Wednesday, November 9, 2011

Feature Shop: Baby Swank

Team member Meagan Visser is a busy mom of two expecting her third in December! She runs Etsy shop Baby Swank, where she sells handmade, eco-friendly items for babies and toddlers, and coaches other work-at-home-moms on her coaching blog, MeaganVisser.com. Thanks for sharing your story, Meagan! -Cori of Peace, Baby! Batiks

What is your name? 
Meagan Visser

Where are you located?
I live in the beautiful Southern Appalachian Mountains of East Tennessee in a little town called Butler. We’re very rural, and it’s just perfect for us. I wouldn’t want to live anywhere else!

Tell us a little about yourself.
I’m a SAHM to two boys ages 3 and 18 months. We’re expecting our third baby this December, and yes, it’s another boy! I’m so blessed! LOL! I’m married to my high school sweetheart although he was homeschooled. I love living and learning about the natural life, using herbs, being self-sufficient, and making things for my family.

Mini Bath Bombs

What type of merchandise will shoppers find in your shop?
I offer fashionable and eco-friendly products for babies and toddlers. That includes my OOAK handmade baby and toddler bibs called Washcloth Bibs, cloth flannel baby wipes, and a new line of natural skin care products.

How/why did you start your business?
I started my shop as a creative outlet when my kiddos were small. I’m always doing creative things and I thought that I’d give selling them a try for fun and extra money. It took me a while to come up with something that I thought was unique and original enough to create a business around, but once I found that, it seemed like everything else just fell into place.

Crocheted Scrubbie - 3 Pack

How long have you been crafting?
I’d say I’ve been seriously crafting since I was in high school. At least that’s when I really got interested in it. I’ve always loved to make things, but I don’t think I realized how crafting was actually a part of life and that you can make so many things that you can use.

What is your favorite thing to make?
I love making any kind of handmade gifts for people! I think it’s seeing their reactions when they open a gift and know that I’ve spend time and energy making it just for them.

What are your favorite materials to work with?
Wow, I have so many. It’s hard for me to narrow it down into just a few. I’m one of those people who wants to be well-rounded and wants to learn all kinds of ways of crafting. I love to sew, I love to decorate cakes, I love to make herbal products, I love to crochet, and I dabble in jewelry making and ceramics a bit. I’m sure there’s more, too!

Baby Bib Pack

What inspires you to create?
I think seeing beautiful things gives me inspiration, whether it’s another product or a color palette or a stunning photo. Even hearing someone talk about something they’d like or need can bring on inspiration. I want to recreate it in my own way to fit my needs or to create something that will fit someone else’s needs.

What is one thing you need to have with you while you craft?
I don’t think I have anything in particular that I need to have with me. I do need my space to be clutter free, but that’s about it. I like being organized and prepared so if I start something, I want all the unnecessary junk out of my way and I want everything I’ll need within reach!

Baby Gift Basket

How do you balance mothering and running a small business?
Oh that can be a challenge! Besides running my Etsy shop, I also run a coaching website for mompreneurs – MeaganVisser.com - and that’s something that I know a lot of moms struggle with. I’m not perfect at it by any means!

To start off with, I know my priorities and they’re set in stone. Family first! I fit my business into my life, not my life into my business. Yes, I want to be successful, but successful to me is having a happy, well-cared-for family and doing what I love. There are times that I need to step back and refocus, but that’s normal and it’s a good thing.

I’d say the things that work best for me is to have a daily routine and do my best at sticking to a schedule. I try not to overwhelm myself by having too many “to-dos” each day. I’d rather under schedule my day, than to over schedule it. I get done what I need to during my work times and if for some reason I have extra time, great! I’ll do some more. I also schedule in times for my children’s school {we homeschool}, lunch, cleaning and family time. Some days are more rushed and things get skipped depending on what all I have to do, but for the most part we do well with everything!

Sample Pack - (3) 2 oz Sample Sizes

What is your favorite thing to browse Etsy for?
I love looking for gifts for people and I love finding beautiful treasuries to share.

When you're not crafting, what are you doing?
Probably teaching my little guys, spending time with friends and family, cooking/cleaning, sleeping, etc.

Where can we find you? (Etsy link, blog, Facebook, Twitter, stores, etc.)
Etsy Shop: http://babyswank.etsy.com
MeaganVisser.com: http://meaganvisser.com
Baby Swank Blog: http://babyswank.blogspot.com
Facebook: http://facebook.com/EtsyBabySwank
Twitter: http://twitter.com/MeaganVisser

What is your favorite shop (not yours) on Etsy currently?
Oooh, tough…I have so many! I’d say my newest favorite find would be The Cozy Project {thecozyproject.etsy.com} because I love coffee and herbal teas and she has the cutest, most creative cozies for your cups!

3 comments:

  1. Way to go Meagan! It amazes me that Meagan can get all this done while being pregnant!

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  2. Thanks so much for the interview!

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