Interview with Cat Albaugh of Sacred Cat Studio Etsy Shop

| December 23, 2011 | 6 Comments
Cat with Mistletoes

Cat with Mistletoes

Interview with Cat Albaugh of Sacred Cat Studio Etsy Shop

I have been an Artist/crafter since I was in first grade.  My mom showed me my school papers where you were suppose to draw five birds to learn counting.  Well, by birds were flying, sitting in trees, pulling worms out of the ground, LOL!  Don’t know what my teacher thought about that.  Creating is so much a part of me that I have to create or go crazy.  I am sure others will know exactly what I mean.  I started out with drawing, then painting, then beading with seed beads.  About 7 years ago I got into other forms of jewelry making and polymer clay.   Then I discovered Needle Felting and never looked back.   I still create with polymer clay and do seed beading, but I have gotten out of the other forms of jewelry making.  Just so many people out there dong it nad my jewelry never did sell very well.  I love animals, so it was only natural that a lot of my artwork was animals, especially cats which are one of my foavorites, along with wolves and ferrets.  Not only do I have to create, but I have to have animal friends in my life.  My furbabies are a very important part of me.  I have had dogs, cats, ferrets and a calf over my many years.
My best sellers in my shows and my Etsy store are my needle felted catnip balls and mice.  My cats are my testers and they have given their paw of approval.

Etsy Shop: SACRED CAT STUDIO

1. How did you get interested in cats? How old were you when you had your first kitty?

Sammy and Simba

Sammy and Simba

I have always loved animals and cats are one of my favorites.  I got my first cat when I was in 7th Grade.  We named her Bitsy because she was a little bit of every color.  There is nothing like holding a purring bundle of fur and having then look up at you with adoring eyes.  I have had many cats over the years but my most memorable one was Mistletoes, a big 18 lb polydactyl cat that was my companion and best friend for a long time.  Right now I have two cats, Sammy and Isis, but unfortunately I have to give them up because of my husbands allergies and asthma.  I am hoping once we make our move in about a month, I will be able to have a couple outdoor cats.

Isis

Isis

2. Please describe your creative process.   

Needle Felted Cat

Needle Felted Cat

I work with wool and clay.  Honestly, I just start forming them with an animal in mind, and let the  critter emerge as to what it wants to look like.  Sometimes I have a specific look in mind, but usually not.  I love working with clay and wool because both are so forgiving and you can correct mistakes very easily.  I also like to draw and paint.  I think it is so cool to be able to take wool and sculpt it into a 3D creation.

3. How did you discover Etsy? Did you consider other ways to sell your products? 

I heard about Etsy from some friends on one of my Yahoo groups.   I have sold my crafts at craft shows and fiber festivals.  I have done okay, but you can reach a bigger audience through Etsy and reach people all around the world.  I have also tried selling on eBay, but never could get  what my product was worth.  I like that on Etsy you set a price and that is what it sells for.

4. Do you sell your products in a local store in your area?    

Needle Felted Cat

Needle Felted Cat

Not locally, but I do have a few items in a store in West Milton, Ohio.  I do need to send some more items to them, because they are pretty low on my things right now.  The store is called Really Cool Stuff.  Once we move to WV, I may see if I can find a store there to carry some of my items.

5. Have you been successful at selling your products on Etsy? Have you always been successful, or did you end up getting a lot more traffic after being featured on a specific blog?

Tabitha & Kittens

Tabitha & Kittens

I have done okay on Etsy.  I have sold more there then any place else, but sales are a bit erratic at times.   I have not been featured in a blog yet, so this is a first for me and I am very grateful to Jennifer for this opportunity.  I will have to get busy and make more critters in case this makes sales skyrocket.  One can hope!  LOL!

6. Do your customers ever give you new ideas for products?   

I have not had that happen yet, but I am always open to suggestions.  It would be nice to know what people are looking for.  I usually make things because I like them, but would love to also make things because I know others will like them.  I love being creative and learning new ways  to do so.

 

Needle Felted White Cat $25

Needle Felted White Cat $25

7. Have you thought of featuring a Ragdoll cat is some way? (Had to ask.) 

Well, not specifically, but I have been wanting to try to do all the breeds of cats, so a Ragdoll would be included.  I love that breed, unfortunately, because of my husbands allergies, Long haired cats were a definite no no.  Maybe I will start with the Ragdoll breed.

