“My Etsy shop is now a full-time business”

  • Published: 8 Oct 2018

Duncan of Jordanstone Illustration graduate, Linzi Jamieson, told us about how setting up an Etsy shop to sell leftover stock from her Degree Show was the first step in setting up a full time business…

“I’ve always loved drawing and painting portraits”

“For part of my Degree Show at Duncan of Jordanstone, I created art nouveau-style posters of celebrities endorsing fictitious products, and that definitely sent me down the path of creating work inspired by famous faces. I had leftover stock from the Degree Show so I decided to open an Etsy shop, called Classyburd, without really knowing what I was doing. I created the Facebook page a month after graduating, so I guess that’s when the business officially launched!

“Things took off when I created work I knew I would want to buy!”

“Things really started taking off with my shop when I began creating work that I knew I would want to buy. I began drawing some of my favourite celebrities or characters whilst adding some humour or something a bit tongue-in-cheek and surrounding them with my favourite pastel colours and flowers. Thankfully, it hasn’t just been me who wants to buy them!

 “Over the years, I began to add to the shop a little bit at a time and it started growing in popularity, while I was still working full-time in hospitality jobs. However, slowly but surely, with running the shop and doing custom commissions on the side, I was eventually able to take myself down to part-time hours and focus on creating different products for the shop. It was only at the end of 2017 that I took the leap to completely quit my day job and start doing Classyburd full-time.

“I treated myself to a graphics tablet and I’ve not looked back”

“I got a graphics tablet about a year after graduating and since then I pretty much do the entire design process digitally. If I’m creating a new celebrity design, I make sure that their work is fresh in my mind. So if it’s someone from a TV show, I’ll watch a few episodes, or if it’s a musician, I’ll listen to some of their albums. I then begin drawing the portrait using my Wacom Intuos tablet and Photoshop. I always make sure to create the portrait by using a few different photographs. It’s nice to know that I’m creating something original and that hasn’t been produced by someone else.

“Once the portrait is complete, I then decide on what extra imagery is going to be added to the design. At the moment, I usually go with some sort of banner and Classyburd flowers. I’m also really loving adding a few Easter eggs to my designs here and there. When I’m fully happy with the design, it then gets sent off to print and becomes a print, t-shirt and tote bag!

“You have to do something you’re passionate about!”

“There are a lot people out there who start a business because they think it’ll be a sure-fire way for them to make money. But it’s the passion that will drive and motive you to keep going. One piece of advice would be prepare yourself for being your own boss. A lot of people assume that it’s an easy ride because you can choose when or when not to work but the truth is, when you actually own your own business, it often feels like you’re constantly working.

“A business is only going to get better the more time you spend on it, so when you don’t have a specific time to “clock off” it can feel very overwhelming. I just try to make sure that I give myself manageable goals for each day and give myself that time off when I need it. I'm still trying to nail that one to be honest, but I wouldn't change a thing."

Linzi also created this amazing video about everything she wishes she knew before she went to art college! 

"I got a graphics tablet about a year after graduating and now I pretty much do the entire design process digitally."

Linzi Jamieson
YouTube Poster Image (Cached)