Tuesday, May 24, 2011

Featured Seller Tuesday!

This weeks featured seller is… (drum roll please!)

allsewnup is a shop created by Melissa Aliengena where she sells vegan, non-toxic dough for play in three types, olive oil, classic and scented.  They all come in amazingly bright color, which you should know by now are my favorites :) Stop by and check 'em out!

1.) Tell us a little bit about yourself? What are your other hobbies, what is day to day life like for you?
I’m a happily married twenty-something mommy of two beautiful children, Max (3) and Izabella (1). I’m a work from home mom, providing home day care to several other families in our small new england town. We have lots of fun learning together. When I’m not chasing eight little tikes around I like to hike and boulder, some of my quieter at home activities are cooking vegetarian foods, baking, sewing and paper crafts. I secretly wish I could master origami, but I’m too fumble fingered.


2.) What inspired you to begin creating and open your shop? 
I first opend my shop in 2007, with a variety of sewn items for kids and the home {that is where the name sprung from}. I closed shop for more than a year after Max was born. I just had no time to sew any more. Then when he was a toddler he loved playdough but it irritated the eczema on (h)is hands. When I was a preschool teacher I use to make giant batches of dough for the kids, so I made a batch. But this recipe bothered his sensitve skin too. I set out to create a blend that not only didn’t hurt his hands but helped them get better. Olive oil was what did the trick for him, and the Olive Oil Dough was born. I wanted to share the product with others who had sensitve skin or dry skin. So, I reopened my etsy shop.

3.) What is your best seller item in your shop? What is your favorite item in your shop?

The best seller is my Rainbow set of 5 colors, in olive oil dough. The whole set is 3 1/3 cups, each color is 2/3 of a cup. It is the one I make most often for ourselves at home too.

4.) What is your biggest struggle as a etsy seller?

I run the daycare alone, and it’s open for 57 1/2 hours each week, that leaves me very little time free time, so my biggest struggle is finding time. Time to photograph and list my items mostly. I’ve streamlined my operation in last few months though, I’m thankful to have found many helpful resources in the blog-o-sphere that have helped me with the photography aspect. I’m thankful for the 
USPS.com store allowing my mailman to pick up my packages right off my front porch! Also now that I have my dough product line settled in, I can just relist rather than creating a new listing everytime. 
I’m trying to launch a line of art smocks, and I feel like it has been a long time coming, but I know it will happen, eventually. Just have to find the time

5.) What's your favorite thing about being an artist? 

My favorite is knowing that there is a excited little kid waiting on their package from my shop. I really like that I am able to create for children, and hope to expand my shop, I (have) lots of little testers here to help me perfect my creations before they hit the shop!

6.) Do you have a crafting "routine"? Are there things in your day to day life (job, family, etc.) that make it difficult to stick to that routine?
I don’t really have a routine. The way my shop is set up right now, when an order comes in I fill the order from scratch right away, but there is an ebb and flow of sales, so I just squeeze those creations in as soon as I can, usually nap time. I am pretty spontaneous person trying to over come my draw to procrastination. Actually, I often use my crafting as a procrastination tool to avoid doing the things I really should be doing, like scrubbing the bathroom grout. 

7.) I talk a lot about certain fears of creativity, like the fear of failing and fearing that people won't like your creation, do you experience these fears and if so how do you get past them and keep creating?
Not so much with the things that I post in my shop, but if I am making a handmade gift for someone as a gift, I always feel a mixture of pride (that I made something that I really like) and nervousness (that they may not like it, but they’ll feel obligated to use/wear it any way). Those feelings are usually followed with relief when everyone around starts to gush “you made that yourself?” I know that I personally always love homemade gifts, and it feels great to me when someone has taken the time to produce a gift personally for me. But on the giving end I still feel nervous that it, I don’t know, won’t be good enough, or as great as a purchased gift, or worse they’ll want to exchange it and can’t. I get past it mostly by remembering the past sucessful gifts and just have to hope for the best. 

8.) Tell us a little quirky fact about yourself, personally or professionally. 
Well, I’m an avid Arboriculturist. Yes, I love trees. Scientifically, I like knowing the genious and species as well as tricks to identify as many trees as I can (for exaple; a white pine [Pinus strobus] has 5 needles per cluster where as a pitch pine [Pinus rigida] has only 3).
I went to a vocational school where I studied ups and downs of arboriculture; including chainsaw work. And I love using chainsaws. My favorite is felling trees, my least favorite is hauling brush. It is the manliest thing about me, but it is a fun part of who I am, and my family and friends always know they can call on me to lend a hand when they need some tree wo

****Want to be a featured seller?  Leave me a comment here and I'll add you to the list****.  
There's a new featured seller every Tuesday, so I need lots of shops to fill those spots :)


  1. Neat interview! Thanks for featuring the fun owner of All Sewn Up and her great dough!

  2. I wanted to tell you how much I appreciate the spotlight on my shop. I really enjoy what I do, and I hope that others do to.

  3. This is great - my mom used to make us play dough but I don't recall it being as pretty as these ones! :)

  4. If you are still looking for shops to be featured....I would love it! I am new to blogging and like you have a hard time finding time, but summer is here....so here's hoping!


  5. Always looking for more shops to feature!

    The play dough is awesome! Wish I knew how to make it. :) Atleast I have a supplier now :)


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