Wednesday, June 15, 2016

Most people know about my main Etsy shop Joy Pribish Designs.  It's the shop I opened in early 2011 where I sold my photography.  I later switched to selling greeting cards and then eventually offered baby shower and bridal shower invitations.  I'm currently still selling invitations and plan on staying in that niche for a while.

Early last year I felt the itch to start selling prints.  My original thought was to offer state prints in different patterns (glitter, chevron, tribal, etc).  After some "market research", I realized that quotes sell fairly well on Etsy.  I didn't like the idea of having prints and invitations being sold in the same shop - I wanted to avoid looking cluttered and unfocused.  That's when I decided to open a second Etsy shop under Rob's name: Pribish Printables.  The idea was that the different seller name would eliminate buyer confusion if they tried to search for one of our shops under the seller's name. 

This second shop has been a great creative outlet with little pressure to sell in high volumes.  It's relatively low maintenance because the items I sell are all pre-made digital files that I upload to Etsy.  Once a buyer buys a print, Etsy e-mails them the design and I don't have to do anything.

In April of this year I was surprised to receive a message from a photo editor from the Belgian lifestyle magazine Libelle.  Honestly, I had never heard of the name.  The photo editor mentioned that they liked my shop and a particular print in my shop had caught their eye.  They asked if Libelle could feature the print in their June issue.  

After a quick search for the photo editor's name and background information on the magazine, I responded with an enthusiastic "Sure!" and asked what all they would need in order to make it happen.  In their response they also mentioned that they could send me a copy of the proof free of charge.  "Awesome!"  and then life went on and I forgot that the conversation ever happened.  

Until this past Monday when the magazine came in the mail.

The magazine arrived in a white envelope addressed to Rob.  The return address was in a different language (Dutch).  I assumed it was something for his medical flight records (I don't know why).  When I opened it up, I saw it was a magazine and then my thoughts immediately jumped to "Oh, another free parenting magazine".   But as I was walking to the trash can (to pitch the magazine), I realized that this was the magazine the photo editor promised to mail me!

It didn't take me long to page through the magazine and find my feature.  Not only was my work featured in a magazine, but it was featured next to brands like H&M, IKEA and Chanel.

Euphoria is the best word to describe how I felt when I saw the spread.

I've seen and heard of plenty of other small businesses who have had their works featured in magazines.  And my thoughts have always been "That is so cool - how did that happen for them?"  My works have been featured on countless blogs - some blogs contact me, others don't.  It's free advertising and I'm thankful for it regardless.  Magazines are different though - they're physical - you can hold them in your hand.  Consumers take their time when reading through a magazine.

This isn't about getting my name out there.  This isn't about getting more sales and making more money.  This isn't about running in a race to keep up with all of the other print shops on Etsy.  

This is about a simple little goal that I didn't even know I had made in the back of my mind.  A bucket list item, if you will.   One that was fueled by inspiration and creativity and desire to make something.

And it's one that we can finally cross off:  magazine feature

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