By Tracey Kryskowiak
Well hello there! Thanks for joining me. Since this is my first blog here, let me introduce myself! My name is Tracey and I am just starting the process of making crafting my full-time job. I wanted to share my experience with you so that you can learn what to do and what not to do if you decide to try this path. Please don’t worry if you end up laughing at me… I will be laughing right along with you!
Before I go any further, how about a Do Not Do moment?! Do not get your first cast in your 38 years at the beginning of your journey. Especially don’t get that cast on your dominant hand. Yes, it gets you out of cutting the grass, and it’s your favorite color (pink), but it still isn’t worth it. I can’t even decorate it because if I tried arts and crafts with my left hand, it would just be a mess. Seriously, you should see my right hand when I polish my nails. I actually almost spray-painted stripes on it, but I couldn’t get the lines straight, so I put that idea out of my mind. I’ve thought about using my Cricut to make a design, but the cast is so rough. I’m pretty sure I shouldn’t use resin first to even it out, so here I sit, short pink cast on my right hand! In the words of Pepe Le Pew…Le sigh.
So, now that that’s out of the way!! I’ve been crafty for as long as I can remember. I even got licensed to have a home bakery, with my specialty being decorated cookies. But, my problem has always been the follow-through. Ok, ok, I admit it, I’m a Gemini. I get bored easily. Crafting takes time and patience and sometimes even days to complete one project. Ugh, it just sounds soooo boring! See, even now I’m getting distracted and off-topic. This is how my brain works.
Back on point? I started with the Cricut Joy about a year ago. When I bought it, I used the reasoning that I would use it for work (outside the house kinda job). Then I realized all the fun! The first thing I made was for my bathroom. I made a ton of face masks too. I was probably the only one who actually enjoyed wearing them. Come fall-ish, I got the idea I needed the Cricut Maker, so I upgraded! Christmas brought a gift card that I used to buy a resin starter kit. Of course, I became obsessed with resin, so we won’t talk about how that $25 gift card had me putting way more money out.
I started going nuts with personalized cups for myself. I bought double-walled tumblers by the case and would put all kinds of sayings on them. My masks and cups were almost like a mood ring, you could easily figure out what I was thinking by the day by just looking. Having those things all the time got me some orders from my co-workers. I always felt bad taking their money though, especially since it was just for fun at that time. My biggest order was from a girl who had me make her 7 cups for her and her siblings. She insisted on paying me though, so I ended up making a little from that.
Right before Christmas, I started making ornaments. My person (ex-husband turned boyfriend) was curious about what I was doing, so he offered to sell a few on his eBay page. Want to see someone surprised?!! They sold really well. My most popular was my Break in Case of Emergency bulb that had toilet paper in it. I saw it online and customized it a bit so that it was more me. I also sold some random others. It was a struggle though cause I worked retail, so working and then coming home and trying to make orders was tiring.
Fast forward to now. Well, just before the cast went on. I am no longer at my job and the thought of going back to a retail setting makes me tired. I have a college degree, but since I’ve never done much with it officially, and never worked in an office, I kind of didn’t know what to do. My person is supportive and after talking, we decided I would try to make a go of selling my products. He’s so supportive, in fact, that he has spotted me the money to get everything I need to start doing sublimation. I have to be very careful with what I do, but my left hand is adapting, so I’m going to craft when I can. Fun fact, I was once ambidextrous, but then was forced to pick a hand when I started school and now I’m a righty…..or I am when there isn’t a ton of fabric and plaster on my arm!
Vinyl is a lot easier than resin to work with right now. Weeding is a bit difficult, but I’ve just been working on easier projects. Part of this starting a business thing is finding something that is popular and making it your own. I’m jumping on a trend that I think is super cute right now. Milestone markers for baby’s first year. I take way too many pictures, so even though these aren’t something I will get to use, I know I will enjoy making them.
I went onto the Love SVG website and fell in love with almost everything. After going through all the bundles, I settled on The Huge Exclusive Craft Bundle. If you haven’t checked it out yet, you totally should. I am OBSESSED with all the animals and frames in it. Right now, since I’m so new to selling, I’ve only made one of my favorite designs and picked random months. I’m hoping that will be enough so I don’t use a lot of product for it to just sit around.
Well, I feel like I have talked (typed?) your ears off by now. I hope you all will join me again so we can continue to learn together!!
Peace out, Crafters!