How connected do you feel to nature? Do you ever just find yourselves lost in the vast realm of Mother Nature and its wondrous creations? It certainly has a charming effect on our minds, bodies, and souls. It’s also a source of inspiration for artists all over the world, who not only interpret nature in their own ways but it’s also a means of self-expression for some.
Meet Megan from FernandPineCo, for our conversation with another successful Etsy shop, whose love and admiration for nature is pretty much evident in her art. Have a look at her shop and you’ll know what we’re talking about. Read on to know her story.
Your shop has such a positive feel to it. Please tell us, how did you come up with the whole idea?
Thank you! I have always been drawn to nature and the great outdoors. It just seemed natural to use my creative skills to paint, draw, and create art and items that are inspired by my love for plants, mountains, night skies, and animals.
How have your family and friends supported you in your journey? We would love to know!
My boyfriend is my biggest supporter. He is always ready to help on any project that I am excited to work on and is a great springboard for new ideas. Throughout the years, my Nana taught me how to sew and do cross stitch and my mom signed me up for landscape painting classes. My family has always been supportive of my artistic goals and buy my art to give as gifts or to keep for themselves!
I think the biggest mistake is comparing my work and my achievements to others. This has been a big obstacle for me to overcome. Now, I am happy to be myself and I try not to compare myself to anyone else.
How has your childhood helped shape you into the person you are today?
I had the best childhood spending all my days outside playing with my brother and neighborhood friends. I grew up in a small friendly town in Wyoming that was framed by the Big Horn Mountains. It was a great place to grow up. Every day was a new adventure, playing by the creek, hiking in the mountains, and riding horses on my Grandfather’s ranch. The skies are so big up there, so blue. It was a great place to grow up and dream.
How would you describe yourself as a person? We know it can be quite challenging but let’s give it a shot.
Well, I’ll try! I am really a quiet introverted person. I love spending time with a selected few people and my dog. I am a very kind person and I’m nice to just about everyone that I meet.
We all have made mistakes that we’ve learned from. What were they for you, in your journey?
I think the biggest mistake is comparing my work and my achievements to others. This has been a big obstacle for me to overcome. Now, I am happy to be myself and I try not to compare myself to anyone else. As the quote goes, “Comparison is the thief of joy.” I wholeheartedly believe in this.
When you’re not working, what would you most likely be found doing? Tell us about your hobbies!
I have recently begun baking artisan bread at home. I am kind of obsessed! It is so fun! I enjoy gardening, hiking, and I also make sure to exercise daily. It’s a routine that just makes me feel good!
What, according to you, makes the customer keep coming back?
I think that a customer not only comes back because of stellar customer service or an interesting product but because of the vibe of a shop or store. I am very friendly even when there is an issue with a transaction, and I hope that people enjoy shopping with me because of this. I try to give off a very positive vibe in all my listings and shop and I think that may be why I have many repeated customers.
How do you divide your tasks? Please tell us about your schedule.
Well, I work a full-time job as a shipping manager for another small business, so I definitely have to use my time wisely. Usually, I try to spend a few hours during the week coming up with new ideas. Whether this time is during my lunch break, right when I wake up, or after work, I make sure to have a brainstorming session at least once or twice a week. I make a list of ideas so that when I have time later, most likely on the weekends, I don’t have to spend too much time thinking about new products or ideas. I send out orders every day, and I usually do all the packing of orders after I have made dinner and am winding down for the day. It’s hectic trying to run a business on the side, but I wouldn’t have it any other way!
I think that a customer not only comes back because of stellar customer service or an interesting product but because of the vibe of a shop or store. I am very friendly even when there is an issue with a transaction, and I hope that people enjoy shopping with me because of this.
There might have been some risks you had to take as a small business. What was the biggest?
For me, the biggest risk is buying large amounts of inventory. I may get a lot of interest or “likes” on Instagram or on other social media platforms, but that doesn’t necessarily mean that an item will sell. It’s always sort of a gamble to put down a chunk of money on items that haven’t been tested in the market. You kind of just have to hold your breath, promote, and see what happens!
Before we’re done, lastly, what’s the one advice you’d like to give to us?
For anyone just starting out on Etsy or with a small business, one thing that I would say is to be genuine. People can tell if you are faking, or doing things halfway. Always create or sell from the heart, and I think you will do just fine. Also, never give up. Things take time. You may not be an overnight sensation, but that doesn’t mean you won’t be successful!
Loved the post? Check out our previous conversation with another successful Etsy seller here. Let us know what you think about this shop in the comments below! We’d love to know your opinions.