Tuesday, 29 March 2016

my ring collection

If you know me, you know I have a problem, I have SO MANY RINGS! People always joke that I need more fingers, and it's getting to the point that even with rings double stacked on every finger, plus midi rings I probably have enough rings to wear a different set each day for a month, that's a ring for almost every day of the year...

It all started after designosaur, before designosaur I was the statement necklace queen (I still am kinda) but as a small business owner wearing your own jewellery is a great conversation starter, and people are really disappointed if you're not wearing your own jewels! So rings are a good way of wearing loads of beautiful jewels by other makers, as I can wear them all at once, including a few designosaur ones too! 

I wanted to share some of my favourites from my collection, so here goes!

More than thirty rings right here! The bigger the better, I find sterling silver or plastic rings the best as they don't discolour from hand washing! (always keeping it real)

From Left to right | Me and Zena - Spin the Bottle Ring | Lazy Oaf - Fun Ring | Little Raymond - Tutankhamen Ring | Partially Obscured - Green Fused Glass Ring | 

N2 - Leopard Ring 

From Left to right | Cheap Frills - Eye Ring | Rock Cakes - I'd rather be watching TV Ring | Spirit Level Ring - Carolyn Forsman

From Left to right | Me and Zena - Rainbow Knuckle Duster | designosaur - Unicorn Ring

From Left to right | Pylones - Liquid Ring | Me and Zena x Saatchi - Paint Can Ring | designosaur Lichtenstein inspired Ring Me and Zena - Monkey Ring

From Left to right | Pussy Home Boutique - Bells Ring | Little Moose - 'Don't Be Square' Ring | designosaur - dinosaur stacking rings

designosaur - Bauhaus inspired ring

I have no idea who any of these are by! Help!

designosaur - Enamel Dinosaur Ring

From Left to right | I Am Acrylic - Cheese Ring (made especially for me!) | Rock Cakes - Squirrel Ring and sat infront of that, a little nut ring, also by Rock Cakes! (sterling silver, rose gold plated)


I hope you enjoyed having a nose at what hangs out on my fingers, do you have a large jewellery colleciton? We'd love to see it!



Tuesday, 22 March 2016

7 Tips on How to Build a Successful Etsy Team

A couple of weekends ago I was invited to my eighth Captains' Summit and I told along one of my team leaders Judite from Juream Box. If you want to read about it you can check that post on the Brighton Etsy Team Blog.

I thought I'd write something a bit different here, as I have written about past summits, here, here, and here. Each one is completely unique and I gain so much from each event. And it appears the whole country, and maybe the world (I did go to Australia for a Summit ;) ) know about the Brighton Etsy Team and what we do, because usually at each summit someone asks me about building an Etsy team.

So I thought I'd share some tips if you're a newbie captain, or you want to set up your own team. Please remember that ALL teams are different so these are only guidelines!

1. Be prepared to work really hard.

I'm not going to lie, being an Etsy Team Captain is a second full time job. I work on the team every single day, emails come in, events need planning, social media needs updating, the list goes on. If you have enough time for two jobs, and live and breathe Etsy, then this is definitely the role for you, if not maybe you're more suited to being a leader or a really active team member!

2. Get an awesome team of leaders behind you.

You can't do it alone! As I mentioned before this is a full time job but to stop you going completely crazy you're going to need to delegate as much as possible. I currently have a team of eight leaders and I think there is always room for more but we can cope with less too. These people are people that you hunt out, they have the skills you want, be that, graphic designers, accountants, social media gurus, or PR managers. Stalk people online, make friends with them, and then force them to join your gang! You can also do an open call but make sure the people you pick also align with your values and they understand the amount of work they are signing up for. For free!

3. Set some goals.

So you've now got you, you've got a gang of leaders, but what are you doing? What's the purpose of your team? You need to sit down and set some goals. You could start small with "We are going to run monthly meet ups" or put in some big things to work towards like "Running our first market together". These goals should be public (there's a space on the Etsy Teams page to post them) so that when new members join the team, they know what they are signing up for. You should also review these regularly to check you're on track, or in case your end goals have changed.

4. Don't be afraid to ask for help.

You've got a team of leaders who are smashing it, but if you're running an event and you need somebody to run a workshop, or somebody to do a talk, reach out to your team members! As a captain it's really important to be aware of who is in your team and what they do, so that when you need a crochet expert, or a paper cutting queen, you know where to look! I always contact team members directly, drowning them in compliments before asking them to do a teeny tiny favour for the team. I've not been rejected yet!

5. Shoot for the moon

For me, the whole point of a team is to take on projects that you wouldn't be able to do with just your own business. Be it a Pop Up Shop or a PR day, if it's something you haven't done before then even better! Stretch yourself, do something new, you've got a great bunch of people to make mistakes with if nothing else.

6. Be so positive it makes other people sick.

If you can only see the negatives then you won't be a successful leader, and that's what a Captain is. The team want to look up to you, be inspired by you so you've got to be eternally positive. This comes down to being a great problem solver, more people turn up to a meeting than your expecting, easy - break the meeting up into smaller chats lead by your team leaders. Way less people turn up to a meeting than you were expecting - easy, make everything much more personal, you could even do a one on one shop critique!

7. Say things out-loud.

You make your own luck. Being lucky comes down to working really hard, and people noticing. So if you have an idea, say it out loud, there's no point it being in your head, some of my craziest ideas I've said out-loud and they've had legs, whether that be your dream venue for a market or a grand advertising scheme that you thought only massive corporate companies could afford!

So there you go, something a bit different for this here blog, and hopefully a bit of an insight into what it takes to be a captain.

If you'd like me to write more Etsy/ Captain/ Team related content let me know in the comments or tweet, instagram or even SNAPCHAT [username 'designosaurYEAH'] me.



Photo Credit | Oh Someday and Georgie St Clair