Wednesday, December 5, 2007

Today's ramblings

Today's my wedding anniversary...26 years. Some days I can't believe I've been married that long, and other days it seems like such a short time. I've been married for more than half my life...I can't even really remember what it's like to not be married. It's definitely been a roller-coaster of good times and bad this past quarter century. I guess, since we're still married that the good must be out-weighing the bad. Honestly though, there are definitely times that I ask myself why it is that I've stuck it out...because sometimes it seems we are two very different, opposite, people....and opposites don't always attract. Oh well, guess I'll see how the next 25 years go and then decide if it was worth it!

On the crafting front: I've had my eBay shop open for almost a month now....not a single sale yet. I've had a shop on for almost two months now...not a single sale there either. I've just ended a 10 day sale in my Etsy shop where I had all of my crocheted items (all 85 of them) marked down 25%...and didn't sell a single one. Oh and I had a person change their mind on wanting a special order (which is OK)...and a second special order inquiry is alo likely to result in the person deciding they don't really want the items afterall. I guess all in all I'm getting a little discouraged.

I tell myself a couple of things to help boost my confidence...1) there are so many wonderfully beautiful items on Etsy that it is fortunate to have any sales there at all, and 2) the US economy right now is on the way down...most people just don't have the money to spend on things that are not necessities (I know I don't)...and the ones that do have money are not going to be interested in the stuff I have (it's not hip, edgy, trendy, etc). Although I know both of these points are likely 100%'s still disheartening to think that I'm wasting my time on making items that will never sell.

I also think my prices are still not right. I know that they are in line based on a minimum wage ($5.85 an hr) labor rate (which from everything that I'm hearing is much lower than industry standard)...but I think they might be too high for what someone would actually pay. $20 for a teddy bear that takes me 3 hrs to complete would seem reasonable...but not when someone can go to a discount retail store and buy the same size teddy bear for less than $5. The same can be said for the other crocheted items in my shop can find mass produced wallets, scarves, and magnets, etc for less than half of what I have my items priced at. I can't give them away at those prices...but I can't keep making things that just sit in my shop either. I'm really wondering if it is nothing more than a pipe-dream to ever think that I will make steady sales. Leaning very far towards the side of just giving up altogether. I have so many ideas for new lines of items...but I don't even want to invest the time to make them since there is an almost 100% chance that they won't sell...people just don't want what I have the skills to make.

Saturday, December 1, 2007

The quest for the perfect holiday

Why is it, that we - especially women - feel like we always want to create the perfect Christmas for our friends and family? Maybe I'm the only one who feels this way...every single year...but I'm sure I'm not.

I find myself feeling this way every year...even though a part of my brain knows that no such thing is even possible. I always want to make sure the tree is perfectly decorated, that there are dozens of different homemade baked goods, and that everyone gets everything that they want as gifts. That's the dreamland I live in. And then reality sets in...every year.

The tree won't be perfect this year either because I'll likely wait to even put it up and decorate it until about a week before Christmas and then I'll rush just to get it done. If I'm lucky I'll manage to make a few dozen cookies...likely just the old stand-bys since there's no way I'll have the time to make all the scrumptious goodies I see in the magazines (not since I work 50 hours a week at my job). And likely this year, no-one will get much of anything in the way of gifts since I have no money to shop. Oh, well....wonder if I'll ever get to the point when I don't stress about the holiday...when it just seems like any other day of the year.

On the crafting front: the ornaments that my mom made seem to be selling pretty well in my Etsy shop. And that's about all that is selling, lately at least. I think when I raised the prices I shot myself in the foot with regards to ever hoping that my crochet work would sell. That really makes me sad because even though I LOVE to crochet, I NEED to make money too. I'm really beginning to believe that there really isn't a market for my work. If the market is out there, I have absolutely no idea how to find it. I'll keep trying, but I already know there is not much hope that I'll ever be a "success"...not in monetary terms or recognition anyway. to make some more things that won't sell, and start the weekend chores of laundry, vacuuming, bill paying and bathroom cleaning.