Interview with Ken of ModPet Etsy Shop
Hi, my name is Ken and I make pet stuff, which currently resonates very well with me thank you. Being an ex of many things and industries, fashion, technology, and finance, making handmade pet beds was not even within imagination. The Etsy store started as a pet project for my cats using some leftover wood, an old blanket, and a roommates jigsaw; eventually someone said “you should sell that”. Fortunately, I love making things with my hands.
Etsy Shop: ModPet
1. How did you get interested in cats? How old were you when you had your first kitty?
I actually never liked cats much as a child (I’m allergic) and at the time I couldn’t understand why anyone would want something that besides sleeping, either ignored you or scratched you. My first cat actually wasn’t even mine, the cat belonged to my then girlfriend, later wife, now ex. Being allergic we had to find a solution other than “me or the cat” (thank you loratadine). Now I have trouble imagining a life without a cat, whereas I can imagine one without a wife (hehe).
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4. 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?
I’m not sure what success is on Etsy. I can say customer feedback for my stuff has been great, and that has kept me motivated and going. As for traffic, blogs are absolutely a HUGE help. I remember starting with around 20 views a day, until one day it jumped to 200, settled down until the next week it hit 2000, at which point I investigated and found out that the spikes in traffic were due to blog mentions. Blogs are also incredible in that they tend to be very topic specific, and forward exactly the people who might be interested in your product.
5. Do your customers ever give you new ideas for products?
Absolutely! Besides new colors and fabrics, I have received requests for custom work which I now offer in the store. Many times those who enjoy my current work will have very similar tastes to my own, and often better ideas, and thankfully they share their ideas..
6. Have you thought of featuring a Ragdoll cat in some way? (Had to ask.)
I wish I had a Ragdoll to feature! You offering?
8. Do you have a blog?
Hopefully soon, but currently no.
9. Do you do custom ordering? Can someone return it if they don’t care for it?
Absolutely on both! Requests are welcome for custom fabrics, items and sizes, and if I can do it (considering time/space/technical limitations) I will send a quote. As for returns, if for any reason the customer is unhappy with the bed, they can return it for a full refund.
10. 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?
Besides the one I made for my own, I can’t say there was a special one while working on it. However, I received a story from one of my customers that put me close to tears. If I had known at the time I would have made a matching house.
I just wanted to let you know how pleased my cat & I are with the lounge chair! For being a former street cat, she’s extremely picky & has rejected every single bed I’ve brought home for her in favor of the shelf where I keep my clean sheets & blankets (effectively dirtying them again) or a cardboard box. But she’s been on the lounge for days (aside from getting up to eat & use the cat box) & I’m pretty sure she’s there to stay! Finally, success!
For behind the scenes photos – check out ModPet on Facebook!