Saturday, January 18, 2014

Welcome to Rebecca Saylor, Our New Co-Captain!

Rebecca Saylor has been our Leader for Community Involvement and is stepping up to Co-Captain! Please join me in welcoming her to this role.  Our Co-Captains are paired up for overlapping 2 year terms so we can look forward to lots of fun with Rebecca and her shop OodleBaDoodle.

Many of us already know Rebecca from her recent success hosting the Bayview SF Etsy event: The Indie Holiday Emporium. She also is the creative mind behind the fantastic partnership with Rickshaw Bagworks. Whether teaching the latest Meet and Make or mentoring individual sellers, Rebecca freely shares her experience and enthusiasm for all things self-made. I had some fun interviewing her and hope you enjoy reading her answers and getting to know her better!

Meet Rebecca Saylor ~ SF Etsy Co-Captain

Rebecca Saylor and her famous Owl
Come say Hi on Facebook, Twitter, EtsyInstagram, Pinterest, Flikr

How did you become part of SF Etsy? 
I moved to San Francisco in February of 2010 and not long after, I attended a panel discussion at the old Museum of Craft and Folk Art which included founding  team captain Jen Johnson. I had been a member of Etsy (both selling things and buying things) for a few years and it was an inspiration to see a local team of so many like-minded people and I wanted to get to know everyone!

What has SF Etsy helped you with in your business life?
The big help has been just giving me direction and a group of friends in a new city. Because I came from a business background, I started my business with a business plan but I had no idea what I wanted to sell. Maybe that seems odd and it's totally backwards, but that's how I did it!  Like many makers,I found it difficult to limit myself to making just one item and I tried a bunch of different ideas before developing the decorative pillow concept. After I joined the team, I went to a small meet up at Katy Atchinson's apartment and it was with the
encouragement of Katy, Eko Wright and Talia Jewell that I decided to develop the hipster owls into a viable product. Meeting other team members gives you the chance to flesh out ideas and grow your business in a way you might not have imagined. Being part of a local Etsy team has allowed my business to thrive offline and online.

What partnerships, collaborations, or community connections are you looking forward to fostering?
Before opening my Oodlebadoodle shop, I had a prosperous 15 year career in Human Resources and technical recruiting. Being part of the team has given me a chance to put those skills to use to develop ongoing relationships with local businesses to provide opportunities for our members. Over the last couple of years, we've created partnerships with local businesses like Rickshaw Bagworks, FabMoAll Good Pizza and Ruth's Table - our plan is to expand on those realtionships and develop new ones that can give all of our members an
opportunity to grow their own businesses.

How do you get inspiration for your evolving product line? 
Well, the creative process is a bit messy and sometimes I I find it difficult to process all my ideas. My inspiration comes from my love of fashion and the environment or sometimes an event in my life that sparks an idea. Oodlebadoodle started with "hipster owls" and the inspiration behind those owls, was actually the fashion I saw on the streets of San Francisco. I really admire the attention to detail that the men of this city take in how they present themselves and so the owls are a way for me to express my appreciation for men's fashion and my love of owls and other animals. Once I started putting myself out there with the owls, I began getting requests from my customers for other animals and I then selected ideas that I thought I could execute with my OodleBaDoodle spin.
OodleBaDoodle by Rebecca Saylor
Late last year, I had this idea that I wanted to somehow express how much I love the city of San Francisco. I've been know to say "I want to give this city a hug" so that's why I decided to make huggable pieces of this city, so I can hug it anytime I want!  That concept sparked an idea to designed and made a huggable Victorian house,
Golden Gate Bridge and Cable Car. I'm happy to know other people share my love of the city and want to hug it too! I'm expanding that product line to include a huggable Transamerica Building, Sutro Tower and huggable Oakland Cranes. If you want to hug something else in San Francisco, let me know :)
I started my career at a machine building company, just out of college. That company used to manufacture type sets for printing presses (think old school newspapers all made by hand) As you can imagine, they don't make those typesets anymore, but while working there, I fell in love with letters and type and the whole process of
making it. In particular, I really love the ampersand symbol. That simple symbol alone says so much, doesn't it? I look at it and I see love, togetherness, community, and joining of forces. So I'm working on a series of huggable ampersands based on some early type sets that were never made into fonts. Those will be available in the coming weeks.
I like to think that my pieces tell a story and that keeps me motivated to continue to create.

