I’m about to go all heartfelt on you, which is something that I don’t usually do. If you’re not prepared to hear some top notch whining, then it’s probably best not to read on.
I love my Etsy shop, but I have the sneaking suspicion that it’s all a giant waste of my time. I know my shop has only been up and running for a couple of months, but it’s still disheartening to think that I’ve probably spent more money on supplies than I’ve made in sales. (The exception of course is my grandpa’s wooden trees, which are selling like hot cakes!!) I’m so inspired by Etsy’s “quit your day job” series that tells stories of people who were able to make enough money selling their goods on Etsy to turn it into their full time job. They were then able to quit whatever brain sucking job they had before. I am quite certain that someone made those people up.
Perhaps the most frustrating thing is that I know exactly what the problem is, but I can’t do much about it right now. I need more supplies, I need better supplies, and I need loads more time. I’ve got all kinds of ideas buzzing around in my little head, but it’s nothing that can be accomplished while I’m taking a full course load of classes and doing an internship that’s a little on the difficult side. I need to buy a scale so I can mail packages from home, instead of dragging Ad to the post office with me every Saturday and standing in line for half an hour. I need more professional packaging and business cards, so that I’m taken seriously. I need to decide on a few specific things to sell, instead of stuffing my shop full of anything and everything. I need to find my niche. I need to build up stock so I can sell in craft fairs. I need to learn to take better pictures of my finished products. I need space! I need embroidery hoops, and ink for my printer, and a garden to inspire me.
I’d love to have my own real shop someday (in Cornwall of course, full of beautiful handmade home goods), but that’s obviously years and years down the road. I thought Etsy would be a good way to get a feel for that, but maybe I’m just tiring myself out before I even get started.
Is it worth it folks?