Saturday, September 15, 2007

on selling

Someone recently said that when you make things, it's just a matter of time before people start asking if you sell those things. I've always been excited by the prospect of making money from the things I enjoy creating. It was so cool when a teacher in my high school asked to buy one of my paintings. (I ended up just giving it to her, though.) And in college, I had this idea that I could make and sell paper lanterns. But I don't think I ever finished making one.

When you make things, you eventually run out of things to make for yourself, so you hope that others will appreciate the things you make and give them. Most times they do; sometimes it's a little disappointing. But when you sell something, you know that the person buying it appreciates your time and creativity and will enjoy whatever it is.

Of course I've heard from everyone that if you turn what you love into a business, you lose the enjoyment. So, armed with this warning, I've decided to take it one step at a time. A really cool sounding craft fair is being held in November, not too far from Jacksonville, and I've applied! We'll see how it goes.
I've been working for a little while on creating some 'inventory,' but it's a slow process. I want everything to be so perfect, so I get frustrated and I'm only able to handle small spurts of making. These are a couple of ideas I'm considering putting into production: patchwork pillow covers and tote bags with a patchwork detail. The pillows are just fun, but I really believe in the tote bags. I'm modeling them after the giant canvas ones I use for my own shopping. They're super durable, yet lightweight, and stand up on their own. Maybe they can be my little way of affecting change in my little world.


  1. Inventory is a pain in the rear. I am slogging through some eco-bags for a fair in a couple of weeks and it's slow going!

    I wish I could just make stuff to order, because the thought of wasted effort makes me weep. Still, I'm making nothing I wouldn't use myself, so if it all comes to nothing, I'll have oodles of nice new grocery bags!

  2. I like your patchwork items.

    If I were taking them to a craft fair - I would really promote the fact that the totes are re-usable and are perfect for grocery shopping. Alot of people stroll through fairs and if they don't know what a product does - they often won't take the time to ask. You want to make sure that they don't see your totes as "just another bag". I would make a sign (or two) really talking up how eco-friendly your totes are. Make sure to mention that they are washable (if they are) and re-usable.

    They are a great product and alot of people want to help the environment - your totes are an easy way that they can do that.

    Best of luck! : )

  3. Hi Kayla, thanks for your lovely comment on my blog. It is exciting to hear that you are venturing into selling. I love the tote bag, it is beautiful and much more stylish than most of the environmentally friendly shopping bags you can get. Best of luck with it all.

  4. good luck with the fair kayla! the patchwork bags are great, and i really like the pillow. as someone who has just barely dipped a toe into selling, i don't know how much advice i have to give... i don't sell enough to make it a chore... still a fun hobby! but it is indeed a thrill when someone buys something you have made ;) xox


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