Do you have other volunteer jobs?
I love to volunteeer! I feel very fortunate to be able to give my time to different community programs. Currently, I volunteer as a helper for the Etsy Meet & Make programs at the Museum of Craft & Design and I love to volunteer with FabMo with pick ups here in San Francisco or other projects they have going on in the city. I also have been mentoring a young man coming out of the foster care system who is learning to sew. Volunteering fills my spirit and I couldn't thrive without it.

What have been some of your favorite team events? 
Geez, there are so many events and I love all of them! There are a few that stand out, like our design contest with Rickshaw bagworks. I've been such a fan of the Etsy Meet and Make programs, as a teacher, volunteer or just an attendee, they are so much fun! Participating in the South Bay Meet and Make led to several personal and business connections that I am forever grateful for. I'm happy to have a friendship with Rosella from Ross Labs that came from that meet up.
All the events we've had at Ruth's Table. I met another dear friend, Paola from Knits by Paola at the Pricing Event, my co-captain, Even Howard presented. I learned a great deal that night about shipping, pricing and marketing my pieces. The two events that Stephanie Bolton from Since Sass and I put together with Ruth's Table were a blast too!  We did a FabMo selection event and a craft swap. We hope to repeat both of those this year.
One of my all time favorite small meet ups was held at Adra Valentine's house. We had a "crafty computer day" and spent time working on listings for our Etsy shops and eating delicious food. That was truly an inspirational day for me.
Rebecca, Adra, Eko, Katy, Even, and Talia meeting for "Crafty Computer Night"
Of course, I was blown away by the participation and excitement around our team Holiday show at All Good Pizza in the Bayview district. It was an honor to be part of such a great event for the team.
Recently, some of the team leaders, including the amazing Lisa Spinella, have been casually getting together
on Fridays for a little inspirational field trip somewhere in the city. We will be formally opening those field trips up to all of you on the team and I am really looking forward to meeting more of our team members.

You've brought some new leadership talent with you; can you let us know who and how you are looking forward to working with them?
I feel honored and proud of all of our members and it's really a pleasure when I get to know people more personally. In the past year, I've particularly enjoyed getting to know the very talented Betsey Reiche from B-Spired and Chelsea Farley from CuppaFog. We are so lucky to have them on our team and they both have joined the leadership team in 2014.
Betsey will be taking on my former position as Community Leader; she
has already been making connections and putting together some great
opportunities for all of us in the coming weeks. She's a very
inspiring person and her bubbly, inviting personality lends itself to
being a leader on our team. Chelsea will be bringing her savvy
bookkeeper skills to the leadership team as our Treasurer. It's
awesome that we actually need her to manage our funds. The leadership
team is so excited to be able to bring a series of exciting coaching
and business development programs that we will be rolling out in the
coming weeks to our SF Etsy team members! 

{We have a few more new great leaders coming on board and will be featuring all of them in upcoming blog posts!}

Catching up online with Rebecca:
She's a big fan of Fabmo: Banner Tutorial, No-Sew Coaster Tutorial
She's a great sewing teacher: Museum of Craft and Design Meet and Make

If you're an Etsy seller in the San Francisco Bay Area, contact Our Team Captain about joining SFEtsy!

1 comment:

Lisa Spinella said...

I am so happy for my friend Rebecca!!

Wow! this last year has been a rough one but through it all you became my friend, my business and craft mentor and now my etsy team captain.. Its been a fun and crazy time.

Know that I love you and look forward to seeing your ideas develop into something amazing for the team.

Your an inspiring person and I am so much the better knowing you.

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