Monday, April 20, 2015

Artist Showcase - Gras Groen

Welcome to this week's Artist Showcase.  Our artist is Moniek of Gras Groen (As Green As Grass in Dutch).  Moniek sells handmade organic baby and toddler clothing.

Tell us a little about yourself and your creative business.

I'm from Breda, the Netherlands and I sell organic baby and toddler clothes in my shop GrasGroen (As Green As Grass in Dutch). First of all I get a lot of energy out of making people happy. And I know how much fun it is to receive a handmade organic garment. One of the reasons I opened my Etsy shop was to make people happy. I’ve chosen to make kids' clothes, the ones which are ‘green as grass.’ In addition, I think environmental issues are very important to take into account for businesses worldwide.

How did you get your start?

I started on Etsy as a happy buyer of homemade organic kids clothing for my son. The thought that somebody had sewn the clothes I ordered at their own house with so much love always made me very happy. I always loved to create things on my own. I have sewn since I was around 12 years old. To combine these two, I recently took the step to open my own shop on Etsy. And I do love it!

Where do you get your inspiration?

My inspiration mostly comes from the companies which make and sell the fabrics I use. Everytime they post new fabrics online, I get lots of ideas. It is more difficult to cut the ideas in my head and to turn them into achievable sewing options instead of making new ideas! And besides that, Etsy itself is the biggest source of inspiration!

What has been your biggest successful moment so far?

I think every purchase is as important as another. Every shirt, pair of pants, hoodie or dress I make, is a special item for the person who buys it. They’ve chosen to spend their money on something unique. For that reason it is important for me to continuously think about my clients and the experience they have purchasing from my shop.

What challenges do you face selling online?

Because I only use organic cotton which is mostly GOTS certified, my choices in fabrics are limited. I do think this GOTS certificate is very important. It means on-site inspection and certification of processors, manufacturers and traders performed by independent specially accredited bodies is the basis of the GOTS monitoring system in order to provide a credible assurance for the integrity of GOTS certified textiles. Besides the options are not limitless, my fabrics are all of the best quality and therefore costly. So the biggest challenge of my shop will be to get even financially.

What advice would you give someone just starting out on Etsy?

Don’t think selling online is easy. Selling online is just as difficult as offline. If the online world is not familiar to you, it would even be harder. In my daily life I work as a communications adviser and therefore I know some ins and outs about the online world and how it connects to our offline world. Some knowledge about it helps you to operate in it correctly. It helps to really make a connection to real people, instead of to your screen at home. And that is eventually your goal: connect to people.

Thank you Moniek for sharing your story with us.  Next week we'll select another Etsy artist to showcase.  If you would like to be considered, just drop me or Zoica a note via Etsy convo.

Thanks for stopping by...

Until next time,

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