New field guide: Pop-up Shop

For 3 weeks in December 2014, Big Cartel opened a holiday pop-up shop just a short walk away from our headquarters in Salt Lake City, Utah. We filled the small space with goods from 37 different Big Cartel artists, almost half of them from our very own hometown. After an excited and supportive response from friends, family, and locals, we were able to send 100% of the sales — over $14,000 — back to the participating designers, artists, makers, and curators.

This was our first pop-up shop (or brick and mortar retail experience of any kind), so there were many successes and failures along the way. We took notes as we learned the ins and outs of a retail location so we could pass all the information on to you. In our new Pop-up Shop field guide, we share what we learned. If you’ve ever considered opening a pop-up shop, or even a permanent brick and mortar store, this guide will help you get started.

Read the Pop-up Shop field guide »

Living Room Show: Rocky Votolato

It’s high time for Big Cartel’s first Living Room Show of 2015, and we’re happy to open up our doors for Rocky Votolato. Rocky will be playing songs from his upcoming album Hospital Handshakes, so grab a friend and a ticket and join us for an intimate, acoustic set at Big Cartel HQ.

Saturday Night Paint Mixer

Dan Cassaro is taking over the Big Cartel shop space in downtown SLC this week. He’s creating a wall-to-wall installation, filling the space with a tiny village to cheer you on as you create. Join Dan and the Big Cartel crew on Saturday evening, Feb. 28, to see the mural in progress and hang out with other BC artists.

Drinks are on us, and Dan will be there to answer questions about art, inspiration, and coo over that cute photo of your dog on your phone.

Can’t make it to our little shindig? Stop by the shop some other time to check out what Dan’s created. You can view the installation for all of March 2015.

New theme: Neat

Everyone, say hello to Neat, a brand-new theme from our favorite designer / Muay Thai master, Carl, here at Big Cartel. Carl, a maker himself, envisioned a shop design that would work well for fashion brands, by focusing on photography and easily grouping products into collections. Neat isn’t limited to fashion brands, however, and will compliment any shop with high-quality images. It’s a versatile theme with features that encourage beautiful customization.

Some of our favorites include:

  • Welcome message that hovers over a slideshow on your homepage, an easy way to share announcements with your customers.
  • Automated homepage slideshow where you can share images: ideal for a lookbook or mood-setting detail shots.
  • Collections (determined by product categories), to keep your products organized and help shoppers find what they’re looking for.
  • Responsive design ensures that your images and text look great on any screen size, by automatically resizing for phone, tablet, or desktop.
  • Secondary images are displayed full screen below each product description, so your high-res photos are put to good use.
  • Social integration with share buttons for Twitter, Facebook, and Pinterest. Easily add links to your own social media accounts in the footer.

Take a stroll around the test store, then make your way to to try out Neat in your own shop.

The new

We’re proud to introduce the all-new Seeing the work of artists and designers in our community, we felt challenged to keep up with the amazing shops and brands we see every day. We took all that inspiration, and put it into a whole new site and experience for our community.

When visiting the new site, you’ll see that Big Cartel is more than just an e-commerce platform: we’re a launchpad for independent, artistic businesses, we’re an army of artists, working hard to make money doing what we love. With our redesigned site, we’ve focused more specifically on that mission, and updated our content to be more flexible as we grow.

This redesign went beyond cosmetic changes as our team re-thought each page. For existing shop owners, we’ve simplified the login process making it easy as pie to get into your shop and get to work. The tour is more thorough, with previews of each customizable theme before you ever signup or in to your admin. We’re sharing new example stores and rebuilt our community page to focus on you and the work you create.

We still offer a completely free plan, and streamlined the features in our paid plans to make the choice simply about the number of products your business needs, all while staying incredibly affordable. So yeah, we’re excited for the new look (and, oh yeah, new blog!), and the great new tools still to come this year. We hope this shows how sincerely we believe in what you do, and thank you for believing in us right back.

