To All of My Beloved Artisan Friends,
I’m Jeannie, and I am an artist just like you. Red Gypsy Bohemian is my gig, and I create rugs, table mats, coasters and other home decor items from upcycled clothing and reclaimed fabrics. And I am in awe every day at the talent you all possess and how many glorious ideas you come up with.
I see unique beaded jewelry and seaglass creations, felted animals that look exactly like the real version, amazing hand sewn leather handbags, creative yarn art, adorable crocheted dolls, gorgeous wearable needlework, teensy little gnomes and fairies and their teensy little habitats, crazy tie dyed underwear, unbelievable braided rugs (woot woot – props to my rug sisters!), and I could go on and on, couldn’t I?
Like you, I have a shop on Etsy, one on Amazon Handmade, I’ve tried out eBay, and I have some items in local retail shops. I dub around with Instagram working at attracting as many people as possible to check out my stuff. It’s going well. And I’m crazy happy about it! Lately I’ve been seeing this: When you buy from a small business, an actual person does a happy dance. So True! Every time…. Having the opportunity to make a custom rug or table mat for someone lights up my day every single time I get an order.
On Instagram and Facebook, I’m really just creating a community of wonderful artisans who regularly admire each other’s work. And this is great. And so it leads to my vision…
On November 17th, 2017, I went to a local community bake sale. While I was there, I noticed one wall of beautiful handmade items and other products arranged with small buckets. At first, I thought it must be some type of silent auction. When I got around to the corner table with the little ladies sitting behind it, I understood that it was a raffle. I inquired and paid for a couple of sheets of raffle tickets and was instructed to put as many or as few as I wanted into each bucket. So I walked around a hundred more times, happily dropping a ticket or two into the buckets that matched items I couldn’t wait to win! I entered drawings for a hand carved driftwood table, a beautiful handmade quilt, a locally made gift basket of soaps, and tons more!
I knew then that there was more to this…
As the day went on, the vision developed and expanded in my mind. I took mad notes and the excitement built. By the end of that day, Raffle Bazaar was born. I’ve had plenty of experience creating websites, so I got to work with all my penciled ideas and blasted together what you see here on the site. I’ve gotta say, I’m pretty proud of it. And I have total faith that this vision will catch on and we can be up in the ranks next to Etsy and eBay. But this is a brand new idea, so I’m going to need your help.
This is a community based concept, so I’m inviting you to submit your handcrafted and vintage items via the Submit Your Item form. Here’s an outline of how I see this vision rolling out:
- Once we get around 100 artists to submit a product, we will roll out the first raffle. I’m tentatively setting the first raffle for January 1, 2018 so get your items in ASAP. It should only take you a few minutes to submit.
- So many of you (including me) love to do giveaways. At the beginning, I’m asking for giveaway products so we can all test this idea and see how it goes. Worst case scenario, only a few people will buy tickets and you’ll be treating your submission as a giveaway. If no one buys a ticket, you get to keep your item and you’ll have received free promotion of your store! If a bunch of people buy tickets, there’s a potential for you to earn even more money than you originally charge for your item. How cool is that?!?!? You can read more details about how this works on the Seller Terms page.
- Whether you decide to submit an item or not, I’d love your help spreading the word. First to your artisan friends who might like to include their items in the raffle, and next to your list of potential customers who might like to buy raffle tickets for your items and others! Let’s start with the artists – you can use the link image at the bottom of any page to share on Facebook, Instagram and your own websites. You are also free to repost any images that you find on Raffle Bazaar’s Instagram HERE. Don’t forget to follow, too! Ask your artist friends to join you in submitting products for the first raffle!
- From now until the beginning of the first raffle, items are listed as ‘Upcoming’ so there is zero risk to you. There is no fee whatsoever, so you can’t lose by submitting your items and shop links for promotional purposes. You can see what your page will look like as an example by clicking HERE.
- I will get in touch with everyone who submits an item before I open up the first raffle so you can decide whether to stay in or opt out. Right now I’m working on gathering all you artisans who are willing to take a no-risk chance at lighting up this idea! In exchange for free promotion! I know we can do this! To stay tuned for Seller Updates, SIGN UP HERE.
- We will be offering our non-winners free tickets for upcoming auctions, as well as coupon codes for your online shops (if you opt in to that). Shoppers will also be encouraged to share the site and their entries for additional free tickets. Aside from the fact that your items are amazing, there are plenty of additional reasons for shoppers to take a chance on our raffle!
I’ve read stories about how eBay started in an attic, and Etsy was born at night. Raffle Bazaar was gifted to me by an inspiration, and I’m in charge of leading you lovely people down the road to a community based raffle marketplace that will benefit us all. I will always have your best interests in my heart. So bring your faith and excitement and join me in the vision. Let’s create a brand new, profitable way for artists and sellers to share their talents with the world!