January 1, 2013

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Sweet Success for Peach Treats

Sarah Cutler

January 1, 2013

Tif Blue has come a long way in the last couple of years with her shop, Peach Treats, where she sells handmade, custom polymer jewelry. Peach Treats started on Etsy, an online marketplace, in 2010 and now has a home in local shops and markets.

Growing up, Blue and her mom often worked with clay while doing crafts. She started researching the toxicity of polymer clay and designing earrings for her stretched lobes. Blue notes how difficult it is to find pretty jewelry for stretched lobes that doesn’t break the bank.

“When I was wearing my jewelry, a lot of my friends were noticing and wanting pairs and I thought, ‘well, it only costs 20 cents to list a few of the things on Etsy.’ So I tried it,” says Blue. The first month on Etsy, Peach Treats sold around eight pairs and Blue was happy with those results. “Then the second month I sold over 100. It skyrocketed on Etsy. From there I started going to local shops and asking if they wanted to sell my product.”

Peach Treats offers specialty jewelry as well as “faker” jewelry—fakers are designed to look as if the lobe is stretched, but made with a regular earring post. At local markets, such as the Downtown Farmer’s Market, Blue sells a significant amount of fakers. At the Art’s Festival she completely sells out of fakers.

Blue has seen a lot of support from the community on the business side too. “I have so many people that have really promoted my product—for instance, Dustin Robins, who owns Iris Piercing Studio. He has an exclusive line of my stuff at his shop and he promotes me all the time,” she says.

When it comes to a more professional look for the office, Peach Treats has plugs for stretched lobes, some that look like rosebuds and some flesh-toned, that resemble the average earring. “A lot of people are OK with the stretched look at work, but they don’t want something gigantic and gaudy that looks really tribal, so I do a small hook with beads or dangles hanging on them so they look like a regular earring,” says Blue.

Blue would love to expand; however, “The problem I’m running into is that I don’t want to mass produce stuff, I want to stay local and handmade,” she explains. “I think that people love the fact that they can customize their products and get exactly what they want, and know that it’s made by me.”

That’s not to say she won’t try. Blue hopes to become a national brand and there is the possibility of hiring more artists and training them in her craft.

For more information, visit www.etsy.com/shop/PeachTreats


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