Sunday, 22 October 2017

Lily in Space Designs: An Interview


If you know me well enough, you'll be aware of my love for animals, and wildlife. I've always been a massive animal lover, and I just think that they're the cutest little things. I'm also someone who likes to support small businesses, and Etsy shops, so if you combine those two facts together, it's clear to see why I wanted to do an interview with Lily in Space Designs! A soon as I stumbled across Lily's account on Twitter, I just knew I wanted to speak to her and find out more...

Q1: Hey! Thank you so much for allowing me to interview you today on my blog. Let's start off with an easy question. What inspired you to choose the name 'Lily In Space'?
 
 A: Hello! When I was trying to choose a name for my business, I wanted something that incorporated my love of science, being a physics student, and my love of creativity and art. I thought that ‘Lily in Space’ brought together those two aspects, without really limiting me to a certain type of product, as I wasn’t completely sure what direction my business was going to go in. Some of my first designs were illustrations of woodland animals as astronauts! (Link to fox astronaut card)
Q2: The main theme of your designs seems to be woodland creatures. I'm guessing you're a massive animal lover?
 
A: Yes – I’m definitely a massive animal lover! Badgers are of course my favourite animals, as you can probably tell from my designs, but I am a supporter and lover of all animals. I’m a particularly strong opponent of the badger cull and fox hunting. I find nature fascinating, which is probably why I enjoy drawing plants and animals so much. I think my ‘Animal Lover’ badges are some of my favourite products, just because they describe me so perfectly! (Link to 'Animal Lover' badge)
Q3: How about you tell us when, and why you decided to start up your own online shop? Was it a sporadic choice, or one that took a lot of preparation, and thought?
A: My Etsy shop has existed since 2014, when I tried to start a shop but quickly gave up. I re-visited the idea in February 2016, after finding out about a craft fair happening at my university. I figured that I had nothing to lose by printing a few of my drawings onto cards and taking some along to see how they went down. I only had 4 designs, and I didn’t sell very much at that first fair, but I enjoyed the making process so much that I decided I might experiment a bit more and try selling some online! So, it was quite a spontaneous decision to start the business to begin with, but lots of decisions since then have required considerably more preparation, such as expanding product lines and taking the business in new directions.
 
Q4: You mainly sell badges/pins, cards, prints, and jewellery. Why did you want to design those things in particular? Would you ever branch out into anything else?
 
A: I mostly choose products based on what I enjoy making and can make myself at home. I find shrink plastic to be such a fun material to work with – it reminds me of being a kid, and it’s so satisfying watching the designs shrink down in the oven! I definitely want to expand to more products in the future though. I recently launched a new pencil case with a woodland animal design, as this is something else I can make at home. I’m really keen to make more pencil case designs – it’s on my to-do list! As well as that, I’ve got my eye on partnering with a couple more production partners to make a new range of notebooks and mugs, especially with some new writing-related and tea-related puns! So that’s a little sneak-peek of some things you might see coming to the shop in the near future. (Link to woodland pencil case )
 
Q5: Is your shop an individual thing, where you literally do everything, or do you have some little helpers as well?
 
A:  I do almost everything myself for my shop, from drawing, to making, to photography, to promoting. I have worked with some production partners though. For example, I had some notebooks printed by Awesome Merchandise. However, because a lot of the fun for me comes from making products myself, I mainly stick to making things on my own in my bedroom! My boyfriend does help me out though, like setting up at craft fairs and folding cards if I have any big orders, so I should give him some credit here.
Q6: Tell us your 3 biggest goals/hopes/dreams for the next 5 years! You can be as creative as you want!
 
A: That’s a tricky question! I have lots of mini-goals for the near future, such as reaching 200 Etsy sales by the end of the year, but I haven’t thought too hard about the long-term future. First of all, I would love to start selling my products wholesale. I love the idea of having my products sold in quaint little gift shops around the country and being seen by many more people. I would also love to expand my product line to include a lot more designs and products. Maybe in 5 years I’ll have at least 100 products in my Etsy store? That seems like an achievable goal to me. I probably won’t ever run my Etsy business full-time, as I am starting a graduate job in Physics in August 2018. Therefore, I guess my third hope for the next 5 years is that I will be able to keep this up. While doing a technical degree, I’ve found it so rewarding to have a creative outlet. I really hope that I will keep having the time (and the support!) to keep creating new designs, listing them and promoting them. And most of all – I hope that my designs will make people smile! Now I think that was more than 3…
 
 
 Hopefully all of you enjoyed finding out about a little more behind this business! I know I certainly did. Be sure to comment below if you purchase anything, as I'm sure hat will make Lily's day!
 
What's your favourite product on the Etsy? Are you as intrigued by animals as we are?
 
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Lots of love always,
 
 
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