Interview with Alix McCauley, owner of a super-selling Etsy store
Every once in awhile we like to feature a different online crafting store we’ve recently fallen in love with. This time around we’re chatting with Alix McCauley, the owner and operator of Treehouse28 on Etsy. With over 9,000 transactions and a 100% positive feedback rating, this super-selling Etsy shop features chic custom cotton and Lycra clothing. “Beautiful,” “high-quality” and “a perfect fit” are just a few of the praises from Treehouse28 customers.
How did you get into your craft? When did you start?
I was a painter and photographer, but mostly a mother of two small children. I had been at home for years taking care of them, and it was time to start something up. I had gone to a trunk sale with local artists and was so impressed with their work and their ability to sell and make money from a craft. I went home and brainstormed on what I could do. Literally, the next day I made a few hats and arm warmers and created an Etsy shop (a friend had just told me about Etsy ). I posted them, woke up the next day and they were sold! I have not stopped since. That was about four years ago.
What inspires your work?
At first it was a niche I was filling on a very personal level — creatively, of course, but more functionally. I was a nursing mom and wanted tops to layer over so I could nurse modestly in public. Movement was important — clothing I could move and feel comfortable in but not worry if I got baby vomit on. Ha! Stylish, yet practical. Now it is my customers that inspire my work: the feedback I get, the types of people I am designing for. I have brought in colors like plum and deep fuchsia, which seriously go against my muted color palette, but make so many others happy! That makes me happy.
How did you come up with the name for your shop, Treehouse28?
I was living at 28 Avenue B in NYC. My then boyfriend (now husband) and myself used to refer to the apartment as our tree house. You could stand in the center of it, and if you leaned and pivoted just so, you could touch all the walls. The redeeming value in it was that it had two huge windows that looked out on beautiful, oh-so-rare-in-NYC trees. It was here that I got my first computer. (I know, I am revealing my dinosaur age now.) My login for everything was treehouse28. So naturally, when I logged onto Etsy for the first time, I plugged that in. It stuck.
How many hours a week do you spend crafting?
You might not want to know the answer to this question. Too many. :)
What is one of your favorite online shops/sellers?
Again, I am fickle ... it changes all the time. Today it is LEANIMAL (from Project Runway fame!). Wow, what talent.
What's one important lesson you've learned about your craft?
To be grateful.
Have a simple tip for others who do your craft?
Always put out product you believe in and would wear or use yourself.
Do you have an official site or blog?
My husband runs the wholesale division of Treehouse28. We now sell all over the world in small shops and boutiques. Ready-to-wear sizing all in organics. Treehouse28.com
What blogs or sites do you enjoy for tips and ideas?
Was bohemiangirl and now she has moved to Boho Photography. AMAZING chronicles of a beautiful mama.
What's your favorite time of day to work?
When my children are busy and happy at school.
Image credits (from top): all images from Alix McCauley