I have a little etsy store (jessainthebox.etsy.com) and a little dream. I've never wanted to sell my crafts full-time, but I do want to do it on the side (I want to be a librarian, I'm currently a college student). I have a few things on my etsy shop currently that don't cost much to make, but the things I really want to make cost much more to make. I want to have my art printed on cards and such. The investment of time doesn't scare me at all, but the investment of money to have cards printed does scare me. Since I'm just starting and don't know how things will sell, I don't know how many to get printed. It's all so nerve-wracking. I daydream all the time about the wonderful cards and such I could have printed, but I'm paralyzed in terms of actually making the artwork because I'm so nervous about the startup costs.
How did others start? I can imagine several ways of approaching this problem (putting in money from another job, selling a lot of low investment things first, etc.), but I'm interested in how people have actually approached this and what did and didn't work.
What is a good, soft fabric paint that is easy to stitch through, by hand? I've tried just plain acrylic paint and acrylic paint mixed with textile medium the way the bottle instructed, and both of those were pretty difficult to stitch through. Also, I imagine that something like tulip would be difficult to stitch through as it gets a plasticy feel to it once it's dry.
I know that real shisha mirrors are made of glass. What I want is fake shisha mirrors. Like you find on already embroidered dresses. I think they are basically large metallic sequins without holes. A little help?
I'm looking into selling my crafts. This is a whole new thing for me, I have never, ever done this before. But is there some where that tells me where the little crafts shows are? Little ones, like at schools and stuff, where the fee for participating is low.
I'm also considering doing one of the online consignment shops. I have a list of shops and all. I was wondering though, is it better for me to make small runs of things for one of the online shops first, to kind of test out the waters, before I try doing a real live craft show? I feel like in order to do a craft show I have to have tons of product, and I make small things, so that would take a long time.
Also, I'm a student, a very poor college student who can't hack a real job. Is it really expensive at first to buy supplies before you actually get selling things? If I was at home, my mom has a ton of stuff, but I go to school 400 miles away from home, so I don't have those resources at school, which is where I want to start this out. My goal is to actually make money, like I would at a part-time job. Is this realistic?
Okay, say I want to embrider something gigantic, and I have no hoop so large, is it okay to pinch some of the already done embroidery between the hoops? Can I iron that out? What if I had sewn down, say, sequins? Then what? Do I just need to find a hoop big enough? Should I do it in sections and sew the sections together when I'm done? Do I need a big quilting frame to do this?
I'm imagining projects. But I don't know what to call them. Maybe they already have a name, which is why I am asking for your expertise. I'm not entirely sure this will be a good description either. But here we go. I'm going to make simple pictures, with large areas to fill in with color. I will fill them in with bead embroidery, regular embroidery, sewn on sequins, couched on yarn, and anything else that tickles my fancy. What is this called when it's done? I don't think I made up this techinique, I think I've seen it before. Is it a needlework collage? A tapestry? Any ideas are appreciated. This isn't vital to my way of life, I'm just incurably curious.
Anyway, the only thing I've ever embridered before has been pillows, so the back of the embroidery is far from sight on the finished product. I'm feeling rather self-concious about the back of my embroidery. Would anyone be willing to post a picture to put me to rest? And I'm planning on making an embridered bag for library books. Just a simple tote bag, with a lining. I was thinking about covering the back of the embroidery with a peice of fabric fusable webbed on for added strength and covering up that uglieness, in addition to the lining. Is that overkill? Am I going OCD on this? Is this not necessary? Many thanks.