This page offers exclusive, advance info on new, deep discounts you can take advantage of, across the Etsy shop MatthewLHornbostel - a shop that already prices most items at around half what other comparable shops would.
For newest updates, PLEASE check the latest BLOG ENTRY.
This shop is (unsurprisingly) run by someone named Matthew L. Hornbostel, a PA resident who moved there from Texas a few years ago. The shop offers:
-printing and graphics editing services for things from various sizes of posters to stickers, business cards, holiday/event greeting cards, Halloween name tags, Christmas gift tags, and bookmarks.
I can print your images as posters, on glossy or matte materials of varying weight/thickness, and ship the result to you for a fraction of what your local print shop (Kinko's, UPS, etc) would charge, saving you a ton of cash on gorgeous prints, which means you can give prints/posters as inexpensive, beautiful gifts... and still have the cash left over for plenty of other meaningful things this holiday season.
-a wide range of miniature papercraft kits across many different scales, including adorable, charming but nonetheless surprisingly realistic Parisian, Venetian, and British Tudor kits, with additional kits in active development that you'll love, or that your recipient will - these are great for model railroaders, or other miniature enthusaists!
-digital graphics assets [massive sets of 3d assets, texture maps, etc, which are outstanding options for you if you're a digital/3d artist in any capacity or care about, want to gift an extra something small, to someone who is.]
-various original handmade paintings on canvas. They're unique, hand-painted items, impressionistic and as such not totally realist, but they're *original art* made by a human and not an AI, using strokes of paint placed one by one by hand, for whatever that's worth. It seems, so far, that's worth about $3, $4 or at most $5/hour, which... yeah, I'll take it!
Some of my better paintings, though imperfect, have been appraised after the fact as worth roughly double the amount I originally sold them for, in one case hitting a valuation of $150 years after the sale. Go figure.
Perception is huge in the valuation of things, and Adam Smith's 'invisible hand of the market' seems at times to be a hand connected to an idiot. Like... the stupid hand can't figure out what crypto is worth when objectively it's hard to say if it's worth anything at all. And meanwhile that same hand says my work used to be worth nothing, like.. $0 per hour, for almost 20 years. And then suddenly that started climbing to 50 cents an hour, then a dollar, then $2, $3, $5... right now my time is sometimes worth as much as $8 or $9 per hour on Etsy, which is HILARIOUSLY dumb because the work I do now is the exact same work I was making $0 on just three years ago. There were years when I lost money working for people, where I ran a 'successful' eBay shop that burned through hundreds of dollars [a slight loss on every original item sold] while also involving hundreds of hours of work. I was selling paintings at 99 cents each, made to order. I still don't quite get what actually changed since that time. It just did. I have to keep raising prices on Etsy, not because I want to exactly, but because the level of sale activity is still climbing and I have only so many hours per day to deliver people their orders. Prices *MUST* go up generally over time now, because the work I did at loss for years and still could not find buyers for, is now something everyone's clamoring for. And I think the only thing that changed is that people reviewed the work and said, 'guys, this is ridiculously good and absurdly cheap.' And it just sort of snowballed in that way. I don't understand why my time's worth more now than before but it seems to be, and that's great because it allows me to do things I could not afford to do before. I'm upgrading software, camera gear, printing equipment and materials to launch a ton of new stuff now that will be absolutely amazing.
And yet - I may be seeing TOO MUCH going TOO WELL in some sense. The Halloween rush was absolutely nuts. Lots of orders, massive volume of activity, and that's amazing BUT it climbed to the point of being SO BUSY that I struggled to keep up. If you are wondering why the sale dates recently shifted on the promo image above, thta's why, and no, the discounts won't be as dramatic in the next two sales because when I did that on Halloween it kind of backfired.. with many orders delayed and therefore partially/fully refunded as an apology for said delays. Advice for best deals, and best strategy to get cheap pricing and have things arrive on schedule, is outlined in the most recent blog post here.
