An unexplained detour

Etsy has accused me of some dire transgression but refuses to explain what violation I committed. So I had to announce to my social media following that my store has closed.

The entire experience is surreal.

The day I left for my vacation (last Saturday, a mere half week ago) I placed my Etsy shop on vacation mode. I was only going to be away for a few days, but I had just sold two items to France and East York (Canada) and I was anticipating some positive reviews.

While on vacation, I wanted to show my store to my hosts.

It wouldn’t let me. Because there was no store.

Long story short, I received an email that Etsy permanently closed my store for some violation I committed.

What violation?

I have no idea. None.

I read the terms, I read the policies, and I see other sellers sell identical items as I do: handcrafted jewelry, raw Birch bark, and products crafted with Birch bark.

Etsy customer support is unhelpful and very clinical. I can’t get a voice, a chat box, or a personal conversation going. After I submitted the second appeal and requested an explanation for a second time, they sent me a survey to indicate if I was satisfied with their customer service.

Um… really?

That would be a big fat no.

I responded to the survey in professional tones and again requested explanations. Usually, if you violate something specific, you are given an alert or even a warning, no? I mean, to just remove the store without an explanation, with just a standardized, generic email, seems a little unconventional. These people took my money (the fees I paid to list with them)…

Anyway, I’m upset and less than willing to entertain returning to them if that was even a possibility, which apparently it isn’t. This is what the second email to my second appeal said:


Thank you for your message. Although we appreciate that you would like to continue selling on Etsy, your Etsy account is permanently suspended for violating Etsy’s Terms of Use.

While we’re unable to provide more information about the decision that led to your account suspension, if you believe this action was made in error, please respond to this email.

Kind regards,Etsy Trust & Safety

I believe this action (closing my store) was made in error which is why I appealed and kept asking the same question. But the first email sounded almost identical to this one…

I’m at a loss.

I called home. He said the only thing he could think of is that the Birch bark is an issue, maybe someone complained?

So I went back to Etsy and googled Birch bark, to see if other people were also prohibited from selling the raw bark. (I collect Birch bark from trees on our private family property which the trees shed themselves, as I have shown in numerous previous posts in this blog.)

Imagine my surprise when I found all sorts of raw Birch bark and handcrafted items made with Birch bark all over Etsy…

Confusing, isn’t it?

By the way my product is better quality and my handcrafted items are prettier. 😛

I doubt the jewelry is the problem, unless someone is offended by the crystal beads I use?

Anyway, another lesson learned. I don’t really know what my next steps are, but I do know I’m not going to roll over dead over this issue.

I briefly looked at Shopify, but they are very expensive ($25/month). Amazon Handmade is something I could consider, but my books aren’t doing well on Amazon so I’m hesitant there, too.

Maybe I’ll go back to Gumroad… I wonder if they allow the selling of physical items. (Note to self: research that platform.)

If anyone has any ideas, I welcome them. Perhaps I should get a business website and sell the stuff myself? Does anyone have any experience with this? If that’s a possibility and doesn’t require remortgaging the house, I may entertain this idea… but only if I can pick your brain. (Let me know in the comments or contact me via email so we can chat. Use this one claudettecreativedesigns @ gmail . com ) (I used extra spaces to prevent getting spammed.. you know how to use an email address.)

So, fire away with your comments! I’m all ears.

PS While I wait for responses or a miracle, I will continue to work on my vacation posts. I promised I will share my experiences and pictures, and I will fulfill that promise.

Thank you for stopping by my blog today!



21 thoughts on “An unexplained detour

  1. I am blown away by this and have soooo many questions as I am sure you do too. I am so sorry!

    I have been on Etsy for 15 years and hearing more and more about people being shut down with NO warning or explanation and I think that is wrong.

    I am eager to see where you land. ❤️

    Liked by 1 person

    1. Some people have emailed me similar stories, with way more traction, sales and revenue than I had. Gone without a word of explanation. I’m so stunned by the unprofessionalism and realize their entity is most likely run by AI and bots.

      It makes it difficult to stay optimistic, but don’t worry, I haven’t given up. Just taking a breather (and dealing with teenagers and university applications). 😊


  2. I am very sorry. That seems to be a current issue with Etsy now. I will forward to your email the message I got (from the newsletter of a store I follow). They did the same to them, took their products off the shelves with no explanation and only got a bot when they tried to appeal. It is getting crazy. I am now buying the products from these people’s website directly.

    Liked by 1 person

    1. I just glanced at the email. I’m shocked! And sadly not for the first time. Other people are telling me this has happened to someone they know as well.

      I’m going to take the time later to read every word in your email in detail and have a look at their website and see if I can get any tips. Thank you very much for sharing this with me. I very much appreciate it. ♥️


  3. It seems something truly catastrophic would have had to happen to be shut down without warning or any sort of means to find out what they think transpired, especially when they specifically site violations! Could someone have gotten access to your shop? A spammer sort of situation? I have no idea how etsy works but this seems way beyond normal to me. I’m sorry this has now put a glitch in you selling but I also know you can be determined 🙂 The Etsy thing would drive me crazy though, not knowing why.

    Liked by 1 person

    1. LA mentioned on IG it may have to do with shipping bark internationally. Meaning, there may be import/export issues. Except, other sellers ship raw and crafted bark items… Are they exempt from the violation? Also, why not advise me to take the bark down but keep the jewelry?

      It’s strange…

      Liked by 2 people

      1. Yes, if you sent anything to an Australian customer, we have significant and major laws protecting our ecosystems and economies within them. Our cattle industry supplies superpowers like yours who can afford our product, that we can’t. Our quarantine laws are the heaviest on the planet. Johnny and Amber ran into a brick wall on that one. There are a lot of diseases that have never gotten in here and if they should it would only cause Bob Katter, the MP responsible for that area and the 2nd largest political pressure group in Australia (the Northern Cattlemen association) to be justified in his homophobic rants at the entire major cities of Sydney and Melbourne.

        Liked by 1 person

      2. Rowed in 3 crews stroked by a son of the president of the cattlemen’s association. (Our boarding house had people from all over the world).
        I also used to watch 21 Jump Street 🤪

        Liked by 1 person

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