I am very excited to introduce a brand new series, the Etsy Superstar Series! Every week I will be featuring an interview from a different Etsy shop owner. The shops featured may not have a bajillion sales, but their products are amazing.
I am even more excited to be able to introduce the first guest in this series, Kayla Potega, owner of two fabulous shops, The Eclectic Element: Handcrafted and The Eclectic Element: Vintage . The Eclectic Element is filled with handcrafted and vintage jewelry. It has many beautiful finds that are sure to turn a few heads! Kayla herself is an empowered young woman who has overcome many hurdles in life. In my eyes, she is a true inspiration.
I hope you enjoy a bit of insight in to her Etsy journey as much as I did!
Q: Is there a story behind your shop and/or shop’s name?
A: I knew that I wanted an Etsy shop (these were before the days of two shops), but I just hadn’t come up with a name yet. If you know me, you know naming something is VERY important to me; I’ll contemplate for hours until I come up with something meaningful and perfect! Which is what I did ironically-I stayed up all night writing down random words on a note pad that correlated with myself, my business, words I liked, etc and just paired them all together until I finally paired ‘The Eclectic Element’ and had that ‘Ah-HA!’ moment.
Q: How did you start creating what you sell?
A: I started creating jewelry a little after I got sick with chronic Lyme Disease. At the time we had no idea what it was I was sick with, so we were going from one doctor to the next and one of my teachers in high school who understood what it was like to be chronically ill took me under her wing so to speak. She took me to one of her support groups and the craft of the month was jewelry making. After my first stretchy bracelet, I was hooked!
Q: What’s your favourite item currently for sale?
A: There are several things that I’m partial to, but this one necklace that I made is definitely a favorite of mine:
Q: What’s the best part of having an Etsy shop? The hardest part?
A: The best part of having my Etsy shops would have to be the fact that even though I can’t physically work a ‘real life’ job, I’ve gone ahead and made somewhat of my own and Etsy is a BIG part of that independence for me! The hardest part would definitely be keeping up with everything; listing, relisting, packing, shipping, promotion…You have to be really motivated on a daily basis!
Q: Any new items we can expect to see in your shop in the near future?
A: I’m always replenishing my vintage shop, so you’ll definitely see all sorts of lovelies passing through there. As for my handcrafted shop, I’m working on building my inventory so I can have a good collection of things when I do finally list everything. Not sure when that’s going to be, but keep coming back to find out ;)
Q: What is your biggest inspiration(s)?
A: My biggest inspiration, as odd as it sounds, is the material I work with and my own mind. Unlike other people, I see an inanimate object, a piece of jewelry just begging to be upcycled, or a particular set of beads, and all of a sudden it’s transformed in my mind into something completely different!
Q: What is your favorite cartoon character and what cartoon character would you like to look like?
A: Interesting question! I think my favorite cartoon character would be Scooby Doo (who doesn’t love that big ol’ great dane?!) and I’d love to look like Jessica Rabbit-She’s the bombshell of the cartoon world ^.^
Q: The best piece of advice anyone ever gave you? The worst?
A: The best piece of advice I was ever given was everything happens for a reason, whether good or bad, and it brings you to where you currently are in life. So just be thankful for what brought you to this point in time instead of dwelling on things past. As for the worst, I honestly can’t think of any bad advice!
Q: Where else can you be found online?
A: The Eclectic Element: Vintage: www.theeclecticelement2.etsy.com
The Eclectic Element: Handcrafted Jewelry Facebook: www.facebook.com/TEEhandcraftedjewelry
The Eclectic Element: Vintage Jewelry Facebook: www.facebook.com/TEEvintagejewelry
TEE Jewelry Blog: www.teejewelry.blogspot.com
Q: Anything else you would like to add?
A: I’d love to offer your readers 20% off a purchase in both of my stores! Just use the code SARAH20.
Thank you so much for this opportunity! :)
Thank YOU, Kayla. Readers, don’t forget to check out both of Kayla’s stores! I promise you won’t be disappointed. :)
This is my favorite item from her vintage shop: