Saturday 21 August 2010

Off to Dublin in the Sun

A sort of report on the proceedings in the Snail Bar on 14 August 2010
I headed down from Belfast to Dublin on a gorgeous summer's day, and this made getting up at 5.45am for the 8am train so much easier. After a pleasant train journey spent knitting and snoozing, I arrived in Dublin at 10am, and headed to my favourite yarn shop This is Knit. There, I looked at lots of beautiful yarn, and shopped...a little bit!

After time spent in shops, charity shops and St Stephen's Green, I was so hungry that I arrived in the Snail Bar early to tuck into a delicious brunch - the food is really really REALLY good and I can recommend it highly.

The first one to arrive after me was Elke, another German, who like myself has been living in Ireland for a long time (I think we arrived the same year). While we chatted on the terrace, more Etsians arrived inside, so we actually missed the first bits of conversation. However, we surely made up for it - often two conversations went on at the same time...

The following team members were present:

Fiona from Patchworkdelights
Angela from Artysmarty
Judith from ABoxForMyTreasure
Mo from Huggleknits
Tanya from TanyaMac
Hazel from Hazeldonnelly
Elke from dragonfly1760
an Etsian whose name and shop I didn't catch (sorry, please enlighten me!)
That would be Mary from A Wish for You (Etsy shop being rolled out sometime before Chrimbo!)
and Brigitte from purlsofcolour behind the camera.

Sarah from Redpossum and her daughter Poppy were also there, but had to leave early, so they are not in the photo.

Tanya also took some photos, and hopefully she'll add them to this article. Only one for ye girls - the rest were super fuzzy! (P.S This is me, TanyaMac, in green - in case you hadn't guessed already!) :P

Fiona from PatchworkDelights, Our Dublin Rep Angela from ArtySmarty,
Judith from aboxformytreasure and Mo from Huggleknits.

We had a great craft swap, and I now have some lovely fabrics, and bits for making more stitchmarkers! Mary (etsy shop on the way) brought in a whole bag of the cutest teddy bears she had once used for teaching. She also added lovely Etsy Ireland blog ribbons to them. The idea came up to leave the bears in prominent places to advertise the blog, or bring them on our journeys and take pics of them in front of famous landmarks a la Amelie.

So here's my bear...sunning himself at the Liffey!

However, although I took two bears, I couldn't just leave a bear behind in the train, so I gave my extra bear to a friend of mine who will display him prominently on her desk.

I had great fun planting my teds around the city - here's a couple of pics... ;)

Ted 1 fancied a spin to feel the breeze on his fur,
it was a very hot day in the city...

and Ted 2 had developed quite a thirst in my handbag!
(The tourists all went loopy when they saw him left there!)

I'm trying to recap what we discussed and decided, but if I have missed something, feel free to add it in the comments:

  • Sales are slow for everyone, and we had a good moan about it. However, to stay positive, we tried to focus on the Christmas business, and ideas floated around for an Etsy Ireland pop-up shop in Dublin sometime in December. A few people are looking into it.

  • Some people who are also selling on DaWanda talked a bit about that. Elke is really successful there, so she can be our DaWanda guru...

  • I brought up a few things relating to the blog. Letizia (Ooakie) reported that some people had encountered problems with the shop directory, and she and Francis (ShineSpinner) had investigated a few options in relation to changing the shop directory:
    1.) a long list of clickable shopnames on the side - simple and clear, but takes a lot of space on the blog
    2.) a link to categories and these link to Etsy pages with all the team members that do that. The disadvantage is that if you have not listed for a while, your shop is not likely to appear
    3.) The third way is to have a single link to another page with a full list of all shops (and a pic for each)

    Most people are happy with the drop down list as it is, and therefore Tanya will look at the code again to see if there is a glitch somewhere. Of all the options, number three was seen as the best, but the consensus was that it's a hell of a job to do, and it would be a huge page to scroll down to, unless we have more than one page or links to the different categories at the top of the page

  • We decided that if a shop that isn't one of the team or an Etsy shop wants to be added to our Craft Supplies page, we ask them for a 10% team discount.

  • The question of having some discussion forum on the blog also came up. However, since our Crafty Ireland team thread on Etsy is pretty quiet these days, we weren't too sure if we need one. I suggested we could use the discussion forum that is available on our Etsy Ireland facebook page, because that's already there. We didn't come to a conclusion on this, but Letizia and I will open a new Crafty Ireland team thread on the Etsy forums - after 114 pages it is about time...

  • Also Hazel brought in a copy of the Sunday Business Post, where our lovely Judith was surprised to find her lovely jewellery featured smack bang in the middle!  
It was great to see everybody, and hopefully more local meetings will be underway shortly.

I for my part stayed a few more hours in Dublin and spent some happy times at the Designer Mart at Cow's Lane (thanks to Hazel, who told me about it) and knitting at the Liffey.

However, it had been a long day, and when I got home, I had the earliest night in ages! When do I ever get to bed at 11pm???


  1. Aw that sounds like a lovely meeting, it's a shame I missed it. It also sounds like you got lots discussed.
    A simple stop gap for the discussion board would be to but a prominent image on the sidebar that links to the etsy discussion thread, I think it would get more people using it again.

    As for the list of shops you could add an extra tab at the top with a list of shops and links, all separated into catagories. It would be a big job tho!!

  2. Hi Ruth I agree with your suggestion, a big "button" would be great, I know you have the link already on the blog but something a bit more visual as you suggest.

    Good meeting, haven't photographed my bear yet, Angie didn't find anything on pop up shops as yet in terms of a contacting any one, but will have another look.


  3. Sounds like you all had a great day with great ideas :)

  4. sorry I missed the cake...erm, I mean the meeting :-D.

    Sounds like a fun and productive gathering. I look forward to seeing where those little bears travel...loving the idea of a pop-up shop, tho I didn't now that was what they were called.

  5. I would have LOVED to meet all of you - I will defo make next time if at all possible. mandi

  6. I hear you :)

    Button is in the making!

  7. I'm lovin' all the bags on the table - bet they're hiding loads of cool stuff.

  8. Sorry I couldn't make it either! The food is so yummy there! Great to hear that the swapshop thing is working well. I am sorting out some stuff for the next one - have to do a little tidy and clear out!
    The Christmas pop-up shop idea sounds brilliant!!! It's something that would really benefit from team effort and everyone contributing - very exciting! Keep us posted :)