Can you introduce yourself to my readers?
Hello! My name is Aasta Connor(My name rhymes with pasta, just drop the p.) I live in Omaha, Nebraska with my husband, two little girls, two dogs, and two cats.
The little girls that model for my shop are indeed my children, Scarlett Baudelaire and Raven Nevermore.
I really love Omaha. It’s just big enough for me. If you are looking for something fun to do in Omaha there are always the standard answers like the Henry Doorly Zoo, the College World Series, or walking around The Old Market.
Here is a list of some of my personal favorite places to go to or eat at:
The Brother’s Lounge (the best bar EVER!)
Hiro 88 (they have ridiculous reverse happy hour sushi specials)
Flavors (super yummy Indian food)
Krug Park in Benson (I hear their bloody mary’s are delicious. I don’t care for tomatoes though.)
Omaha also has some other neat clothing stores like Scout Dry Goods and
Paper Doll Boutique.
My friends Sarah and Megan have a ridiculously cute and inspiring online clothing store called Hello Holiday. www.hello-holiday.com Their office is just above Krug Park in Benson.
We also have some neat venues to see shows such as The Slowdown, The Waiting Room, and the Sokol Auditorium.
What sparked your interest in vintage?
Prior to selling vintage on Etsy I worked and managed thrift stores on and off for about six years. I would get really excited to find cool, older items when going through donations. I think that is when my love for vintage really started. Also, all the history that could possibly be surrounding each vintage item fascinates me. You never know if that beautiful 1950’s dress was once someones favorite dress that they wore over and over, or if that 1980’s romper was purchased from weeks of someone’s saved allowance. Each piece tells it’s own story somehow.
Do you have any collections of your own?
I’m a bit of a notorious collector. Some of the things I collect are vintage hats, vintage needlepoint, Victorian era postmortem photos, Victorian era mourning jewelry and clothes, antique religious art, antique taxidermy, and anything to do with fraternal organizations such as the Masons and Odd Fellows.
Is etsy your sole source of income?
Etsy is my soul source of income, although it isn’t my families soul source of income. My husband is a super rad tattoo artist 🙂
Do you use social media to enhance your success on Etsy and if so, how?
Social media has been a huge help in getting my Etsy shop more visible to the public. I have a facebook page specifically for my shop, but Instagram has definitely helped me gain more customers.
What has been your biggest Etsy success and your biggest Etsy fail?
Hmmm, I think my biggest Etsy success, at least monetarily, would have been selling a Victorian children’s coffin to a collector in another state. Also, in the past six months I’ve been able to rent out a studio space in a local art building to run my shop out of. The fact that I can afford to get my business out of my house and have a place to go to work at on a daily basis makes me incredibly happy and proud of myself. As for my biggest Etsy fail, I don’t know if I can pinpoint one certain moment. There are certainly a few things I’ve learned to do differently along the way. It’s a lot of trial and error.
What are your favorite places to score vintage treasures?
Thrift stores are my number one forever and ever favorite places to find vintage items. I also go to a lot of estate sales and garage sales.
What is a typical day like working for yourself as a seller on Etsy?
I like to set aside one day a week were I prepare items and take photographs of them. That way the rest of the week is spent listing the new items. My children come to my studio with me, so I also get to take vintage clothing breaks to play a game of dominos, eat lunch with my girls, or check out the artist studios that are in my building. My work doesn’t just stay at the studio either. I like to wash all of the items before I list them, so there is usually a few stacks of clothes around my house that are either waiting to be washed or waiting to go to the studio.
What have you learned about photography as an Etsy seller?
When I look back at the photos I took when I first started selling on Etsy, I get a bit embarrassed. They were awful! Photos are everything when selling online. I’ve learned that you don’t have to have a great camera, but you do need a good backdrop, great lighting, and patience.
Do you get a lot of repeat business and if so what keeps your customers coming back?
I do get some repeat customers. Like any other business, good customer service is key. I always ship the items asap. I think packaging is also important. It always fun to open up a box and find it wrapped in tissue paper, tied with a matching ribbon, and covered in handmade pom poms (my new obsession.)
What is your favorite era for vintage things? Why?
I adore anything Victorian. The clothes were so intricately made, and most of them hand made! There is so must history in each item from that era. They are usually so,so fragile and beautiful. I see them more as pieces of art and history than just clothing.
Favorite fashion icon?
I don’t have just one favorite fashion icon. I get a lot of inspiration from my eclectic group of friends. They are all so different and rad and not afraid to just be who they choose and wear what they want.
Wow, how to cool to have a little insiders view of a city I have always wanted to visit. Thanks, Aasta, for everything!
Visit Aasta over on Etsy here.