Sep 3, 2009

Megs Bags: Running an etsy store while in college

I received a fun little tote bag from Megs Bags on etsy, and she was kind enough to do a little interview about her life and work! Megan is only 18 and manages her own etsy store while attending college.

First off, tell us the most fundamental facts about you as an artist and seamstress. Name, location, the backstory, etc.
My name is Megan Anderson, my location... well lets just say Maryland. As of friday the 28th of August I will be in Frostburg, attending college, I'll be a freshman.

You're very talented at a young age, what got you started sewing?
My grandmother. When I was little she was always in her sewing room. She would let me do little things like pin up a pattern or stuff a pillow. Then when I got a little older she taught me to use a sewing machine. I was so excited! After I could work a sewing machine she started teaching me about patterns and such. Then when she could no longer sew, my mother was there to help. I must admit, even now when I get stuck its my mom I call. Between the 2 of them and my self taught skills Im able to create what I have.

Can you describe your creative process?
My creative process, well I dont really have one. My bags started very simple, they were basically two peices of fabric sewn together with handles added. Then as I started to play around, I learned how to hide my seems, add bottoms, and things like that. They just started to evolve, I still find my self changing and inventing. It always keeps my items different and interesting :0) But most of the time I just find fabric I like and know I want to make something from it. I never really know what im making or how its going to look until I'm done. Which I think is the best way to do it.

What inspires you to make up new patterns and designs?
I constantly see bags in stores and I'm like, Hey I can make that!. So I go home and do my best to make something similar. Thats alway fun! But I also just think of new things. I'll have this one piece of fabric that I dont know what to do with and Ill just start sewing and offten I come up with new things. As far as patterns I dont use them, to be honest I dont really like them.

Besides sewing, what else takes up your time?
Right now it's school. I'm a Freshman af Frostburg State University. So that takes up alot of my time. I'm not even there yet and it still constantly takes up my time :0) I move in the 28th and classes start the 31st, thats when I'll get really busy!

What are a few of your favorite pieces right now that you're working on?
I just finished a laptop bag for me to bring to school with me! Its so cute and I cant wait to use it. I also just started a new tote! Its always fun to start new projects and to see the out come.

Any tips for juggling an online business and going to college at the same time?
Well honestly I havent had to deal with classes yet so I will have to let you know once they start :0) But even now, with just preparing for school its hectic. I just use what free time I have to check on my business. Normally I have a link to my shop open all the time. That way when I come in my room I can just refresh the page real quick and see whats been happening. As far as promoting, lately I've been doing it before I go to bed, I just bring my laptop with me. So its working for now but I'll have to see how it goes once classes start!
Meg has also sent an update about how business is going since she started classes-
I've had to make a few changes, including how often I ship. I'm going to have to change my shipping to once maybe twice a week instead of every day. Also the time I spend creating inventory has changed dramatically. Now its whenever I can squeeze it in, and promotions will probably slack a little too.

Does anyone else have anything to contribute about attending college while managing an online business? How do you handle your time? Any helpful tips?


  1. I've only been in college for two weeks now but I find managing my etsy store and going to college full time fairly easy. but I truly love what I create and it's a stress reliever for me, so I don't really ever get where things are so hectic that I don't find time to make monsters. Because if anything, things get hectic, I get stressed and I drop things to give myself a stress reliever which usually means making monsters =]. Sometimes it's hard to keep up with being active on forums, twitter, my blog, etc though. But I just do that stuff when I can.

    elementary school here starts next week and once that starts i'll be getting up before my classes to watch a couple of little kids b4 they go to school, and then i'll go to school and get back with like a 20 minute break before they get off the bus, and some nights i'll have a kid or two until as late as seven. so, things might get really crazy here quickly. but i'm hoping to be able to make plushies while kids are here, at least on calmer days.

  2. Thanks so much for commenting Emmysboos, I understand what you mean about it being a stress relief. When I've got too much homework to do I usually find myself in the middle of a thrift store.
    Good luck making plushies with all those kids! And thanks again for sharing.