Saturday, 19 November 2011

I am a maker, not a seller!

I have a huge respect for anyone who makes their livelihood “selling”.  From market stall traders, sales reps, even shop assistants, and anyone else who goes out every day of their working life and SELLS, SELLS, SELLS!

 It doesn’t come to me naturally, I am not even a chatty person, and I would go as far to say, “I hate selling!”

I am a maker.  When I started crafting, after borrowing my sister’s sewing machine (I now have one of my own!) and teaching myself how to use it, I realised that I needed something to make!  What was it going to be?  It was a bag, and then another, and very soon I became hooked!

These two early bags are so special that I have never sold them, but no one would be interested in buying them!  However, my next couple of bags did sell.

When a bag sells, I do mourn its loss for a while.  I feel that a piece of me has gone with it.  I spent time and effort and lots of creative energy in making the bags, so I guess that is reasonably normal!  It’s an uncomfortable feeling mixed with pleasure! The fact that the bag is giving someone else pleasure always gives me that buzz!

After a while, and lots of sewing and creating, I began to realise that I was accumulating quite a few bags and thus a storage problem.  I needed to sell them to recoup some of my expenditure, and also I thought it would be nice if I could find the bags a lovely home, appreciated and valued by a potential buyer. 

I tried Ebay briefly and my first bag to sell was this:

The woman who purchased the denim tote bag was very appreciative.  In fact, quite a while later she emailed me to say that she took the bag to a Women’s Institute event, and the bag was much admired and people were impressed by the sewing etc.  High praise indeed for a self-taught machinist who only learnt in recent years!  I was quite chuffed!

Being a maker of bags, (I have also branched out to other items,) is a very satisfying occupation.  I get to choose the design, the materials, when and how to do it and I simply love what I do.  In my self-made collection, my current tally of bags alone is in the region of FORTY plus without the purses and other items!  It was time to explore other avenues so that is why I joined Folksy, and opened my little shop “Handmade by Edwina”.  I opened it, little knowing that I would also be expected to promote my bags – my worst nightmare had come true “selling”!  I was expected to promote the items in my shop, to be active on the forums and to list frequently – the only way to sell.  But, as I said before I am a maker, not a seller.

I have the greatest respect for all those folksy sellers who run busy households, and/or hold down a full-time job.  How do they get time to do their creating AND promoting of their shop?  I feel my time is now compromised.  All I want to do is create, but now it is much harder to find the time, especially if I also do craft fairs, which always need a lot of preparation. RANT OVER!

This next bag was one of my earlier bags that I made.  It has always had a lot of interest shown in it but no one has dared to buy it.  Why not?  This bag is available to purchase in my folksy shop.  Would someone please tell me what is wrong with my bags that no-one wants to own them?  I DARE YOU TO BUY ONE TODAY!
You won’t be disappointed, I promise!  Please visit my shop:

BFN, Edwina


  1. Lovely to read your post, and I LOVE your bags (haven't come across them before). I've been on Folksy for 3 years now and have had a small amount of myself (each one is fabulous). Keeping on top of the housework, home educating the children and crafting is hard work and sadly the crafting is always the thing that comes last. I promote a little through my facebook page and contribute a small amount on the forums, but most of my promoting is through Twitter - not hard sell stuff, just chatting to others (they're all so lovely) and throwing in the occasional promotional tweet. People get to know you and your products very quickly. I tweet and sew most evenings - another reason why my shop doesn't fill up fast!!

    You could try adding a link for each of your bag photos. People often click on photos so it's beneficial if it goes directly to your shop. You could also find a Folksy badge (it's somewhere on the Folksy site - probably under Q&A) that links to your shop and place it in your side bar.

    Good luck - hope you gets some sales soon.

    Elaine, Ellie's Treasures

  2. Thanks Elaine for your lovely comment and advice. Certainly will do the photo link and also get a Folksy badge!
    Thanks for reading the post. Edwina