Art vs. Art

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Some of you know I have another blog called Junqe Rethunque, and that I have an Etsy shop… but I’ve been conflicted recently about whether the crafty side of me needs to be promoted more and nursed a bit, or pushed aside in favor of the writing side of me.  I am still going to pursue the business with my mom (from which I took the name of the other blog) but I am starting to wonder if Etsy is worth my time. 

I think the things I make are great, and I know my family and friends agree, but my sales have not been blowing me away.  I’m thinking it might be a better plan to focus my crafty self on a couple of craft fairs each year and maybe some brick and mortar shops here in town.  I want to enjoy my sewing and creating, and if I am always trying to figure out what I could make that people would actually buy, I’m not enjoying it as much.  My sister has a great jewelry line selling like gangbusters on Etsy, and she spends a LOT of time promoting herself online and making new things for her shop – but she’s childless and her significant other works nights.  Her evenings are all hers to do all the making she wants.

Now, granted, writing will take up a lot of my time if I want to make money at it… but I think it’s a situation where it can transition into a career, whereas the craft stuff is less likely to do that.  Plus, I can write anywhere – with or without my laptop – and my crafting has to be done at home, and primarily in front of my sewing machine.  It’s a matter of logistics to some degree.

What has it come down to for you when you’ve faced a decision where you had to follow one path or another – both equally intriguing to you?  I’m open to any advice and all suggestions!

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About Laurie

I have too many hobbies, but have finally learned (sort of) how to focus on one at a time and stifle my desire to add more. ;) I'm a mom, a wife, a writer, an artist, a seamstress, a gardener, a backyard-chicken farmer, a fundraiser, a movie-lover, a book hoarder, a junker, a thrift-store-shopper... I also love to laugh, make people happy, and take road trips. Some of these things make it into blog posts. I'm almost 50 and I'm still able to sleep through the night. I consider that a success.

7 responses »

  1. Let me say that many successful sellers on Etsy are NOT childless and have husbands at home. With that said, it does make it easier when you have no life and sit at home and craft each night, BUT even if I had kids and a guy at home, I’d still promote like I do.

    Actually, I don’t really promote my shop, just post on the AREtsy forums and enter a SNS on Saturday nights. It probably takes a couple of hours a week to do that. However, the crafting each night takes up sooooo much more time and when Rocky is home, he’s okay with that too. I like doing it 🙂

  2. Man! I’d hate to see you leave Etsy and AREtsy! That would suck.

    I’ve had to choose repeatedly between family and career. My career always gets the short end. But that’s kind of a different issue than finding your bliss.

    Having made my living as a writer for the past 30 years, I can tell you that the shine wears off, just like with everything else.

    What gives you the most joy, sweet Laurie? And if the joy is equal, there’s no rule that says you have to choose.

  3. Wise words, Denise!! I’m not going anywhere yet, just trying to find the balance I guess. I tend to be impatient for “success”, but then I have to define success and not let others do it for me. 🙂

  4. As I read your post, I was thinking basically the same thing Denise was. You probably already know the answer. Although you enjoy both, you may have a true passion for one. If not, you can find way to balance them. Follow your heart!

    Oh, and your little guy will be in school before you know it!

  5. Honestly, if I’m torn between two paths I look for ways that I don’t have to choose at all. The beauty of Etsy is that you are in complete control of what you list, and how often you list it. I have to balance my crafting/business which brings me great joy but little money with my part-time teaching job which brings me headaches with a bit of joy mixed in, but a steady paycheck. One thing that I do is take advantage of slow times during the semester to “stock up” on Etsy items. I make them and photo them and get them all ready to list. Then, when I’m knee deep grading reports and such, all I have to do is take 10 minutes to list an item to maintain a presence on Etsy.

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