Last week I talked about taking a leap and just starting something. Today I want to talk about finding your place in a crafty world. What does that mean? Well, you probably already have an idea of what you want to make, or have already started your journey into some sort of craft. But where is your place?
What do you want to do with your new found craft? Do you simply want to be a hobbiest? Do you want to start a business? What about build a brand? These seem to be three of the big questions.
Most of us start as a hobby, making items for ourselves, then for friends and family. I have friends who do incredible leather work, and they simply do it for the fun of it. They aren't looking to dive into a new business, they simply like to make in their free time. This is a good sense of a hobby mindset.
Then we have the business end. I started as a hobby. I wanted something, I made it for myself, then for friends and family, and it just snow-balled. I loved making with my hands, and needed some cash to continue to buy tools and materials. Early on, even as a hobby, most folks are going to need to sell their goods simply to finance their hobby, unless you don't mind spending your own money to continue.
When you move past the hobby and more into a business, I see that as really putting yourself out there, trying to make sales, trying to be profitable. The side hustle was born. I stopped making items for myself, friends and family. Everything I was making was aimed at customers, and for the first four years all my work was custom orders and work. It became a business. This is where I found myself in a crafty world.
Now, lets look at building a brand. I am not the most versed in this aspect, as I am still building on my craft as a business based on the products I offer. Brand building is something that can be big for a crafter, maker, business. Building on your name and what you're all about.
Okay, so now what? You don't have to decide where you'd like to go with you craft right now. The most important aspect it to enjoy what you're doing now, I am not suggesting that you put the cart in front of the horse and go all in for a business. You obviously need to build you skills for your craft. I look back 5 years at some of the items I made, and sold! and think to myself, " what was that person thinking giving me money for that!"
Enjoy your craft, hone your skills, reach out to other makers, find the community that surrounds your craft. Have FUN! Your place is right where you are enjoying what you're making. There is no check list for what you have to do.
Id love to hear from you and your thoughts? Agree or disagree with something? Lets talk about it! Engage.
Next Week: Finding Your Community