Can I Make Etsy Pay?

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Well there might be one or two of you who know that I don’t love my job.  Yeah I’ve hated my work as a IT Professional/Support person for years.  I wish I could have gone further in my career, but I’ve had a lot of stops and starts due to my illness, which doesn’t look good on a resume.  Add to that my many issues with getting along with people, and let’s just say I didn’t set the world on fire.  Well my Bipolar Disorder threatens to set the world on fire, but that’s another story.  Having to work a strict 9-5 job, Monday through Friday is too much for me.  It feels like a prison.

I really love my creativity and it goes in so many directions.  I love that too.  I make jewelry.  I take pictures – pretty good ones, I think.  I do silkscreening.  Batik.  I sew.  I love to decoupage.  I’ve got all these talents, and I’d love to make them my vocation.  There’s this handy-dandy thing called Etsy now, and I’m wondering if I can sell anything there.  My secret fantasy is to ramp up my creative projects, and try to sell them on Etsy.  It seems like it’s a matter of energy, and marketing smarts.  I REALLY want to do this, and transition away from the corporate world to this.  I also think it would better support my mental health, and would work so much better to work with my natural energy flows.

If there are any of you who are able to make a living doing this, or something like it, I’d LOVE to hear from you.  I’d just about die of joy if I could make this transition.  Oh, and it would make a move to Florida ever so much easier.  Will you let me know?  Thanks.  Happy Day!

12 thoughts on “Can I Make Etsy Pay?

  1. My friend Victoria does this atop her child-minding (http://folksy.com/shops/GingerOriginal). From what I can tell, she’s non-stop working and making and plotting, but she does enjoy it. She also does craft faires most weekend. It is generally agreed amongst her friends that she sets her prices almost too low to shift; I certainly think one can find a happy medium that will see their pieces move and actually getting food money.

    Anyways, this is something I thoroughly support if people think they want to take a stab at it. 🙂

  2. I used to sell on Ebay items that I made, paying my bills and my materials off the profits, but between the economy, the changing Ebay market, increased ebay and paypal fees this stopped being lucrative for me. I currently have an etsy shop and do maybe one $20.00 sale every 2-4 weeks. My husband also has an Etsy shop and does much better than me as he offers custom items (which seems to be one of the major selling points for having an etsy shop), but he still teaches college classes as even if it’s keeping his busy, it’s not enough to quit his ‘day job’. There’s nothing to say you can’t start out small and then play it by ear as you go. Many people do support themselves entirely off of Etsy sales.

  3. I have an Etsy store. I started it while hypomanic and avoiding dissertation writing. Go figure, eh?

    If you’re good and you approach it like a small business, you can probably make it pay. But if you’re just poking at it here and there, you might recoup some materials expense (like I am).

    Sounds like you’re similar to me in terms of doing a wide variety of creative/crafty things. I find that I am just using it as one more source of perfectionist pressure on myself, though, so I’ve been attempting to be more “focused”. It’s actually been surprisingly difficult to simply put away some projects that had become just another responsibility to keep up, which makes it stressful rather than something fun. I did give away a lot of materials. I’m working on finishing up projects that are laying around and just keeping lists of ideas for new ones, rather than starting yet another project while everything else languishes.

    • I want to do it like a small business…that is my goal. Thanks for your input. I have a long way to go. So far I have sold…zero 🙂

      I have a lot of fabric to get rid of, I bet that would be a good way to go….

  4. I absolutely LOVE etsy. I am constantly ordering things from there. If you start up a shop I’d love to drop in and see what you make. Your photographs are beautiful.. you could do things like that, you know. I wish you the BEST luck in anything you decide to start. I just wrote a whole long post about living life, actually LIVING it.. so I’m really digging the idea of you following a dream to start a store.

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