How FeltnFings got started
Introduce your Etsy shop and tell us your story. How did you begin and decide on what to sell on Etsy, and how do you create your products?
I officially started FeltnFings in 2017, after I had made all the felt flowers for my wedding that summer. I blame Pinterest because I didn't want real flowers for my wedding, and after searching on Pinterest for ideas, I fell in love with the idea of using felt. There were very few places to learn how to make them, so I ended up figuring it out for myself and creating my own bouquet to keep forever along with all of the table decorations, bridesmaids' bouquets, and buttonholes! I shared my journey with other brides in Facebook groups and discovered that I wasn’t the only one who loved the idea of felt flowers for wedding bouquets, so after being featured in a wedding magazine and receiving lots of inquiries and custom orders, FeltnFings on Etsy was born! It quickly became evident that people liked the idea of having felt flowers as home decor, for get-well gifts, birthday gifts, mothers' day, etc., so I very quickly designed a range of flowers as bunches and individual items alongside the wedding range. All of my felt is sourced from another small business here in the UK. I make every flower by hand based on my own designs, and for the most part, I aim to make them look as realistic as possible.
What are your favorite items? What makes these so special? Why do you think these items might be selling well?
There are so many! I think my absolute favorite item is the rainbow chakra. These were designed for a friend who asked for flowers based on the chakras, and I had free reign to design something completely different. There are seven different flower types in the bunch, in shades of seven different colors, each representing one of the seven chakras. I was able to include my mom’s favorite flower (the freesia) and experiment with flowers I had never made before (the Icelandic poppy). The finished result is so stunning that it makes a real statement in a vase and can be placed anywhere in the room. They sell reasonably well for a higher-priced product, and I think it’s because they are unusual, visually balanced, as well as colorful and eye-catching.
My best seller is another rainbow bunch, but a smaller and more affordable product, Rainbow Felt Flowers. I think this one sells well because it is at a good value price point; the mix of flowers is understated, but the colors are bright and eye-catching. I have a lot of different color variations for this particular bunch of flowers (pinks, orange & red, monochrome, pink & teal, yellow & grey, orange & purple, and in all shades of color; pinks, yellows, oranges, blues, purples, etc.), and they all sell well.
A very recent addition to my range, the Bright WildFlower Bunch,is also a strong seller. Again, I think the colors appeal, as well as the wildness of the mix of flowers and the affordable price point of the smaller bunch, making them a great gift.
Lastly, my bridal flowers always sell well. Because I custom design bridal flowers, a bride can choose any theme and any mix of flowers and styles to create their perfect bouquet to say "I do to create their perfect bouquet to say "I do." But as weddings can be expensive and not every bride has a bottomless budget, I also offer budget options. These are based on my general flower bunches, with added ribbons and a few more flowers, and come in a range of colors, including the ever-popular "Informal Rainbow Bridal Bouquet":
Getting sales on Etsy
How long did it take for you to earn your first sale and how do you currently attract customers to your Etsy shop?
Honestly, I can’t remember how long it took to get my first sale. I think this is partly because I launched the business on Etsy around the same time as the wedding magazine feature and had a lot of custom inquiries and orders from the start. Once those were completed, I spent a lot of time on social media, specifically Instagram and Pinterest, to attract new customers to my main range of home decor flowers. I still use social media to attract customers, but now that I’ve been established for so long, Etsy does a lot of the work for me. I also use Etsy marketing tools, including ads.
How do you manage your shop? Are you running solo or do you have any team members? What tools or services do you use to run your shop and how do you handle fulfillment?
I'm the only one managing and creating!I no longer use any apps to run the store. In the early days, I tried all of them mainly to help me understand the right keywords to use, as I found this the hardest to navigate since felt flowers are so niche! Shipping and fulfillment are all in-house, as all flowers are made to order. I have a Royal Mail business account and use click & collect to ease the time spent at the post office!
The future of FeltnFings
What goals do you have for your shop in the future?
At the moment, I am happy with my shop as it is, but I am planning a new range of tutorials. My current tutorials were designed right at the beginning, and they don’t reflect the style or quality of my work today. One of my best-selling products is my Christmas wreath, and I think right now, during the cost of living crisis, people are more inclined to want to make their own gifts, which are both cost-effective (once you know you can make them for everyone) and thoughtful. So I am currently slowly photographing every stage of making to design a whole new range!
Advice for new sellers
What’s your advice for a new seller starting an Etsy shop?
When you start out, you really do need to spend more time than you think on every aspect of your shop. Get the key words and descriptions right. Find blogs from other successful sellers and see what they do. have a good range of products. When I started, I read somewhere that you need at least 50 products. That seems like a lot, but for example, you can list variations as separate listings as well as within one listing. Always do your research! I spent a long time looking at other sellers (there weren’t that many!) to see how they presented their products and what keywords they used, and then searched on the keywords to see what else was out there! Another important aspect is getting your photography right. The photograph of your product is the first thing a person sees when they search. So it has to be good! Get a light background and invest in a low-cost lighting rig and tripod for your phone or camera. Use all the social media at your disposal, including Pinterest and the Etsy social media tool. And don’t give up. It does take time to get seen, but consistency is key.