Melissa and Lisa make up the incredible article duo behind BorsaBella – a beautiful handbag store on etsy! These wonderful ladies are also a part of the Eastern Washington Etsy Team – a wonderful team of local artists that I’ve had an awesome time being a part of! (and yes, I’m a day late on this)
1. Tell us your story – what first got you started in this business?
Located in Wenatchee, the apple capital of Washington, Borsa Bella is the wonderful fashion bag company of Melissa Wisen and Lisa Nelson. Melissa and Lisa met about 4 years ago. Both new mothers at the time, they shared quite a few common interests that included a love for beautiful functional purses and handbags.
As avid sewers, they soon started making their own tote and hand bags for family and friends. There was such an overwhelming public interest in their bags, they began designing & sewing bags to sell. This cottage industry has bloomed into a wonderful business. With such an extensive background in fashion and design, they are creating modern handmade bags and purses out of the coolest and hip fabrics from around the world. These quality handbags are sure to please.
2. Do you make any other crafts?
Both Melissa and Lisa enjoy scrapbooking and jewelry making when we aren’t busy sewing for Borsa Bella.
3. What’s your favorite piece you have up on Etsy right now?
Melissa really like their Messenger Bags. Borsa Bella Messenger Bags are the perfect do-everything tote. These bags were designed to fashionably stow a laptop, books for school or bottles for baby. They’re also stylish enough to be used as an everyday purse.
Lisa really likes the Convertible Wristlets. This petite bag serves as the perfect multi-function accessory. Unhook the swivel and attach it to the other side where a D-ring has been artfully added so it can attach to a stroller, belt loop or Borsa Bella handbag.
Melissa converted one of her bedrooms into a quite craft and sewing room. “I love listening to books on tapes when I sew. It makes the time fly right by. However, when I am designing it has to be absolutely quite.”
Lisa converted a large section of her bonus room into a sewing room. She listens to the TV and her children while she sews.
5. Looking at your shop and your sales it appears that you have been very successful – do you have any tips and advice for those who are just starting out or who haven’t really “made it big” yet?
With Etsy it’s very important to list often and keep introducing new things. Another huge factor in getting sales are pictures. You need to take clear, colorful pictures. It helps that Melissa’s sister is a photographer (http://www.michelleellisphotography.com). “All the beautiful pictures you see she takes, while I do my best with a white box.” I have a lot to learn from her.
6. Tell us one interesting fact about yourself 🙂
For the last 3 years Melissa has played Women’s Ice Hockey. “I grew up watching my brother play ice hockey but it wasn’t anything girls did. We were supposed to become ice skaters. So, when I found out there was a women’s group playing in Wenatchee…I got suited up and haven’t stopped since.”
When Lisa isn’t biking, hiking or skiing she is playing tennis. But her favorite pass time is spending time with her husband and 4 kids.
Now for a few of my favorites from Borsa Bella!
You gotta love these Hip-Zip bags!
And what woman doesn’t need a cute cosmetic bag?