Friday, May 13, 2011

Featured Crafter: Susan Peterson from Signs of Elegance on Artfire

Please welcome Susan Peterson, from Signs of Elegance on Artfire, as this week's Featured Crafter.

How do you find out about craft fairs in your area? Do you sell online exclusively?

I sell mainly online and through a couple local shoppes and boutiques. I have done craft fairs, and really enjoy them! I usually find out about them through word of mouth from other local artisans, or local advertisements. I also promote my businesses on line, mainly through Facebook.

What was the impulse to start your business?

The impulse to start my business actually came from a local shop owner. This shop carries the product line from my soap business, Forest Hill Soaps, and they knew I enjoyed painting, and asked if I could paint a sign for a customer. The rest, as they say, is history.

What is your niche? What sets you apart?

Many of the other handmade signs out there are all ‘shabby chic’ or primitive folk art in style. Although I do on occasion distress a sign at a customer’s request, my signs are normally not distressed or ‘antiqued’ in any way. I also like to use uplifting/inspiring phrases and words on my signs. My customers appreciate the fact that I will paint any sign any color to fit their home d├ęcor. I also LOVE to work with my customers to create a custom sign for them, using words and phrases special to them and their family.

What materials do you use?

I use pine boards, cut to size and hand sanded by my wonderful husband. I use a combination of paints, including acrylics and enamels. I seal each sign with a clear coat of sealant. Every sign comes ready to hang with a sawtooth hanger attached.

What piece of advice do you wish you had, when starting your business?

The best advice I was given was to “be patient”. It has taken a good year for my soap business to become profitable, and although I have only been selling my signs for about 9 months now, they are becoming very popular, and becoming profitable.

What question would you like to ask our readers?

I would love to ask your readers their opinion of my signs. What other kinds of signs would you like to see?

Thanks for joining us, Susan. Readers, please visit her shop and leave a comment letting us know what you think. Also, can you connect with her experience? What has your experience been with your craft business?

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