8. Are you a one wo/man show?   

Yes.  I live in the country in an area where there does not seem to be any crafters, at least not that I could find. And my husband is definitely not into crafts  IN fact, I rarely ask him what he thinks of my creations.  I usually just get an “It’s okay”.   Once we move, I will be even more isolated, and hopefully will have more time to create.

9. Do you have a blog?    

Himmy

Himmy

I do, although I do not keep up on it the way I should and I will make that my New Year’s Resolution.  It is at http://sacredcatstudio.blogspot.com/  At first I used it for everything, but then I changed it to be for my crafts only.  I have a separate blog for my everyday life stuff, shich I also do not keep up on.

10. Do you do custom ordering? Can someone return it if they don’t care for it?     

Yes I do custom orders, and have done several.  And yes, someone can return an item they don’t care for.  I want my items to sell because they draw a person to them.  If once they get the item the draw is not there, they can send it back.

11. Can you share a story with us behind any of your products that you especially enjoyed working on? Maybe because of the story behind the kitty?  

The Best Little Catnip Ball Ever

The Best Little Catnip Ball Ever $5

I would have to say that would be my “Best little Catnip Ball Ever” and my “Best Little Catnip mice Ever”.  I wanted a catnip toy that would hold up to my cats play.  It seemed whenever I bought one, they would have it torn open within a few hours.  When I learned needle felting, I deceded to make my cats catnip toys myself.   They are layered with catnip throughout, and my cts went crazy for them.  They are still playing with the ones I made them 5 years ago.  They get fuzzy with play, but they seem to like them just as much then.  These have become my best sellers, and I even have repeat customers on them.  I had one lady ordered a dozen to put on the tables at a friends wedding reception.  They take a while to felt, but knowing how much enjoyment a cat is going to get from them makes me feel good.

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About the Author ()

Hi, I’m Jenny Dean, creator of Floppycats! Ever since my Aunt got the first Ragdoll cat in our family, I have loved the breed. Inspired by my childhood Ragdoll cat, Rags, I created Floppycats to connect, share and inspire other Ragdoll cat lovers around the world,

Comments (6)

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  1. Lisa Melville says:

    Hi,
    I’m sorry to hear about your husband’s cat allergies & that you will have to be re-homing your kitties. 🙁 I’m still allergic after 9 years of shots & drugs, thankfully was able to keep my cat until he passed 3 years ago. But not sure about tolerating another one so I started to investigating different breeds. My heart’s desire is for a Ragdoll but not sure if the meds & shots would work again. I discovered a breed called the Siberian which comes from Russia. They are long haired but it isn’t the hair people are allergic to but the hormone in the cat’s saliva, I can’t remember the name, that is on the hair that is in your carpets, etc. For some reason this breed has much more lower levels of this hormone. My allergist told me that the saliva is still potent from 6 months to year on the hair that is lying around your house. And of course the docs say to keep the bedroom cat free if allergic. Of course there isn’t a guarantee a person won’t be allergic to a Siberian but the breeders I have talked with are willing to take the kitten back if you still have allergy problems. I know how lonely it is without a kitty in your life.

  2. Hi Cat,

    I absolutely LOVE you kittens! The expression on the green one is just priceless!

    LOL – Men and Crafts. I show my husband the Morgan’s Beds I make – 9 out of 10 times – That’s Nice. Every one in a Purple Moon (rarer than blue) he will make a comment – Wow That Bed is really nice. I’ve been doing them for 4 years now.

    Etsy can be hit or miss with sales. A lot depends on how you tag your items as to how many hits you get. You can also try doing a Fan Page on Facebook – I’ve had one there for about 2 years now. I post exclusive coupon codes there sometimes, and I’ve done contests.

    I have a lot of repeat customers – and many new ones are by word of mouth.

    If I can help you in any way – let me know. Jen knows how to get me.

  3. Beth says:

    I just read a Cat Watch article about pet allergies recommending three things: environmental control, allergy shots or antihistamines. Please try the last two before you give up your kitties!

  4. GlamKitty says:

    I’m so happy to have just found this post! I placed an order for one of the little felt kitties, and am VERY interested in the possibility of a custom one. (Yes, a Ragdoll. :))

  5. Cat Albaugh says:

    I would also like to thank Jenny for the interview. It was much fun. Thank you everyone for your comments.

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