Monday, June 23, 2008

There's A Storm Brewing

I had an odd weekend. Things have been going fairly well for me, lots of small successes and opportunities, yet I am filled with a uneven sensation. You know that feeling you get when things are going right, but you don't want to get excited for fear that doom is just around the bend. You're just waiting for the other shoe to fall. Yeah, that's where I am right now. I've been burned so many times, I start thinking things are going to work out and then they fall apart. Mark my words, there is a storm coming and I know not what dread it brings, but I'm certain it's coming.

I've managed to make fairly steady sales, create a few new designs that I really like, get a few unexpected compliments and some nice invitations to events I can't attend, but still. I'm fairly certain that all of this must be a fluke, but I'll try and ride the wave to see where it take me this time. All this has gotten me thinking about success and not the existential version full of true happiness, no I mean material success. We all dream of that "one day" success, the kind that is so far in the future that we aren't really applying logic to it. We imagine selling tons of our wares to the rich and famous, making millions or simply paying our bills. This far off imagining always leaves out the logistics of the process. Could you actually make that many pieces? Could you keep up with a constant demand? Could your craft be bought out and mass produced?

When I'm on a good roll, like I seem to be right now, I start thinking about the coveted featured seller position on the front page of etsy. If I manged to finally catch the attention of the admin and were given that spot for three days, would I be able to keep up with the potential demand that seems to go along with it? Well, it's terribly unlikely that I would ever be chosen, but I'd certainly love to find out. I'm afraid that I would just drown under the weight of it. Of course I wouldn't mind having that kind of problem, but I wonder how many people coveting that spot are in the same boat as me. How many of us are dreaming beyond our capabilities? I know that all this sounds mighty self defeatist, but I'm a realist and these are the things I think about when things start to go well. Sometimes it's easier to be in a slump, it's always a bit comfier at the bottom.

7 comments:

jkziel said...

I think lately I've become more aware that my operation--as it is, with me doing design, production, promotion, packaging, shipping, is meant to be small. I can't grow much beyond where I am unless 1. my children do not need me constantly (they are wee ones) 2. I do not sleep. Since I refuse to not be with my children and I do need some sleep, my operation is probably all it can be for now! And I'm just fine with that! Realizing what you can and can't do is a big deal when you are operating your own business.

LazyTcrochet said...

I think I started out dreaming beyond my capabilities, but have come a long way in realizing that it is what it is. Don't anticipate a storm, just enjoy the quiet for now.

thebannerqueen said...

I see clear skies on your horizon my friend!

Sarah Dungan said...

I think, honestly, people are often too concerned about the issue of their supply meeting the demand. In general I find that people will wait for something to be available. I know of more then on Etsy shop in which the owner announces a date and time on which certain items will be posted, because the demand is so high for them that people literally stalk the shop waiting to be the first to purchase an item. I think the dream is actually for demand to exceed supply, the dream is to have no trouble at all selling what you make, no matter what speed you make it at!

thebeadedlily said...

I just loved your last sentence:)

Rachael said...

Once again I have to agree with what you have written. I have my Etsy shop and it averages out that I sell one item a week. It doesn't sound much but when I'm making for my shop and for craft fairs it's plenty. I have recently been offered the chance to take some of my goods into a local retail shop but although that was initially exciting I thought there's no point...I can't keep up with demand!
http://blueshedcrafts.etsy.com

Waterrose said...

I'm right there with you. I guess I want controllable success...lol But I think if the success come we can all figure out how to make it work and still be happy.