Monday, February 1, 2010

I'm wondering....

How many of you have to be in a mood to craft or work on items for your shops? To really enjoy painting or sewing I have to be in the mood. What happens if you have a shop and you are not in the mood to work? How do you motivate yourself to do the work? At the moment I am not burned out, I am mostly in the mood to paint and sew but I know that times of "not" wanting to do this will happen. I've experienced those times after putting in intense work and long hours while preparing for a craft show. Once the shows were done, I didn't want to paint for 6 months. I have no choice now that I have to stock my Etsy shop. It's pretty much become a job. If I find something interesting to paint on, it motivates me. If I find a pattern that I can't wait to paint, it motivates me. I suppose with these two prerequisites if I continually look for something to paint on and look for patterns or painting ideas that strike my fancy then I will stay motivated to paint or craft. But some days I had rather read a book or catch up on a movie, or spend the day with a friend. What motivates you? What revs you to sew? To paint? To craft? Are there times you are not motivated? What causes these times and how do you renew your desire to create?
This new piece was a labor of love, and I mean LABOR. My Sweetie said it took 40 hours to complete. It may have seemed that way to him but it actually ONLY took around 8 hours to do. But, that is too long for me! Combining painting and sewing does create a lot of work. If I am sewing something I haven’t done before, it seems to take longer since I have to actually read the directions and figure out what I’m supposed to do. For me, painting is easy and sewing is time consuming. I know many of you will say it’s the other way around for you. Oh, and this is one of those projects that I had sooo many interruptions on. That doesn’t help in the time department either. I have to say I feel like I am giving this away in my Etsy shop. I don’t feel that I can ask any more for it and it is what I would pay for it but it sure hurts to spend so much time and energy and not get that back. Ugggh, I hate complaining. I do try to keep in mind when I create something, I create it from the heart and with as much “good” as I possibly can. Too many of these “labor of love” projects and I quickly become very unmotivated. Do you feel that you spend too much time on your Etsy or Website items? Do you have a certain number of hours that you expect to put into each item? I would love to hear how you solve this problem.

This finished project is the sewing drawer that I blogged about a few days ago.


The Farmer's Attic said...

Truth be told Willa I have so many things in the beginning stages and not finished. I get excited to start something and get going, then something else comes along and I want to start that right away. To get back to the ones I started which need to be finished I have to force myself to start in again. Usually when I do that, I'm good to go until something else comes along :) I think for me it's a vicious cycle and I have a craft/sewing/workroom to show for it! Maybe my 2010 better-late-than-never resolution should be to finish what I start with no exceptions. I wonder if that will get me into gear? Hmmmmm!

Have a great day!


Carrie of Farming On Faith said...

I have several blogs that really motivate me. But~sometimes I think you just need to rest. Even God rested on the 7th day, I think you need a break dear friend!

Visit this site and see if you leave inspired~
Put your feet up, take a bubble bath drink some diet coke and just recharge!
Cherish the day~

Carrie of Farming On Faith said...

Opps~here is the site!

Lynn @ Painting Thyme Needfuls said...

I can understand perfectly what you are saying as that was once a concern for me also. I too use alot of Terrye French, Renee Mullins patterns in my painting. I paint for a local an upper middle class town..what I have found is if someone does not know anything about handcrafted then they are not going to respect the TALENT, TIME and supplies that went into crafting a piece so LOVINGLY and therefore will not pay the $$$$$.....especially if they can go buy mass produced somewhere CHEAP,CHEAP....but for me I don't want them for my customers .....its the people that DO REALIZE what you put into creating that piece for them...itts unique and one of a kind....those are the customers you want.....that appreciate your talent and are willing to pay for it. When I first started painting for the shop I paint for several years ago I only did "labor of Love " pieces....but those don't always pay your rent or fees.....then the shop owner sugggested I do some primitive pieces as she has a big following there.......So I do very large door size primitive hearts, rabbits, shamrocks, pineapples, pumpkins etc for every season....I offer them in a small, medium and large....ranging in price from $16-$30.00 I cannot keep them in the shop they go that quick, I also used to hand letter and paint all my signs I now stencil them and have reduced the price considerably my signs( I can never have enough in the shop)I also paint very small signs like 4"x5" with sayings and sell those for under $10.00....items such as these do not demand so much of your time and you can produce more....thats the key ....produce MORE for your time...those are the items that pay my rent at the shop I paint at.....I also don't have to ship items like you do using Esty etc. I still do the "Labor of Love" pieces because that is where I feel I am using my talents...... and it is what I LOVE to do......your prices are so low...for what you do....your work is beautiful..... do you have any place local to sell? I also work on SEVERAL pieces at once.....for instance i will basecoat 10 signs at a time....even labor of love pieces I work on several at a time. These are some hints about what has worked for me to successfully have my business. Hopefully you will not become discouraged.....and keep up the awesome work!

The Old Cupboard Door said...

Thanks for the great advice Lynn. I do have a place I sell at locally's closing at the end of this month. The shop owner sells high-end art from locals and nationwide artist. She also has a large collection of Icelandic art. Her life is taking her in a different direction hence the reason she is closing her store. She will continue to sell online but I can do that myself. I've been invited to participate in a local art co-op but I don't know if I want to give time each week to man the store, I am still thinking about that one. I've enjoyed looking at the painted items you put on your blog as well.

Angie Berry said...

First of all, I love how your sewing machine drawer came out! That is adorable!

I don't make things to sell online or etsy because I'm afraid of it turning into a job like you said. I sell at a local flea market that runs every Saturday. Sometimes I do it, sometimes I don't. I don't like the feeling of pressure when it comes to my crafting. For me, that is my release, my relaxation. When it becomes a chore, then it's no fun anymore! =[ I hope you are able to figure it all out before you get burned out. You do beautiful work!

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