You all made this absolute boom, this insane phenomenon possible. I'm giving gifts that involve a budget, not just time and creativity, to my nephews, niece and other family for Christmas this year, who at this point don't expect much from me and will be floored if somehow I upend their low expectations this year. You all made that happen. I'm donating more this year (2023) than I have ever been able to in any previous year of my life. I'm giving money to very efficient charitable groups to fight malaria and other serious illnesses around the world and helping feed the hungry and improve peoples' lives with education, clean water, medical care. Wow, look, you all did that. You made that possible. And I'm so grateful. By supporting me, as little as I deserve that at times, you are actually making a difference not just in my life but a lot of other peoples' indirectly too. From the bottom of my heart, thank you all!
Typical pricing EVEN NOW remains low, with the cost of a 13x19 inch poster there being only $11 on glossy cardstock even without a sale, vs. an average price of $23 for the same item across the top ten Etsy print shops which offer it.
And what about now in October?
Often the pricing here is such that as a vendor I will actually lose money in certain cases, selling some items. That's okay with me. It can be helpful in building a track record of positive reviews early on. (I really appreciate all of your five-star reviews! It's been a HUGE help! Espeically on those quirky items that don't have a lot of reviews posted by customers yet!) I do get some negative or mixed reviews are now likely to surface in the wake of Halloween 2023 and subsequent late delivery of some packages. It's not that I'm not trying, it's jsut been so busy at specific times that I've failed to keep up even working 9+ hours a day o this.
Hopefully this also leads some people to buy less-popular items that usually don't sell.
The items that don't ever really sell are often the most ridiculous ones in value terms.
For example, there are three listings in the shop that nobody's ever ordered but each involves me working for $2/hour or so. It looks like those could drop to half off, which means I'd be working for the customer at literally a dollar an hour.
So the items with no reviews are probably the ones like that, where they've been dropping in price, not gradually rising, due to lack of activity. That lack of activity isn't because the items are bad but because they're often ones where nobody else is offering anything quite like them.
Really think those could be huge but it always requires someone to jump in and be the first buyer, the first reviewer. Then in my experience things escalate like crazy when the first few ratings appear for (anything I've ever sold) because once there is a track record for an item, everyone sort of wakes up and recognizes, oh, it really is that good?
And almost always, it really is. There isn't a catch - the secret to how the price, the quality of work is what it is, is simply that I'm working for less per hour than nearly anybody else would. Especially on the items nobody's bought yet. Once people realize this, usually such items and services boom like crazy. It's happened with me many times. The first time was with eBay, and the shop collapsed due to its own success, I just could not keep up and the more people were buying, the more I fell behind, the more refunds had to be sent, the more money the shop lost. Now I'm trying not to repeat this with Etsy. I hope the shop overall is sustainable and can manage viability long term. Prices will trend up. They have to so that I can keep pace with the escalating demand levels from more and more customers. If you do not want to risk delay in shipment, please consider:
-Ordering at the start or middle of a sale, not the final hours like most people do. That happens every sale like clockwork, people wait to last minute to do anything and then,as happened on Halloween, delays set in for the peope who did so because too many people ordered all at once and I could NOT keep up.
-ordering during a non-holiday sale, in 2024, again not at the last minute. 2024 will see a lot of sales active during spans when there's seemingly zero occasion for one. The occasion for those sales, really, is because I am seeing a slowdown in activity, and can take on more work from people. So if there's a good sale you can jump on one then, knowing that because it's not a 'holiday event' you'll likely see a better level of customer service, and faster delivery time.
-ordring, if there's NO sale active, using a coupon code or similar. I have coupon codes on social media for followoers, etc. You can find coupons on the main page of this site. Those can get you some cash off any time at all, even when no sale is active, and those random spans in between visible sales are usually the absolute least busy.
But we'll see.
Here's the shop link again:
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