I came across Elephannie doing another pounce on etsy (this is quickly becoming my favorite way of finding new people for “Handpicked Handmade” interviews)! Not only do I love the modern sense of design and color Elephannie creator Coren uses to create her sophisticated but fun line of wall decals I was also very impressed with her more than 2800 sales on etsy in little more than a year. Coren says, although she joined etsy in June of 2007 she just started selling the decals in her shop about 8 months ago. She cuts each decal to order and sends a small practice decal along with instructions with every order for you to experiment with. I’m sure once you take a look at her shop you’ll find that it’s hard to choose just one decal from her huge collection!
Coren | owner & designer of Elephannie
Where do you call home?
Where does the name Elephannie come from?
I’ve always loved elephants, and in J.R high I did a little doodle of an elephants fanny. I continued to use this doodle as somewhat of a signature on anything I would create. When I was trying to come up with a name my husband suggested using my doodle as my brand and came up with the name because it was of an elephants fanny.
What sort of set up/space do you work from? Do you have a studio space at home? or outside your home?
I have a studio set up in my home…well it’s more of an office that I use to cut out and make the designs. I typically use my living room for preparing and shipping my decals so that I can be closer to my kids.
How did you get into making these decals? Do you have an art background? Are you self taught?
About 1 and a half years ago I came across vinyl lettering, I fell in love with it. I bought a machine so that I could create my own but quickly learned I could do so much more than lettering.
I’m self taught with some help from the Husband; he’s the artist. At first, I would have him help me with designs because I didn’t think I was able to pull them off. I am now more confident in my ability and create my own designs.
Is this a full time gig?
At first it was just a hobby but became a full time gig very quickly.
If so, how did you transition from a “day-job” to Elephannie being your full time gig, and how long did it take?
Before Elephannie, I was a stay at home Mom with 4 children. When I gave my resignation papers to my husband, he refused to accept them!
How do you promote Elephannie?
I don’t really. I’ve been very fortunate to have found plenty of great and loyal customers in the Etsy community.
With an impressive 2800 sales in just one year, would you be willing to share the secret to your success on etsy?
I actually only started selling my decals 8 months ago. I honestly don’t have a clue as to why I’m so successful, I am constantly trying to figure out what it is that set’s me apart. The only thing I can think of is that I have a wide rage of styles, I try to come up with new designs regularly and I am dedicated to making sure my customers are 100% satisfied. I really think taking care of your customers is the most important thing.
How do you manage all the sales?
I’m still trying to figure that out. I’ve got piles of papers every where and am constantly refining my process to find a better way to manage it all.
Coren says, “I’m really excited about a new collection my husband is working on. He has occasionally done designs for me in the past. But this will be something all his own that will bring a new and different flavor to elephannie.”
Coren has also started collaborating with a fellow esty seller Sweet Papery who has turned some of Elephannie’s designs into custom rubber stamps like the one below.
Thanks so much to Coren of Elephannie for taking the time to answer our questions.
You can see more of Coren’s work:
Etsy collaboration with Sweet Papery