|Vintage Katie Blair Designs, circa 2008. Here I'm gocco-printing shipping boxes in our Idaho apartment.|
In March 2007, I opened a shop on Etsy on a lark. It was my last semester at college, I was looking for a different creative outlet, and I started making cards and simple shoulder bags. I sold a few, and then I mostly forgot about the shop as I moved to Idaho, got married, and started a job at the local newspaper.
In August 2008, frustrated by my job and prompted by some other enthusiastic creators, I refocused on my shop. I launched several new card designs and signed up for my first craft fair.
And then in August 2009, I left my job at the newspaper and decided to focus on Katie Blair Designs full time. For the past three and a half years, I've honed my printing skills, built a base of the most wonderful customers in the world, gone to a dozen (at least!) craft shows, and sold thousands of Bursting with Brilliance Notebooks to people all over the world. It's been quite a ride.
Now, I'm ready to say goodbye to Katie Blair Designs.
This shop has given me a crash course in small business ownership. It's helped me grow the kind of thick skin that an artist needs to survive. It's taught me that there is an alternative to the standard 9-5 job, and reassured me that there are people out there eager to support budding creatives.
I've come to the decision to close Katie Blair Designs in a mess of conflicting emotions. I'll be sad to miss interacting with my wonderful customers and fellow artisans (though I'll never stop being an Etsy customer!). I'm nervous to take the leap to a different focus and goal. But I'm excited about what lies ahead: I'll be concentrating, finally, on writing. It is, you could say, the only thing I've ever really wanted to do.
Before I go for good, though, there's good news for you: Katie Blair Designs will be having a store closing sale! Starting today, all the prices at Katie Blair Designs are marked down 50%. No codes needed; the prices have already been adjusted to reflect the discount. And the stock you see in the Etsy shop is the stock that's available; once a product is gone, it'll be gone for good.
I'm not sure yet when the official, final closing date will be, but I'm leaning toward sooner rather than later, and I'll be sure to let you know. In the meantime, thanks for all of your support over the past five years. I could not have had so much success in this crazy adventure if it hadn't been for you.
P.S. If you're interested in following my non-Katie Blair Designs adventures, you can read my new writing blog at katecarpenterwrites.com. It's still a work in progress, but I'd love to have your company over there.