ScrollSaw Information and Resources #24: Next Steps - or which way is up

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Blog entry by jerrells posted 02-21-2012 03:18 PM 9500 reads 0 times favorited 3 comments Add to Favorites Watch
« Part 23: Sound Level Reduction Part 24 of ScrollSaw Information and Resources series Part 25: Additional Tools to go with a ScrollSaw »

OK scrollers – I have been scrolling for about two years and have posted many projects. What is next on the business plan. This is the question I can’t seem to answer. What way do you take you hobby/ part time business and still make it FUN. I have kinda been in a lull since Christmas.

I have done many craft shows and they seem fun and I do sell well at them but they seem few at this time of the year. I would love to have one about every six weeks to two months but that is not just happening.

“Word of mouth” selling ain’t working. I advertise through Facebook, many friends know what I do, I pass out tons of cards both at craft shows and anywhere else. I have a photo book that I freely pass around. I have heard from many friends that someone “just wishes they had one of your items”.

I have done more than a few FREE project and for really special causes. I was not looking for any type of return from these however just something.

I belong to The Crafter’s Co-Op (on Facebook) which is a lovely craft store in Wylie, TX that displays my and many other wonderful handmade craft items. The store is only about five months old and is owned and run by a wonderful lady and puts her heart and money into the project. Sales were good in November and December and the Arts and Crafts show that they provided for us to attend was outstanding.

I have looked at ETSY but just can’t make up my mind. is it YES/NO or NO/YES???? Many people do very well there and, I guess, some do not.

Now back to the central part of the question. How do I expand and craft I love so well and still, for the most part, keep it part time. YES I am retired and have lots of free time. IT always seems that each day is filled with something. I think I may have posted this question before however I hope you see that I still do not have an answer. If you do please share – specifics would be nice.

-- Just learning the craft my Lord and Savior Jesus Christ practiced.

3 comments so far

View mainwoodworks's profile


112 posts in 3665 days

#1 posted 02-21-2012 05:23 PM

I have a friend who sells on ETSY, and claims to do very well. I have not tried it my self so can’t say for sure.
He sells boxes (really novice type boxes). Says he has tried EBAY and Craig’s list without any success.
You can take it for what it’s worth.

-- Measure twice, cut once, and hope for the best.

View MrsN's profile


988 posts in 4542 days

#2 posted 02-21-2012 05:34 PM

etsy requires alot of effort to work well, just like anything. You have to go out and do the social networking and stuff to get people to look. There are a couple other similar sites, but no one I know has heard of the other sites so I stick with etsy. I haven’t made it rich from etsy but I’m ok with that. The costs associated with ETSY are pretty low, so it is fairly low risk.
I struggle with deciding if I really want to put the work into selling stuff. I love scrolling but selling is about way more then scrolling, you have to take good pictures and edit them, writing up cool descriptions, posting projects, marketing products, spend time doing social networking things, facebook, tweeting and everything else, chatting it up on forums, not to mention packing up products for shipping, spending days on a project for someone only to have them change their mind. Some times the effort seems worth it, and other times I would rather spend my time just scrolling for fun.
ETSY sort lets me be indecisive. My store is there wether I do much or not. When I feel like doing all the extra work I can do it, and see the results. And the other times I can simply hit “Re-list” occationally to stay partically relievent.

View Sheila Landry (scrollgirl)'s profile

Sheila Landry (scrollgirl)

9239 posts in 3936 days

#3 posted 02-22-2012 10:32 AM

I think you are definitely heading in the right direction, Jerrell. My partner Keith is going through the same thing with his pens. So much of it is trial and error, and finding out which venue sells your product best. It seems that he makes a lot of his sales from word of mouth. That is sometimes hard when you are retired like you are or are like us who work from home. Offices and workplaces are good for spreading the word on your work.

Sometimes donating stuff gets people’s attention and gets your product to others who may not have seen them otherwise. Maybe pick a couple of causes that are high profile and donate a piece or two. It could get people thinking about you more.

I haven’t had much experience with online selling, but like you have heard of good sales and not so good. I do hear that people like Etsy better than say Ebay because of the lower fees. Perhaps you should try it for a bit. You don’t have to go all out, but just test the water.

I think that what will help you the most is to be open to trying lots of different avenues. Find which works best in your own area and put your efforts there. It sounds like you realize that and are already heading in the right direction. Good luck and keep us posted! :)


-- Designer/Artist/Teacher. Owner of Sheila Landry Designs ( Scroll saw, wood working and painting patterns and surfaces. "Knowledge is Power"

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