Creative Series: Buy My Crap

Buy My Crap is a husband and wife team that creates unique pieces of jewelry made from resin. Creative Moxie got the opportunity to ask them questions in the latest Creative Series ranging from how they promote their work to the reaction of the uncommon name of their shop.

Creative Moxie: Early in life did you ever imagine you would be making jewelry?
Buy My Crap: No, not at all. Mr Crap was a Police officer/Police Detective in the Navy, and I was content to be a stay at home Mum. When we decided to break away from the Military everything changed, I pursued a degree in art and Mr Crap a degree in Construction Engineering. After covering my fine art paintings with resin many times as a way to finish them, we decided to see what else we could do with the medium. We spent a long time making prototypes, plans and designs as well as our own molds. Creating resin jewelry really does fulfill us both, Mr Crap because it is not dissimilar to construction, from creating a plan, a model, a mold, and then doing everything by hand, and for me, I get to make all the art graphics for the pieces. It really is a collaborative effort.
CM: Did you think your shop name, Buy My Crap, turned people off or made potential customers worry about the quality of the product?
BMC: Mr Crap blurted out the name one day when I was toying with the idea of opening an Etsy shop. We were selling locally but wanted a broader reach. I laughed so hard when he said it, and it stuck. You know, even after 3 years it still makes us laugh, and I believe that you have to love your shop and that love will translate to your products and customer service. Sure, we get some nasty messages, some of them have been extremely abusive but, for every 1 nasty message there are 20 messages of support. For every 1 message saying we won't buy from you because of your shop name, we get 20 messages saying they DID buy because of the shop name and the product. A lot of people actually read our name wrong, it is not crap as in "poop," it is crap as in "stuff". When people who are offended realize this fact, they then usually laugh! 

CM: Your work is made out of resin, have you experimented with other materials?
BMC: Mr Crap likes to work with wood, but, those are usually huge beautiful furniture pieces, he can also sew extremely well - a by product of the military and having to take care of your uniforms. I love polymer clay and  have sold a lot of my clay work in the store. 

CM: What were some of your biggest challenges when you first began selling your work?
BMC: Getting noticed. I think this is the single hardest thing any independent artist struggles with.

CM: How do you promote your work?
BMC: Word of mouth is huge. Also, having a really great product. We have worked hard to perfect the medium in which we work, our resin is clear, 99.9% bubble free, and really beautifully finished so that people want to buy more, we have a lot of loyal customers who repeat buy because they love not only the designs, but how well they are made. Then we do Facebook and Twitter, and we are very lucky to make it in to a lot of treasuries which helps, as well as hitting Etsys front page. I also belong to BCHOMM, an exclusive group of indie artists who help one another, truly, their advice and support is invaluable.

CM: What are the plans for your shop in the future, new items or expanding to selling in stores?
BMC: We just expanded in to selling molds. We have been asked so many times if we would sell our molds, but, the mold shapes we use for our own pieces, as well as all our bangles, are copyrighted with the USA copyright office, so, we decided to create brand new shapes for other resin enthusiasts to try, and I really love what we have come up with!  We do sell in local stores, and have recently had a lot of queries about selling to stores in London, Australia and New Zealand.

CM: Do you have any advice for other jewelry makers or anybody who wants to sell their work?
BMC: Stick with it, don't give up and do what you love. If you don't love your work, or you don't love your shop it becomes a struggle to stay motivated, especially when the sales don't come in right away. Watch trends, watch the front page of Etsy, keep up with the hottest colors and what celebrities are wearing. Be innovative and extraordinary!

CM: Anything you would like to add?
BMC: Something near and dear to our heart, PLEASE, If you work in resin BE SAFE!! Make sure you have the proper ventilation system, respirator, dust masks and gloves : )

Learn more about Buy My Crap:
-Etsy Shop

--------- Check out past Creative Series:
+Sean A. Metcalf : Designer
+Rasy Ran : Photographer
+Mark Mawson : Photographer
+Oliver Twardowski : Illustrator
+Paul Windle : Illustrator
+Meriol Lehmann : Photographer
+Muthari Insani : Illustrator
+Juan Leguizamon : Designer
+Sarah Hennessey : Illustrator
+Danielle Gundry-Monji : Illustrator
+RightBrainy : Crafter
+Laura Di Francesco : Illustrator
+Ryan R Thompson : Designer
+Delia Jalomo : Illustrator
+Cory Graves : Musician
+Anthony Williams : Social Media