What Bloggers Should Mention About Etsy

If you are like me, you want to find a way to earn some extra cash. Being a stay at home mom (SAHM) can be tricky when it comes to making money since you are probably a SAHM because you don’t want to pay for child care. There are all sorts of Pinterest post about side hustling and the biggest one they push is Etsy.

Now, I had a shop and I love making and creating but when it comes to needing to make some money it’s not always the best answer. Here are three reasons why.

 You need money to get started

This was something at first wasn’t a huge deal until I tried to branch out and add things to my shop to keep up with the trends. So if you are short on cash, you might not want to do Etsy unless you have a stock pile of stuff somewhere. And even though you have spent all this money, you have no idea how long (if ever) it will take to make it back.

You need time

 Now if you happen to have a crap ton of products in your closet or something then you might not have this issue. But I realized that there was an issue here. The majority of my products were crocheted and it takes me 6 hours to make a simple baby blanket. It costs me $15 in supplies and I charge $30 for it. So in total, I make $2.50/hour. Can you see where it is a little tough at times? I mean I love crocheting so I didn’t mind except when I didn’t get any orders and that leads to the last point.

It takes a lot of time promoting the shop

And I mean A LOT of time. You have to do Pinterest, Instagram, Facebook, Twitter to get the word out for free and then Etsy promotion that you can pay for. But then again, if you want promotion on the social sites then you have to pay for those too which means more money that you probably don’t have. And you have to post all the time to make sure you are getting full exposure so it was a full time job to just get the exposure out and even then I wasn’t getting the buyers. So if you have a full time job, it would rather tricky to do all the posting.

Now I don’t want you to think that I hate Etsy or anything because I don’t. I love my shop but I just had a tough time keeping up with the already established shops. And I didn’t have the time with raising my daughter and life to do it “right”.

So, before you open a shop, I would suggest you to really think about if you have the time to do the shop for the little reward you probably will get. I would suggest you go and do craft fairs instead. I know they only really come around during Christmas time but the buyers are there I you will have better luck.

Happy crafting! 🙂

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How to Serve Others While You Hurt

If anyone is like me, then you have had some hurt in your life. I have had quite a bit in the last year especially with losing all my possessions and four babies. Talk about a hit to the heart, but there is always a choice when it comes to grief. You can turn into yourself and become nothing but a shell or you can use your grief as a gift to help others. It took me a long time but I decided that it’s worth it more in the end to help others than to only concentrate on myself. One of ways I do that is through my Etsy Shop.

Why do I love it? It gives me a chance to create and produce something productive when I feel like nothing is good in my life. You can’t help but smile at something you have made yourself. The extra money is nice but you will notice that I have one item in my shop that is more than the rest. I happen to love to make baby blankets which seems odd right from someone who just lost four babies right? Why would I make something that someone else will buy for their baby when I have just lost mine?It doesn’t make much sense does it I know, but I see it as a way to look outside myself and bless someone else even if I don’t feel blessed right now.

The other thing that I would suggest is to engage with people who are going through the same thing that you would like to be doing. I know, this sounds even crazier than the first thing, but it is true. One of my best friends and I were pregnant at the same time. Our babies were actually due two days a part. When we found out, we were so excited because there is nothing more fun than being pregnant with a best friend (I have many by the way). When I lost my baby, it could have really ruined things with my friend and I because she was nervous about what she could tell me  or not about her pregnancy. I didn’t want her to cut me off so I made the decision to be there for her and engage with her pregnancy even though I had lost mine.

Can you see where I am going with this? I was able to be a blessing for my friend and experience her pregnancy with her because I was able to come out of myself and see those around me. And it has been fun going on this journey with her. If I hadn’t taken that step, I would have missed out on something really great. Now, I will not sit here and tell you it has been easy reading her texts about her baby moving and doctors appointments. I am not perfect in any way. I have to fight jealousy everyday and that isn’t something that is probably going to go away soon, but there is a way to be jealous and happy for someone else at the same time. you just really have to keep your heart in check.

My next big test in this area is coming up soon since her baby shower and I am going to it. I have no idea how I am going to react. I could be all tears or I could be all smiles. Her shower is actually a week before my husband’s vasectomy which is going to add a whole other layer to the day. It’s the last week that my husband and I can decide whether or not we are really going to go through with making him sterile. Hard right?

So I have to keep myself busy and I have decided to go full bore into her gift to be a blessing to her instead of pining and dreading the day. No one likes a person like that for sure. I don’t want to be angry my whole life. I want to have the joy of the Lord shine through me and to show that my hurt doesn’t define who I am or what I can do. Also, the projects are really fun and turning out super cute. I can’t wait to due a post about it. This one item is so cute, I just might make on for me.

The point being, don’t let your hurt keep you from serving others. I might sound like I have it all figured out, but there are still many days where I have to just sit there and and say over and over again “God is good” because at that moment it doesn’t feel like it. I have a whole other post planned for that topic so I won’t go into it now. But just keep your chin up. Things will get better.

How to Build a Box Shelf

Hello everyone! I am going to do a “How-To” post today and I think you are going to enjoy it. Have you ever wanted to try building something with your bare hands but not sure how to do it? Well, today I am going to show you have to make a box shelf. I had all this spare wood in my back yard and I decided that I was going to make something out of it. I had seen these box shelves online and thought they looked pretty cool, so I decided to give it a try without any previous wood working experience.

So first, you need to get your stuff together. I got literally make this by hand since I couldn’t afford a circular saw right now. So, if you have a circular saw, I would suggest you use it 🙂

You will need:

  • A saw of some kind. (I used a hand saw and it worked but it took a little bit more elbow grease to do it.)
  • A hammer
  • Wood
  • Nails
  • Sanding Block
  • Pen
  • Tape Measure
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Here is everything I used. Please excuse the dusty table.

