Etsy Grows Wholesale Platform with Open Call Program

by MR Magazine Staff


Etsy is adding a new layer to its Etsy Wholesale business, allowing crafty/emerging designers an opportunity to scale up their business and connect directly with partner retailers Nordstrom, Clementine, the Walker Art Center’s Walker Shop, The Land of Nod and Lou & Grey.

Through Open Call, up to 50 Etsy Wholesale designers will be selected to attend a one-day event at Etsy’s headquarters in Brooklyn, NY where they will pitch their product lines face-to-face to buyers from the above retailers. Attendees will also learn how to up their game through valuable workshops and seller development discussions. Admissions have already begun and will run through June 4th. See below for details.

Out of 1.4 million sellers on Etsy, there are 2,500 on the Etsy Wholesale platform, according to Rand Niederhoffer, senior program manager of Etsy Wholesale. “We vet them to make sure they can handle the B2B aspect of the wholesale business. And unlike Etsy in general, the wholesale platform is juried and curated.” After all, it’s one thing to create a single fantastic item and sell it on Etsy. It’s another to be able to produce a larger run for a retailer.

Etsy has already grown its wholesale business by partnering with retailers like Nordstrom. Etsy is in 60 Nordstrom doors in the home department and has since expanded into jewelry. “Nordstrom found that customers see the value in designer-made product,” says Niederhoffer. “They will pay a little bit more. We initially figured the core community would be the independent retailers but our larger ones are also excited.”

Etsy Wholesale also recently collaborated with the American Museum of Natural History, curating more than 140 items for its gift shop, includingSmidge Co., Redraven Studios, and MulleinandSparrow. Etsy has also been bringing curated groups of designers to various trade shows to connect with retailers.

Open Call

To apply, designers must post a product image on Instagram, include a brief pitch to the participating retail partners in the caption, and tag the post with #EtsyOpenCall @EtsyWholesale. And they are sweet to read, like the one from AdamRabbitJewelry, who wrote “Last night I had a dream that I was one of the 50 people selected to be a part of #EtsyOpenCall…”

Designers, who must also be approved for Etsy Wholesale if they’re not already, will be selected by the Etsy Wholesale team and the retailers by June 23 and announced on July 1 on the Etsy Wholesale blog.

To apply for Open Call, click here.