Wednesday, April 15, 2009

What I Did On My Spring Vacation: Curating My First Etsy Treasury

And so, after having been featured in two Etsy Treasuries recently (what a huge thrill!), I decided to try my hand at creating one myself!

Now, I've discussed Etsy Treasuries in two separate posts and I believe I've been pretty successful in stressing the difficulty in acquiring a Treasury in the first place. Although I'd made a few half-hearted attempts to get one in the past, I really set to task this time. And it's, in a word, frustrating. You have to wait until the number of lists drop below a certain number before you can grab one.

There are those that just get lucky - they just happen to be in the right place at the right time. Others use the random tactic (this is what I used during my first few attempts) - they check and double check a few times a day to see if they can snag one. But those 'in the know' use a fairly scientific mathematical approach. This is how it works: Subtract the 'drop below' number of treasuries from the total number to get the number of treasuries that need to expire before you can grab one. Then count through the lists to reach that numbered treasury to check the expiration time - and come back then. Pretty logical, but I've found it's not quite as fun as nabbing one by chance.
And then, once you've got your Treasury, you need to choose a name (theme), choose your items and alternates, add a subtitle and comment and then sit back and admire your work! Sounds easy right?
Well, I'm here to tell you it was so much harder than I thought it would be! In searching for the items I wanted to feature, I ran across errors in tagging, incorrect categorizing, subjective tagging, poor descriptions (or lack of descriptions entirely), blurry photos, dark photos, etc. There were so many items I wanted to use and searched for but couldn't find. The main reason was because I had to sift through too many pages of items that had nothing to do with my search parameters to find the items I was looking for.
And, as with many curators, I wanted to evoke certain sentiment and emotion with my Treasury. I wanted to stir up thoughts and memories of the beach, the sea, the salt air and the warm sun with the items I chose. I wanted people to view it and think about a wonderful day by the ocean. Using search keywords like seafoam, spray, coral and shell should have brought me hundreds of provocative items to choose from, however that wasn't the case.
This was my first Treasury, and although I know it's never going to be chosen for the Front Page, that's the ultimate goal for curators. And since being on the Front Page brings unlimited views, fabulous exposure and potential sales, every Etsian should be striving to make every listing Treasury-worthy. Keep the way curators will search for items in mind when creating your listings - color, pattern, texture, emotion, theme.
So, here's some advice to Etsy Artisans who want to be chosen for a Treasury:
  • Properly Categorize and Tag Your Items
  • Keep Your Tags Accurate
  • Use Colors, Patterns, Textures in Your Tags
  • Keep Descriptions... well, Descriptive
  • Keep Treasuries in Mind When Listing
  • Take the Best Photos You Can
  • Make Your Photos Visually Interesting
I'm really proud of my first Treasury. And it was exhilarating for me to tell the artists of my chosen items that they've been featured - just as exhilarating as being featured myself. Surpisingly, even more so. (I think I'll be stalking the Treasuries fairly often from now on...)
And I've captured it forever here on my blog - so please, enjoy!

1 comment:

  1. Beautiful Treasury! Great info about doing a Treasury also.


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