Visit the new site »

PitchNic Premier

In November 2014, the Big Cartel team joined a crowd of Salt Lake City locals at Spy Hop’s PitchNic Premier, where four student films were shown for the first time. Chris Koch from Tribe Federation joined us to capture the event.

Big Cartel’s co-founder and CEO Matt Wigham started things off with a few remarks about the importance of supporting artists. Once we settled into our seats, we were honored to watch the short films that this talented and motivated group of high school students spent months planning, filming, and editing. We are proud to support this event, and be a small part of SpyHop’s mission to mentor young people in film and other digital media arts.

See what else our community is up to on our Community page »

Welcome Anthony Colangelo

It’s no easy feat recruiting talented and passionate developers, but we’ve managed to do it yet again. This time, we welcome Anthony Colangelo. He’s got some serious development chops and will be focusing his efforts on all things iOS.

At 16 years old, upon encountering his very first iPhone, Anthony basically knew what he wanted to do with his life and, well, he’s doing it. After high school, he moved from New Jersey to Orlando to attend Full Sail University and graduated with an accelerated degree in Web Design & Development. When Anthony finished his degree, he moved to Philadelphia and spent the last three years at Happy Cog before joining Big Cartel in 2015. Anthony calls himself a “professional hobbyist,” but his love for all things space-related takes the cake. He was recently invited to attend a NASA Social event and 99% of his dreams have now come true.

Here’s to starting the year off right with an exciting new addition to the Big Cartel crew - welcome, Anthony!

Introducing Big Cartel for iPhone 2.0

How about a new version of Big Cartel for iPhone to kick off 2015 with a bang? It’s now easier than ever to hit the road and take your shop with you. Fulfill orders and manage products on the go. Sell in-person at craft fairs, concerts, and other live events.

What’s new in 2.0?

Great question. Topical. Well this new app includes a number of handy features to help you run your shop, wherever your travels may take you.

  • Create, edit, and rearrange products
  • Add product images from your photo library
  • Search orders, view order details, and print packing slips
  • Track which orders you’ve shipped and which you haven’t

And of course, all of the in-person selling features from our popular Checkout 1.0 version (50,000 downloads!) have had a facelift as well.

  • Sell in-person at live events using credit cards or cash
  • Give someone a quick deal with our discount slider
  • Send your buyer an optional email receipt

We hope you love this app. If you have any questions or issues, please let us know. Otherwise, a rating or review in the App Store would be awesome.

Help improve the next version

Version 2.0 is just the next step for our iPhone app. We have a mountain of new ideas to explore, as well as a few beloved features like discounts and the dashboard to bring over, and we’re looking for volunteers to help us beta test things along the way.

If you’d like access to new features before everyone else, and don’t mind bumping into a bug or rough edge now and then, why not join our iOS Beta group and help us test and improve our app of the future!

Big Cartel 2014 Recap

We’re amazed by what Big Cartel’s army of artists accomplished in 2014. We saw companies form, bands hit the road, and side projects grow into full time jobs. As a group, we achieved even more impressive feats. We took a look back at 2014 through the eyes of one of the 600,000+ shops that use Big Cartel.

Look back on Big Cartel’s 2014 »

Pop-Up Shop Grand Opening

Last week, Big Cartel’s Pop-Up Shop in the heart of downtown Salt Lake City officially opened. We were overwhelmed by the response from our Utah neighbors, who brought their friends and families the grand opening on Wednesday night.

Dozens of people filled the small shop, excited about the variety of products created by the Big Cartel community. We sipped on cider from The Press, and enjoyed cupcakes from Cake Me Now. That night we sold countless handmade goods from over 35 different artists, designers, and makers. Every dollar goes right back to the creators of the products, to make their holidays a little brighter.

For our friends in Salt Lake City: if you haven’t already visited the pop-up shop (or even if you have), please stop by! Each day the selection of goods in the shop changes slightly, so you’re sure to see something new each time you come in. The pop-up shop will continue to be open Wednesday through Saturday until Christmas!

Head this way for more details about the Pop-Up Shop »