Dear loyal, wonderful Etsy and non-Etsy customers,
It is with great excitement and joy that I announce upcoming changes to my life and business.
I started my company in 2001 because I knew that re-entering the job market (after staying at home to have and raise babies) would be challenging at best. And having had 3 kids in less than 4 years, one of whom is special needs, a full-time job was out of the question for my family. So having been out of the workforce and looking for a part-time job became impossible when the economy took a nosedive in 2008.
I started with the jewelry business which is the last industry to recover in the recession. I had success with handmade clutches as well. It gave me flexibility to work at home and carve time to take my kids to school, activities, and therapies as needed. After reading scam after scam for stay-at-home moms (selling vitamins, stuffing envelopes, beading … you name it), I was appalled by the vultures out there targeting women who needed to make some side income via a home-based job. Feeling so blessed, I started to teach other women to learn this skill and provide the best supplies needed to start their own businesses with a very low start-up cost.
My business grew exponentially when I opened that business up to the world of Etsy. Here is a market of craftspeople who were entrepreneurial, artistic, visionary, and hard-working! With the growth on the Esty venue, I really focused my efforts in helping my handbag makers hone their skills, improve their marketing and sales venues, and I really strove to earn and keep their business. The customer service aspect of my shop is 90% of the job. Filling the orders really did not take my time: answering convos, emails, and blogging took away the bulk of my time. I do a lot of research and with my experience, I know a lot about the clutch handbag business. I continue to pass this knowledge on (e.g trends with frames with loops and chains) and blog about it.
But I wouldn’t have had this success and start if it hadn’t been for my sister, Y (pronounced EE), who told me and introduced me to Etsy a couple of years ago. She told me about this amazing venue and it was through her that I first heard about it.
My husband just got promoted to do marketing for his company in another country and we are excited to be moving our family for his new assignment. We will be moving to Viet Nam and live there for 3 years. It’ll be a cultural shock for him and the kids, I’m sure, and I’ll have my hands full moving our entire household.
That said, Y flew up here from Florida this week and has been working with me to fill your orders and learn about the business. She will be in charge of the order fulfillment, packaging, shipping and all customer service questions related with your orders.
I will handle all marketing and sales as it relates to the business.
Y will handle all operational aspects (shipping out orders).
How this will effect you:
It really shouldn’t at all.
You place an order, you receive your order, and your frames are still the same fine metal purse frames that has a 30-day FULL REFUND guarantee.
You will continue to convo me via Etsy or at my company’s email address that appears with every order.
The ONLY difference that you might see are:
*Any questions as related to the orders (e.g. did my order go through? when did you ship it? will I get my refund?) will be answered by Y as it should since she is the one getting the orders and shipping them out.
*Any custom listing for new orders will also be done by Y as it should since, again, she is in charge of shipping out the orders.
What’s the same:
* The 90% of the business that I have been providing: all the blogging, marketing of your business, sales and market place trends … everything that I spend so much time doing.
I will continue to be on Etsy daily. I will continue to be the voice, driver, and owner of WhileBabyNaps.Etsy.com, WhileBabyNaps.com, and Khuong LLC. The voice you hear will be mine.
*Starting Feb. 1 all orders will be shipped from Y’s home studio in Florida. You will see the return address coming from FL so all orders with a ship-to address of FL and NJ will be taxed accordingly.
*My other shop OhClutchMe.Etsy.com which had been featuring Y’s clutches has been put on vacation mode since her arrival here this week. (Anyone notice that she was no longer listed as a seller on the Sellers page?) She will no longer sell her clutches on Etsy as her style is really targeted for her local area and shops.
*The OhClutchMe.Etsy.com will become my demo shop. What this means is I will use that shop to showcase clutches that can be made from my frames. One of my top questions is “what does this frame make?” “what will the finished clutch look like?” So I will be making clutches and listing it on that shop only as demo products. Note that this is not yet set in stone, as there’s lots to do before I even get to there and there are only 24 hours in a day! 🙂
My business slogan has always been “Putting Women in Business” and based on my own history that you now know, that’s what I will continue to strive to do. All of my life’s work will be in helping other women, regardless of their personal circumstances, learn a skill that they can make money and is flexible enough for them to raise kids, perhaps work another job, or have other familial obligations.
I know that it takes money to make money. And if you are short on cash to start with, how are you ever going to make money? That’s why learning to make clutches with its low start-up cost is a do-able business. Entry fees for craft shows are often under $100. There are often no fees for church or school fundraisers.
I will keep you abreast on any and all developments as I have done in the past. While in Viet Nam, my plan is to source unique fabrics (e.g embroidered silks) that can only be found in Viet Nam for my customers here on Etsy to make unique, beautiful clutches.
Please email or convo me with your comments or concerns. Until the next blog or convo, I want to thank you all for your wonderful, loyal, and supportive business. I hope to keep earning your business.
And introducing … my sister, Y!