Next you want to cut your boards to size. I was using fence boards that had already been cut in half so my shelf was 19″ x 17″ x 5″. You can make it how ever big or small you want. Just make sure you wear gloves and glasses for safety.

Next, comes the hammering part. I like to cheat and hammer the first set of nails partially in because I didn’t have a grip or anything to hold the two boards together. Another way you could probably do this, but I didn’t think of it til later, is using wood glue to initially make the box and then nail it together. But you would need something to hold it in place while the glue dried.

img_20170201_130836891Now it is time to actually hammer them together. Take your boards and make and L out of them. I placed the bottom L between my knees to hold it steady and then place the board with the nails in it on top of it. Now hammer the nails in 🙂 Repeat this until you make a square. (I put in four nails but you can put in more if you feel you want the shelf to extra secure.)

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Look! A box! Good job! Now to sand. I used a 120 grit sanding block and it was just enough to get the roughness out of the wood without removing the natural grain to it. Once you have finished going over the whole thing, time to move on.

The next part is the part I think is the most fun and that it painting the thing to whatever color you like. I chose a nice teal for my shelf and this was the paint I used. (No money paid for advertising.)

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You can use the can and brush method if you want but I like spray paint because it dries quickly and there are no brushes to clean after. But make sure you wear a mask or you might have an adverse side effect that comes with breathing toxic fumes. Depending on the type of board you use, you might need more than one can. I wanted a more white washed (or should I say blue washed) look so I only needed one can. If your wood is really thirsty and you want it completely covered, you will probably need two or more cans.

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SO PRETTY!!!! After you paint it, you can add layers until it is the exact color you want. If you don’t end up wanting to paint it, I would still use some kind of a wood sealer just to protect the wood from spills a stuff from the things you end up putting on it.

After you have your final layer of paint, I would suggest you let it sit for 24 hours to fully set. It would be a bummer to have a colored square on your wall because the paint transferred. I know you are super excited to get it up and show it off, but you need to wait one more day. But after that, it’s finished and it will look gorgeous.

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This is how mine turned out and I am super happy with it. Want to make one? Great! Now you can, but if it’s still not up your alley but you want one of these shelves anyway, feel free to order one right now from my Etsy Shop HERE. I would love to build you one!

Happy building! Have a great day!

Is It Christmas Yet?

Ok, I haven’t done an Etsy post in a while and I know that Thanksgiving is tomorrow but I know we are all really thinking about Christmas. I know I am. I actually have almost all my shopping dine but I am really strange and start in August. So all of you how are not like me, I thought I would show you a few things that might get you into the holiday spirit from my Etsy Shop.

This one I want to show you is BRAND NEW to my shop (like seriously five minutes ago).

Owl Christmas Stocking

Isn’t it cute? I love the owl’s little flower eyes.

That is just a taste. I have so many other things in my Etsy Shop that I just love. If you love My Little Pony, Yoda, Sharks, and rugs, I have things for you. And I look forward to adding for items for next year. My shop maybe be small compared to others, but I can guarantee happiness and quality with every product I make. And I enjoy doing it. So why not make some holiday cheer and order from an Etsy shop owner today!

I Love Filling Orders!

So I have an order that came in for one of those eat me shark blankets and I am so excited about it. I found this great pattern from YARNutopia for it and got crocheting away. (If you want some awesome patterns, check her out. She is my favorite crocheter. I can only wish to be as good as her someday.) I am now about half way done with the body and still have a long way to go but I getting there. So if you want one, I’ll be posting this item for sale on my in my Etsy Shop once I have this product done or you can leave a  comment below with your email and we can work something out 🙂

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This is what it is going to look like! (Photo from YARNutopia)
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This is what it currently looks like 🙂

Trying New Things

My brain feels like it’s mush right now. I am trying so hard to make this marketing thing work not only for my Etsy ShopHandi Works of Grace but also for when I re-launch my book. I knew that I had to get better at marketing if either of these things will survive. But I have a hard time knowing where to start.

Where now? Well, I have learned a few tips today that will be helpful but most of it I will have to watch again. It’s amazing how technical this stuff is. And for someone who never really even liked asking someone for apiece of gum in the movie theatre line, asking people to buy my product is even harder. I will be the first to say that I am a horrible sales person. I don’t like sales and I don’t like being sold. So where does that put me wanting to be successful at both my books (and someday books) and Handi Works of Grace and my Potholes Series? I have to get over it.

If I am going to make this work, I will have to get past my fear of rejection and failure and just do it. If I make mistakes then I will have to grow past them i guess. I am not perfect and I don’t like feeling like I have to be to be successful. For example, I know my crochet products are good because people have bought them with the little marketing I have done. That is a complete blessing from God for sure because I don’t know where the customers came from. Therefore, my fear of rejection should be gone right? Wrong 😦 I don’t know why I am so afraid that no one will want my stuff. Maybe because this blog hasn’t done exactly what I planned for it, but that isn’t reason for excuse. I just need to find my path and stick to it.

Who am I kidding. I don’t even know where I am going… Wait! Maybe that is the key right there! If I knew where I was going then where would the fun be? None! So I guess I just need to take a breath, do my homework and wait on God. And when I say “wait on God” I mean to still implement everything I am learning but only He can increase my business. I can do everything right and if this isn’t where He wants me to be then it won’t succeed. But I am going to do everything in my power to make sure that doesn’t happen.

Because I LOVE having an Etsy shop. It’s fun and exciting and something that I really enjoy. And I enjoy writing too! So there it is. As Long as they are things I love to do, then they are worth my time and energy.

Until we meet again, have a great day!IMG_20150725_062330726_HDR