Monday, 2 July 2012

Selling Your Art, Selling Your Craft - In the beginning!

Hi Makers and Shakers,

I'm assuming that by coming to this blog you are thinking of selling your work. Of course, others may come who are already established and want to share their hints, tips and ideas. This blog post however is aimed at the newby. 

SO.... you've found a hobby and it's turned into ...errrr... more than a hobby! The housework is left undone, the house is filling up with your wonderful creations and friends, family and colleagues have all benefited from your work. OK…. What now? I mean, there’s only so many items you can make and store right?  There may also be a need to earn a bit of extra cash here as well?

While I understand that not everyone wants to turn their crafting into a full time business, I also know what it’s like when that little hobby turns into something more!

Here’s my story (and I have many!)

Many years ago, I got interested in Quilling. You know, the little rolled up pieces of paper that you glue and pinch into shapes that then go towards making a bigger picture.

My son was only a kid then. Time was at a premium and my creating had to wait until evening. Once he was in bed, out came a tea tray, bags of 3mm paper and glue and I would sit there most of the evening, twirling and gluing these little coils into shapes.

Through a craft magazine (and remember… this was way back and before computers were invented!) I think the magazine was called Popular Crafts, I found a supplier of Quilling Paper. My local art shop did sell paper, but I bought them out quicker than they could buy in new stock! I rang the number, (REMEMBER this was in the days pre computers!) expecting some sort of large company, but was surprised to hear that she was a Quiller and her husband chopped the paper… Oh and did I know there was something called ‘The Quilling Guild’?
I most certainly did not!
Oh and she also designed patterns too!
Excellent! (Books on the subject were and still are very hard to some by). Anyway…. To  cut a very long story short, I met others at the local ‘Quilling Guild’ annual general meeting, created more and more cards…. And all manner of things covered with paper, ended up being the North Yorkshire rep for the guild and then teaching and making my own kits to sell at craft fairs…. And this lasted for 5 years!
And all because I bought a little kit, with a few strips of paper, 1 pattern and a card to complete!

I now do something completely different… I am a Calligrapher and Lettering Artists…. But even THAT came about through the Quilling….. a story I will share sometime in the future.

I suppose the moral of this story is:
However much you think that starting a craft will be just a hobby and never be worth selling to anyone, very often it’s the things that seem the least likely of hobbies, that will turn into a business!

Once you have the bug, you have it! There is no greater pleasure than selling something you have created all by yourself and for others to part with their hard earned cash in exchange. It’s certainly a job I would not change for the world!

What is your passion?
How did you start?
What ways have you found to sell your work?

Leave any comments and/or questions 
by clicking the comments link below

Until next time,
Happy crafting!
Sue x


Mark Johnston said...

Great post Sue, you have certainly inspired me to take my business forward. Let's hope others do the same.
Keep the motivation coming!

Sue Simpson said...

Hi Mark.... thanks for your kind comment. It's good to connect with other. Hopefully, this blog will encourage and inspired others to share their experiences with other, share their work and give advice.
It's a loney place when you first start, I'm hoping that this blog will help those just starting out feel less intimidated and feel free to come out into the open :-)