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Etsy brings vintage, crafting community together

Tired of the mall? Stop by Etsy, an online vintage and handmade store. Etsy is “a community of artists, creators, collectors, thinkers and doers.”

In 2005, Rob Kalin started Etsy to exhibit and sell his art online. Some people compare Etsy to Ebay, but Kalin found it difficult to sell his products on Ebay and that’s why he created Etsy.

Other artists and crafters agreed that their work often got lost on Ebay and joined with him to create an online shop to sell their products. Etsy has become an online marketplace for the crafting community, a sort of online craft fair. It is especially popular with younger generations.

Today Etsy has over 800,000 active shops and over 19 million members. They have approximately 42 million unique monthly visitors to their site and serve over 150 countries. Etsy’s mission is to “empower people to change the way the global economy works.” They hope that in the future, small business will become more successful and influential in order to create a more sustainable economy.

Etsy is organized well, which leads to easier shopping. They’ve created seven ways to search such as, colors, treasury, local shops, shop search, people search and prototypes. Etsy’s clothing stores have two sides — some sell parts to enable people to create their own clothes and crafts and others sell the finished products.

Etsy is becoming more and more popular on college campuses. It provides students with a convenient alternative to conventional vintage stores.

First-year Allison Trebacz said Etsy is her “favorite online boutique.” She loves that the store is “so available to artists all over the world.” Trebacz also appreciates how it gives artists a just start to start their own businesses and promotes the economy.

For crafters like Sophia Wilson, Etsy is a great place to get inspiration as well as sell their goods. Wilson makes knitted stuffed animals for children.

“I didn’t know there was a way to make money off of crafting other than craft fairs until I heard about Etsy,” Wilson said.

Wilson also enjoys the clothing section of Etsy. She thinks the clothes are unique and a great way to support other artists.

Etsy’s headquarters is located in DUMBO, Brooklyn, which adds to their “hipster cred” so to speak as the neighborhood is an up-and-coming trendy area.

Becoming part of the Etsy community is easy, just go to www.etsy.com, click on “sell” and create an account. From there, you can upload pictures of your products and start marketing! If buying is more your style, simply go to www.etsy.com and start shopping.

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