If you began your own hand made craft business, then odds are you started it because you enjoyed crafting and hoped to make some money from your hobby. To survive in the craft business you absolutely have to love what you do. If you started your business just to make money and not because you loved your craft, then you won’t have the dedication and staying power to make it in the craft industry. A person’s passion for crafting shows in the end product as well as in all the little touches.
But perhaps you did start your business out of love for the crafting. Since then though you’ve lost some of that original spark and you’re finding it difficult to muster the same enthusiasm about your home made products. This can be a disheartening experience and you may reach the point where you consider giving up your new business because the enjoyment just isn’t there anymore. How can you keep that original joy in crafting alive when you make the switch from hobby to business?
It’s important to start small when launching your new hand made craft business. Try out your crafts at local craft shows or through family and friends. You should borrow little or no money to get your business started. Monthly loan payments can cripple a small start-up craft business in an industry that is fickle at even the best of times. Not depending on your new craft business for all your financial income will take some of the pressure off and allow you to just enjoy the process of crafting and selling.
Manage Your Time
With any small business, people have difficulty keeping traditional working hours. When starting your new craft business you will most likely not be working 9-5 at it. Odds are you’ll keep your main job and just devote time to your new start-up in the evenings and on weekends so you have enough money to make a go of it. You need to be realistic in terms of what you can accomplish. If there are four local craft show that you want to participate in all within a two week span of each other, are you really going to have enough time to create enough stock for all of the shows? You have to figure out how much you can produce and stick to that. Running yourself ragged is one of the quickest ways to lose the enjoyment of crafting. Remember you also need to keep a life-work balance. Even though you enjoy crafting, you can’t do it 24-7. You need to make time to relax and see family and friends.
Some times it is important to away from the business end of things and concentrates on the crafting itself. Experiment with new techniques and materials. This process can refresh you and you might even come up with some really unique new products for your next craft sale.
Talk to Others
It is really important to have a support system in place when starting a new venture like this. Family and friends can be a huge help with your new hand made craft business, but a lot of time they lack experience and expertise in the industry itself. It is important to develop your own kind of crafters? network ? other crafters who you can turn to and learn from. The best way to meet other crafters is at local craft shows. You can also join or start a local crafters group or guild. This can be a monthly group that meets to share stories and learn from one another. This group could also develop into a means for all of the members to market and sell their crafts. Many craft guilds hold yearly sales where all of the members showcase their work. You can start small by hosting a craft show in one of your members home or renting a community center or church basement if everyone contributes a bit. Feeling part of a crafters community will make all the difference when things get rough.
As with any new start-up, starting your hand made craft business will be difficult and at times frustrating. The most important thing is to keep your passion alive however you can so it truly is a labor of love!