Two weeks ago, in my post The far east challenge, I asked your ideas about how to compete with the low prices of our far east Etsy colleagues. Several of you responded with very bright insights in the matter and I wanted to thank you all.
One of the comments that spoke most to me, was Ingermaaike's. She says, among other things:
The story is vital, the product is of course a product but also a piece of an illusion, an idyll. This is something we all need to make better use of :)
Yes, I couldn't agree more, we need to sell the story, more than the product self.
To illustrate this, a funny example of a purchase of mine. I had seen 'candlewicking' mentioned a couple of times as an old historic american craft, so when I saw a candlewicking pillow kit on Etsy, I read the product
describing on the kit. It went like this:
'This lovely pillow kit is a combination of 2 American traditions. The design is based on a documented example of nineteenth-century folk art in the Abby Aldrich Rockefeller Folk Art Center in Williamsburg, Virginia. Included is a picture of the actual design along with its fascinating origin and rich early american history.'
So, I bought it and when the kit arrived, said candlewicking was revealed to be (mostly) french knots.
Self I would have described the item as follows:
Embroidery kit of a traditional motive executed in french knots with white thread on white muslin.
Accurate?: Sure. Would I have bought the kit?: I don't think so.
We have a lot to learn, people. Besides creativity and photographic skills, we need also a way with words.
In the mean time, I am making french knots to my heart's content. Kind of zen, really. They should call them Washington knots for maximum patriotic effect, though...