Etsy Seller Interview With Carolyn of Cate Regan Designs

In this interview, I spoke to Carolyn of Cate Regan Designs about her business and routine.

You can also read about her handmade watercolor paint in this article: Handmade Natural Watercolor Paint: A Real-Life Comparison

Carolyn of Cate Regan Designs
Carolyn of Cate Regan Designs

Some of the links in this article are affiliate links that will pay a small commission at no cost to you if they’re used to purchase something.

Tell us a little about your shop and who you are.

I’m Carolyn, and my shop is Cate Regan DesignsOpens in a new tab.. I sell handmade watercolor paint and my own downloadable art prints.

Digital art by CateReganDesigns
Digital art by CateReganDesigns

How long have you been selling on Etsy?

I’ve been on Etsy since 2016.

What’s the hardest part about selling online?

Getting name recognition and repeat buyers. Also, getting over your fear of success or failure. Both can hold you back!

Watercolor paint by CateReganDesigns
Watercolor paint by CateReganDesigns

What’s your daily routine like?

I spend the first part of the morning sending out orders if I have them.

After that I go into the studio and work on testing new color recipes.

I always measure in grams so that I can start small and if the color makes the cut I can then make it in larger quantities.

For digital art, I’m usually working after my day in the studio is done.

I work from 4 pm until 10 pm. Sometimes with the tv as background because sitting still and doing nothing is an impossibility for me.

So sitting with my iPad and Procreate is a very comfortable way to spend my evenings.

What advice would you give to someone who wanted to start selling online?

For those people who think that Etsy means instant success and lots of extra cash, take a breath.

Etsy is a slow build up if you produce a good product.

Be sure that it’s a product that you enjoy making because there is nothing worse than burnout.

Also check that there is actually a market for your product. If you’re coming “late to the game” but you still want to sell that product, tweak it, make it your own.

If you are an artist you need to separate yourself from your art.

You are NOT your art and selling something as personal as your creative expression can be brutal.

Take a look at what is popular at the moment.

If it’s Halloween, come up with some designs that would fit the season. If it’s springtime, the same is true.

The most important thing is consistency.

Find your voice and sing. Eventually even if you are following the trends, you’ll be following them in your own style.

Watercolor paint by CateReganDesigns
Watercolor paint by CateReganDesigns

Anything else you’d like to add?

Fear of failure is not an excuse. Feel the fear and do it anyway.

Most products will have their time in the sun, but if they are a fad there’s a good chance that you will have to change with the times.

Remember the face mask phase? 

Inevitably you need to be flexible.

If you’re creative you’ll learn that the ebb and flow of sales and styles are dependent on the tastes of the populace. And in most cases that taste is pedestrian.

If you want to make money you will need to meet the public on the field where they are presently playing.

Fads will come and go but making a product that you are proud of should always be your first priority no matter what niche you are in.

Connect with Carolyn online at:

CateReganDesignsOpens in a new tab. on Etsy

Instagram: @CateReganColors

Kara Buntin

Kara Buntin has run a profitable home-based business since 1999, and has a background in art, theater design, and cake decorating. She's a top Etsy seller with over 51,000 sales on Etsy and her own website, and helps other home-based business owners with their business goals and SEO. She founded the Artisan Shopping Directory website to promote the artisans who are members of her EShop Success marketing program.

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