Doing What You Love

Friday, April 13, 2012
For those who have been following along with me for awhile you may have noticed changes throughout my shop. I began my shop when I was 20 years old, but didn't start out on Etsy and I've learned so much since I first began. 

I began by creating jewelry because I thought it would sell. I had never made jewelry before but I started buying supplies and working on pieces for my shop. It wasn't exactly the slam dunk I thought it would be.

I decided I needed to do something I love, right that's what everyone says do something you love. I love wine so I decided that I would make things for my shop that centered around wine, thus came the wine corks. I worked so hard to perfect my wine corks and make sure they were durable, different and something that I loved. I had some success making wine corks, but I realized it wasn't really what I loved- making wine corks that is. I loved wine, I didn't love making wine corks. I enjoyed it, yes but I was never 100% satisfied. 

I created a set of canvases that spelled out the word love on my blog and received countless comments, pins, tweets and more about these canvases. I thought- that's it I could pain canvases for my shop. I had no painting background what so ever, but knew I wanted to try and paint. I worked on my painting technique, buying canvases, all the proper brushes and I added them to my shop. I received some decent feedback on my canvases, but I wasn't ever 100% proud of my canvases. I always thought I could do something to improve them. I constantly compared myself to others and in my eyes I never measured up to what they were doing. Never did I sit back and think- these people have training, have been doing it for awhile, they have schooling, experience and other training. I just assumed that I could pick up a paintbrush buy a canvases and become a successful Etsy seller of canvases... I was wrong. 

I thought about giving up my shop. 

I didn't want to have a shop just to have a shop. 

There was a part of me deep inside that knew that I had creative ability to create a product I was proud of. 

I gave up promoting my shop for weeks and just tried not to think much about it. 

Since I was a young girl I have always loved getting mail and more importantly I have loved sending mail. There is something that makes your day when you check the mail and in the midst of bills, advertisements and catalogs you see a handwritten envelope addressed to you. I never miss a chance to send a card for a birthday, graduation, new baby or even just because. 

I also have always had the gift of a quick wit. I'm not sure where it came from or who gave it to me, but I've got it. My Mom always told me that I speak two languages English and sarcasm. Humor and sarcasm are two of my favorite things. I will admit that sometimes my "word vomit" of humor has gotten me in to trouble, but that's a different story. 

It finally clicked one day- combine my love for snail mail and my creative humor. I decided to make greeting cards. I instantly sat at my computer any chance I got working on cards. It took me a couple weeks just to get down the format of my cards. I wanted to pour my whole heart into these cards. I knew I didn't want to post them until they were perfect. I wanted the paper for the cards to be perfect, I wanted the fonts to be perfect, I wanted the sayings to be easy to relate to and most important I wanted to have fun doing it. 

I finally feel 100% confident in my product in my shop. I love sharing my cards with anyone- family, friends, and anyone who will take a peek. I don't know if they will sell- time will tell, but I love making these cards and I love thinking of new cards that I can add. I love what I do for my shop. I love what I do. 


Aimee from said...

i am in LOVE with your cards - some sweet. some fun. some plain quirky. in love with them all. i am so excited to see how this change in your shop will show you the love people will have for your darling cards. simple. exquisite. and extension of you that we all want to send to a friend or loved one. how can we help you promote? a guest spot on LinkyHere perhaps? a Pinterest how with my Follow Along next week? would love to help in anyway that i can!! i am so proud of you!!

Tia Brumbelow said...

So So Happy you have found something you love! I really enjoy your cards and can't wait to purchase some :)

Gina said...

Such a great story/journey. Sometimes it takes a little trial and error to know exactly what you were MEANT to do.

becky said...

I love your story. I know how you feel. I struggle with what to put in my shop as well. Do you do what you love whether it sells or not? I've sold like 10 dog crates ...which is ok...they're pricey...but I keep rethinking other things to add ... but the only thing they've bot are I ditch the rest? it just a matter of figuring out the marketing strategy on Etsy. Maybe 6 months is not enough to tell. I do love your cards...I too love the sarcasm...and it has gotten me in big trouble from those that do not know I'm joking. I liked your corks as well. Let me know what I can do...maybe we can help each other. I m still confused about Etsy myself.

Kassi @ Truly Lovely said...

It's been fun to watch your shop evolve! From the wine cork I won (and still love to use) over a year or so ago... To your funny cards now! :) Excited you've found something you really love!