Monday, January 25, 2010

Shop of the Week: Made by Melissa

Melissa, of Made By Melissa, specializes in handmade jewelry, crochet accessories and toys. Her shop has been open for almost 4 years and has racked up over 300 sales!

Why did you decide to open your handmade shop?
I really enjoy making things and I was running out of room for my creations. Everyone I knew already had blankets and scarves and jewelry and didn’t really want more. A friend of mine showed me Etsy and I thought about it for a really long time and finally decided to open a shop.

Has your inventory changed much since you first opened?
Yes, very much. When I first opened my shop, I only had my jewelry listed. Then I slowly started adding my crochet items, first blankets and scarves and then washcloths. I most recently added amigurimi plush toys.

Who are the majority of your customers? How did they find you?
Almost all of my customers are women, I would be hard pressed to find the last male that made a purchase from me, it makes sense though, just looking at my inventory.
I would love to know how people find me! I know some have said they saw me in the Etsy forums (although I don’t spend much time there anymore), some from the street teams I am in (EtsyNJ and EtsyBloggers) and some from Twitter and Facebook. Although, I can’t really say for sure how people find me, I’d like to think that the networking I do is a help.

What inspires you to create?
Everything! My supplies, what I see people wearing, my mood…. Lately I have been more into my crocheting than my jewelry making, so I look at my yarns and I check patterns and I think about what holidays are coming up and try to make things that fit what people are currently looking for. When it comes to the plush toys, my 2.5 yr old son has been inspiring me, he asks for animals and typically gets to keep the first ones that I make.

What is your favorite item in your shop currently? Your most popular item?
Right now I am loving all my hearts! I started making heart shaped washcloths in preparation for Valentine’s Day and I love how they are coming out. I have three sets listed and more will come soon

Mi Corazon Trio of Heart Shaped Washcloths

My most popular item has been my white make-up remover pads. I make them in all colors, but hands down, the white is the most popular.

What has been your greatest resource to make your shop successful?
It’s a great big recipe of things that makes my shop a success. My creativity, advice from other Etsy sellers, support from my family and friends and the fact that Etsy is so easy to use. Social networking sites have also been a great help in getting the word out about my shop and showing off my items to people who normally wouldn’t know about Etsy. The handmade movement has also been a huge factor, people in general are really looking for handmade, unique items and want to help “the little guy” get ahead.

Any changes coming to your shop in the future?
Not in the near future that I know of, the trend right now in my shop is more towards my crochet items but I can’t say that it won’t switch back to jewelry. I never know what I will find and decide to make, so I can’t really guess what is to come.

How else can we find you online? Any team affiliations?
I am a proud member of the EtsyNJ street team, the NJ folks are really a great group of people. I do a lot of writing for the team blog at
I am also a member of the EtsyBloggers street team. The bloggers are awesome and from all over the world! Its great to read everyone’s blogs and see what is going on. Their website is

LET'S DO A GIVEAWAY! Handmade by Melissa is happy to offer up one of her adorable plush animals. One entry for each of the following activites:
1) commenting on their favorite item in the shop,
2) hearting said item,
3) tweeting about your shop or favorite item with #traceyknits so we can track it
4) writing about your shop/item on their blog/facebook and sharing the link in the comments

If you are interested in being a Handmade Shop of the Week, email me and I would be happy to send you the information.


  1. Thanks for doing a great feature Tracey!

  2. Yes, great article! I just posted about the giveaway on my blog:
    Then I posted the link on my FB page, which automatically feeds into my Twitter page. My favorite plush animal, by the way, is the baby safe turtle (which I hearted). I'm a sucker for turtles, and he's so cute!

  3. Melissa is every bit as nice and funny as she is talented. You really need to follow her on twitter to get a flavor for what she goes through living and working in NJ!

  4. Melissa's shop is just fabulous! I bought a baby blanket for a friend and she and her little one just love it!

  5. I like the white make up remover. It was the one thing that drew me into to look at her other products. I like that it is eco-friendly, since cotton requires so much water to grow, we shouldn't throw cotton products away so easily.

  6. Love her shop! Deano the Hippity Hoppity Frog is so cute--what a great idea! Thank you for the review and giveaway!
    june_spirit2628 at hotmail dot com

  7. I also wrote about this on FB.

  8. Love Penny the Pink Elephant, but it was a close call against Deano the Hippity Hoppity Frog :)

    deborah150 at hotmail dot com

  9. I hearted Penny the Pink Elephant

    deborah150 at hotmail dot com

  10. I like Phoebe the pretty little piggy.

    urchiken at gmail dot com

  11. love the bunny!

    pls enter me!


    healthy dog at live dot com

  12. The Baby Safe Plush Turtle is cute and so bright,
    He'd be the favorite to hold close at night!
    Baby would love him and giggle and smile,
    We've looked at turtles in ponds for awhile.

  13. I like the recycled silk breezy scarf. As far as animals, I love Patty the purple piggy.

    lkish77123 at gmail dot com

  14. For me I like the Set of 4 White Cotton Facial Pads, Make-up Removers because I love trying new things for makeup removal.

    And for my ferret furballs I'd say they'd like the Tootie the Baby Elephant because they can drag him from his long nose!

    Your plushies are so cute!!!

    This is a great giveaway! I hope I win. I also hearted the Tootie, Baby Elephant.

    Email is

  15. I like the Bobby the Blue Bunny so cute

    tiramisu392 (at)

  16. this contest is now closed. Thank you to all those who entered!

  17. I love the sunny yellow washcloths!

    srobinson8561 at