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21  CRAFTY BUSINESS ADVICE / Crafty Business Discussion / Re: Is It Worth It? on: May 31, 2004 10:31:57 PM
What a great thread to stumble across.  I've been debating quitting my other job for a few weeks now, since I started getting really serious about my crafting.  What's funny about this is that I'm already self employed, and being my own toughest boss, I'm having a hard time making up my mind which job to devote the most time and energy to.  My "real" job pays more when it goes well, but I've wanted to run my own craft business for my whole life.  I need to find a way to work the real job part time, and still make a decent living, and then manage my time effectively enough to still get enough crafting done to keep my stock up to date each week. 

Anyone who has successfully balanced their real job and their crafty job, I'd love to hear more about how you did it. 
22  CRAFTY BUSINESS ADVICE / Crafty Business Discussion / Re: Starting up worries on: May 31, 2004 10:24:36 PM
I'm sure if you did a google search for your name, you would be able to find out quickly if anyone else were using it.  That solves that problem.  Copywright can be an issue regardless of the size of the company, but if someone else has your name, and they sell, say, plumbing equipment, you're ok.  It's only a problem if they sell accessories or purses like you. 

In terms of starting up, my advice is find a local flea market or something, get your stuff out there and let people see it, and once you get a feel for what people like, you'll know what to focus on.  Also, simply creating a website out of thin air does you no good if you have no traffic.  Get business cards made up, pass them out to friends, network, email everyone you know.  Web business are unfortunately not like the Field of Dreams.  If you build it, you have to MAKE people come. 
23  CRAFTY BUSINESS ADVICE / Crafty Business Discussion / Re: Mixed bag of questions on: May 31, 2004 10:18:22 PM
I can only respond to #2, since I'm pretty new at the business end of this myself.  I make a lot of things that I've seen other people doing similar things to, but the ways you can make something differently are only limited by your imagination.  I'm sure you can come up with a totally new twist on felt flowers.  And if you do, someone will probably rip off your idea.  That's the way things seem to go.  Just make everything as absolute best as you can, and your customers will appreciate the time and craftsmanship you put into it, instead of thinking that you copied someone else.   

If you read craftster a lot, you forget that the general public probably has no idea how many different people make very similar crafts.  I'm always amused when my customers say "Wow, where in the world did you ever come up with such a completely unique idea?" 

As for being shunned from crafty society, I wouldn't worry too much.  If I ever met someone who was directly ripping my ideas off, in an obvious way, I would probably kick their ass, but anythings that had been inspired by my work, I would be flattered.  Just put your own spin on it, and you'll be fine. 
24  JEWELRY AND TRINKETS / Trinkets and Jewelry: Completed Projects: General / Re: fabric flower brooch on: May 31, 2004 08:55:17 PM
Wow, I've been playing with some scrap flower pins for a while now, and I never would have thought to do it that way.  Good job, I'm gonna have to try that now.
25  PURSES, BAGS, WALLETS / Purses, Bags, Wallets: Completed Projects: Reconstructed / Re: Retro Book Clutch on: May 31, 2004 01:52:00 PM
hey jsut wondering where anyone found their awesome books.... i have millions of my grandpas old books but all the hard covers are jsut plain black.. where ever i go i always look cant seemt o find any truly cool ones...; thanks a bunch

ps... all the bags look super awesome

Plain black is great!  You can decorate it with ribbons, or cover the entire thing with a new fabric, or glue felt shapes on it, just about anything. 
26  CLOTHING / Clothing: Completed Projects: Reconstructed / Re: Smurf Dress from Sheets on: May 30, 2004 09:31:17 PM

she's truly outrageous!
Jem and the Powertones were the good guys, the Misfits were the bad guys, and Synergy was the computer that Jem could talk to through her star earrings (also let her change from her mildmannered regular identity into rockstar Jem)

Actually, it was Jem and the Holograms. 

Fantastic dresses ladies, I just got Noah's Ark sheets (fitted and regular) that I will be attempting to alter tomorrow. 
27  REUSING/RECYCLING/RECRAFTING / What the heck can I do with THIS? / Re: empty film canisters!!!??? on: May 30, 2004 02:53:28 PM
I would put them all together in a box, or some sort of base to keep them in neat rows and columns, and then use it for storing jewelry.  Great way to keep small earring and necklaces from getting tangled.  You could also use the same principle for beads, or sequins, or any small crafty thing you collect.  Just glue one of whatever you have inside onto the lid, that way it's easy to find.

You could stack a bunch of them together and use it as a lamp base, or just a freestanding sculpture.

If you've ever seen spool dolls, you could do something like that, string a bunch together in the shape of a person, and then decorate and dress them. 

You could make a spice rack.

28  MISCELLANEOUS TOPICS / Completed Projects / Re: CicadaMania Wristband! on: May 29, 2004 12:54:40 PM

cicadas are the sounds of summer where I live, too! I want want a wrist band to pay homage to the noisy little buggers!

I am happy to mail these out to anyone who would like one.  I'm charging $10 for them at my booth, and I'll ship for free to people outside DC.  Unless you're overseas, then I'd have to charge some for shipping. 
29  MISCELLANEOUS TOPICS / Completed Projects / Re: CicadaMania Wristband! on: May 28, 2004 06:33:57 AM
Although I may not share your enthusiasm about the critters themselves, this is AWESOME! I love your use of color.

I want to try a more red orange, since that's truer to the beasts themselves, but I'm also gonna go all Warhol on them and do some crazy colors.  Especially for on colored wristbands. 

I'll probably do some on purses too. 

Any suggestions for a background paint, other than my pathetic attempt at splatters?  I'd love it to have a more gritty graff feel, and polka dots don't seem to be cutting it. 
30  MISCELLANEOUS TOPICS / Completed Projects / Re: CicadaMania Wristband! on: May 28, 2004 06:30:28 AM
Hey, I still flinch if one of them flies into me!

The website is coming slowly, because I don't know a damn thing about website design, so I have a friend building it for me.  He's very busy though, and since he's doing it for free, I'm last priority. 

I'll email you some urls of pictures of my stuff though, but really, try to come to Eastern Market this Sunday, it's a lot of fun. 
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