This post was originally supposed to be about some new stuff I made before the holidays. I was going to call it New Stuff: Vol. 2. I will get to the new stuff, but I need to say all of this first. I've been in a creative rut. A funk. I've had zero motivation to make new things, write new posts, do anything involving any of my creative small business pursuits, and that makes me feel like shit. I know I can contribute this to several things: part of it is due to the fact that I moved in mid-October and my sewing machine is on Long Island. Any production is limited to the weekends. I thought about bringing my crafting paraphernalia to my apartment but I simply do not have room for it all. I also have a new boyfriend and quite frankly, he's one of the best things to ever happen to me, so I'd usually rather hang out with him than coop myself up in my room with some fabric. Excuses, excuses.
Here's the biggest thing and I've whined about this before: I don't sell very much stuff. I sell one piece here and there at the farmers market during the summer (jury's out on the winter market. We just started so I can't make any judgements yet). I had a tough year with "craft shows" and I put the word in quotes because my products were some of the only true crafts at many of those fairs. I guess my point is, I'm hesitant to make anything because I can never seem to get rid of it. My Etsy shop has fallen by the wayside. To be fair, I need to do lots of updating and face-lifting, but I have a lack of motivation to do said updating and face-lifting. I've also fallen off the blogging wagon, and I hadn't been on the reading wagon for months until recently (more on that later).
All of this troubles me because as I've mentioned in my previous post about being a Maker, this is all a part of who I am. I am part of a creative small business community, so you can imagine the extreme identity crisis I suffer when I think about what it would be like if I just quit all of this. Do you care about any of this? Do you care to read my whining?
2014 was a weird year, especially the last few months of it. A lot happened: Countless shitty craft fairs, a declining farmers market, a royally botched wholesale project. I got into a couple of retail shops, which is great, but again, I sell very little. All of this makes for a real lack of inspiration. Why do I do any of this if my hard work is going to just sit in my closet and collect dust? Granted, lately I haven't been trying terribly hard to promote my work but when I was, it didn't yield much. It's difficult when I look at my peers in this space and they're all killin' it, some even quitting their day jobs, while I'm over here on the metaphorical street corner acting as a human billboard for my business. I know it's bad to compare myself to others. It's the worst possible thing I could do. Self-sabotage, even. But it's difficult to fend off that demon. Do I want to quit my day job? Not necessarily, but a demand for my goods would be nice.
It's a lack of inspiration is what it is. I need encouragement and inspiration. I need a reason to produce. Below are some photos of what I had been working on, back when I was telling myself I was going to build entire collections of work. I think I do beautiful work, but why doesn't anyone want it?
What do you think of my new pieces? Please leave a comment, I'd love to get your feedback.
Onward and upward, Emily.