you work? If so, what do you listen to? I don't listen to music while I work since I'm usually interacting with my kids. 
  • Where do you see yourself and your shop in the next year? Five years? In the next year, I'd love to have grown my business to the point where I have a more steady income. In five years, I'd like to have enough business that running my shop is my full-time job. My dream would be for the business to be our family's sole source of income.
  • Any advice you would give to someone considering opening their own shop? My advice to a new shop owner would be to try to find something that sets them apart from the competition. Another thing is to join a team on Etsy. It's a great way to network and get help from experienced shop owners. Read the merchandising reports that Etsy puts out, and tag your items with any relevant keywords from the reports to get your items found in searches and chosen for treasuries. Lastly, show respect for other Etsy sellers and do not copy designs or patterns from other sellers. 

Monday, January 16, 2012

Tie Tying Tutorial (say that 5 times fast!)

Our ties have quickly become one of our hottest items! To save paper (and who keeps the stuff that comes with the package anyway?) I'm putting the instructions online.

Step 1: Lay the tie and band pieces perpendicular with the tie piece on top of the center of the band as pictured (narrow end at the top). For a longer tie, move the tie piece toward the narrow end of the tie piece and for a shorter tie, move the band down toward the wide end of the tie piece.

Step 2: Fold the narrow end of the tie piece down behind the band.

Step 3: Fold the narrow end of the tie piece over the wide end. This is a good time to make sure the tie piece is centered on the band piece and is the desired length.

Step 4: Fold the narrow end of the tie piece up and behind the neck band. 

Back View

Step 5: Bring the narrow end in front of the neck band.

Step 6: Pull the narrow end down behind the wider end of the tie piece.

Step 7: Hold the knot and pull the narrow end down until it's tight. It may not look right at this stage, but that's ok.

Step 8:  Pull the ends of the neck band straight out, and it should look like this:

The neck band has an extra long velcro closure to achieve a perfect fit for a variety of sizes. The length can be adjusted from 10 to 16 inches. Combined with the adjustable neck band, these ties will grow with your little guy.

Sunday, January 15, 2012

Sweet Child of Mine Update

I'm excited to announce that we will be adding Sweet Child number three to our family in March! I will be closing the shop for custom orders on March 10th (subject to change if the little one decides to make an early entrance), so all Easter orders will have to be received by that date. Valentine's Day and St. Patrick's Day orders will not be affected. The store will remain open for in-stock orders which will ship out within two business days. I will do my best to stock as many sizes and fabric selections as possible.

Current turn-around time for custom orders is 10 business days.