I just read an intriguing post by Rice Freeman titled "Why I Don't Sell What I Make" -- check it out. Every time I consider opening an Etsy shop or selling at craft fairs, I've faced the dilemmas she mentions.
When I had a small antique shop years ago, I sold some handmade items and crafts that my husband and I made. We had a booth at a local flea market once a month, and it was fun because we made a lot of friends. Was it worth the effort? Not financially, but we were younger and more energetic then and other rewards were worth it. As we were already selling antique and vintage items, adding the crafts to the lot was no more trouble as we were already keeping inventory and tax info.
Now, however, even though I sometimes want the validation that someone would want to buy an item, it seems like an awful lot of trouble to determine price (which would never be worth the investment of time and energy) and go to all the effort of selling and keeping track. Dilemma.
On the other hand, making art quilts for AAQI is definitely worth it because the money goes to Alzheimer's research. I love that (!) and all of the generous people who are involved in making, donating, and buying the quilts. It makes you feel good about your work and the purpose it serves. I'd certainly donate dolls in the same way, if it were to raise money for a good cause.
Right now, the Alzheimer's Art Quilts Initiative December Auction is underway, I've already bid on a couple! The money raised on each quilt goes to research; can't lose, you purchase a little art quilt and the money goes to research for a cure for Alzheimer's. Win/Win.
One reason I'm working on my studio re-arrangement is so that I can make some more AAQI quilts. I need to have my cutting table available--so my other crafting must be transferred to another surface (at least temporarily), and the table given a new orientation.
Where has this week gone?