Monday, 16 November 2009

Quitting the Day Job Dreams

I know that so many people who create have dreams of quitting their day job and staying at home doing what they love. I have to admit that I have dreams of that as well. Realistically I know that that isn't going to happen any time soon. My day job pays above average I would say so I would have to sell an awful lot of buttons to compensate for that. I couldn't even produce the amount of product needed if I sold every single thing I sold. So what to do. A girl has to dream. I'm in a very non-creative job but the reality is the bills need to be paid. I find myself looking for that "great" idea that will get my product out there. Because of this I've dabbled in so many things it's not funny. Fused glass, folk art painting, ceramics, metalsmithing, precious metal clay, jewelry making and on and on and on. Maybe if I'd just quit buying art supplies I'd be better off instead of looking for the next big thing. Part of the drive to find something is that I'd also be able to have my son work with me. He hasn't really found his niche yet and he's very creative. He makes jewelry for a tattoo shop at the moment and he's very good at what he does. The problem with that is that it's a limited number of potential customers. Not all that many people have body parts pierced in any number of places. This limits his success with this. Being his mom I want to help. The other reality is that when I "have" to make something - such as for a custom order I don't really like it. I feel pressured - what if they don't like it. I'd rather make what I like and then if people see it an buy it that's great. If they don't want it then it's anonymous as I just sell on the Internet so if they don't like it it's no problem. That also means I don't like doing in person craft shows etc. I did a couple a few years back and they were pretty successful but a lot of work and I found them very stressful. So what to do. Is it possible for someone who doesn't want to sell in person/craft shows etc. to make a business big enough and stable enough to really and truly quit their day job. I know lots of people have this type of dream so as silly as it sounds I'm going to try and document what I do as I try to capture that illusive dream. You can all laugh with me or at me as I muddle through. At the very least I'm hoping it will bring a bit of reality to those of you with the same sort of pie in the sky dreams. Perhaps there will even be a bit of valuable information that comes out of it.

Tuesday, 10 November 2009

New and Exciting (To Me At Least) - Hair Pins

I've decided to add some hair pins to my jewelry store. They incorporate some of my buttons that I've made without holes. They are simply the buttons attached to bobby pin like findings - the kind that have the pad so you can glue things to. Anyway, I thought they were cute so decided to incorporate them. I have lots of ideas for using my buttons for jewelry but usually never get around to actually making the items that dance in my head. So many little time. Or rather, so many ideas and so tired from the day job through the week that I don't actually want to get up off the sofa in the evenings to make something. I find if I actually sit down after work to watch t.v. or something I'm done for the night and soon find myself ready to move up to bed where I watch more t.v. before falling asleep. Oh such wasted time. Well tomorrow is Remembrance Day so I will have the day off. I plan to use it make up some of the lost time from my weekend where my computer hard drive crashed (see last post). My husband has installed a second hard drive in my computer so now I have to move the files over and try to organize them in some manner where I can find everything. It will take some time but in the end it will be more organized. Anyway, here are my latest jewelry creations that I mentioned at the beginning of this post. These can be found at and are made with buttons from my other store I have more waiting to list and hope to do that tomorrow as well. Hope you like these.

Monday, 9 November 2009

The Best Laid Plans.......

This weekend I had big plans of getting lots of work done. I had a couple of custom orders for my buttons at and I had several ideas for some precious metal clay and leather jewelry at I got up early and all set to buckle down and my external hard drive was not working. I thought there had to be something simple but finally figured out it was a huge problem. Now I know enough to back up my images and purchased graphics and patterns on CDs and thankfully I had done that. I "think" I have most of my graphics files both purchased and the ones I created. The problem is I didn't back them up in any organized way so while I have the files it's a bit like looking for a needle in a haystack at the moment. Also I know there are some files that I didn't back up. There are a number of letters and things I had written dealing with my parent's estate (they both passed away recently) and for a while I thought I had lost the latest version of my resume. I am very worried that there will be files I later realize I have lost. My husband is quite computer savvy and he tried his best to get the thing working long enough to get the images off. Not all hope is lost though as my son is even more computer savvy but he doesn't live with me and so I will have to wait a bit to get this to him before he can attempt to retrieve the images. In the mean time I am slowly taking the files from my backup CDs and putting them on my computer (they were not stored on the computer before but an external hard drive so my actual computer is working-thankfully!). I do have to load the files and then try and organize them in some way shape or form so I can actually find what I am looking for. Luckily the images I was using for my latest custom order (while they were not saved as a backup-silly me) I was able to find in my email and was able to complete that order. On the weekend I also got a couple of requests for different sizes and quantities and from some "sold" orders so I had to wade through images and find those particular files. Why oh why did I not back these up in a organized way. Luckily I have been able to find all the files I need for my current custom orders and I'm sure I'll get these organized. I am also pretty confident in my son's abilities and feel he'll be able to help me out shortly (crossing fingers and toes). Anyway lesson learned-while I thought I was being smart backing things up, I didn't back up everything so who knows what important files have been lost. I can't think of anything devastating to lose at the moment but I'm sure that will come unless my son is able to come to my rescue. On a positive note with what I've been through in the last few months (losing both of my parents) losing a few files is nothing more than a bit irritating. As I know all to well there is much worse things in life. And just because I can't leave a blog post without some sort of picture here is a pic of some of my owl shaped buttons!

Wednesday, 4 November 2009

Christmas Stocking Kitty Sewing Buttons

Here are some of my most recent Christmas themed sewing or scrapbooking buttons which I added to my www.buttonsbyrobin store on Etsy last night. These would be a really unique and cute addition to a handmade gift for a cat lover. They'd also make a great little stocking stuffer for someone who loves cats and loves to sew.

Green Mitten Snowman Pendant

Here is one of my newest fused glass pendants. As you can see this is a green mitten with a snowman fused in glass I think it's adorable! I'm really loving my fused glass pendants but have had no success selling them on-line. I've sold some at work so feel that it must be they translate better in person than on-line. I also realize I'm not exactly the world's best photographer so really need to do something about that but I find myself frustrated with trying to take pictures. They look great on the camera but transferred to the computer - not so much. This picture is actually scanned on my scanner. I know, I know....I took the easy way out as I didn't want to drag out the camera, try and find the right light etc. etc. On another note my button business at has picked up lately and I find myself going to the post office most days (yeah!). I was actually up at 5 a.m. this morning getting a couple of orders packaged up that came in overnight so that I can get them mailed today. Thanks for the support all you button lovers out there! I really appreciate it.