Monday, 7 May 2012

The Agony and Ecstasy

I receive a huge amount of pleasure from making my journals and notebooks, so I thought I would display some of them on my blog.  When I am working on them, I am in my element, totally absorbed and feeling very creative and happy.  I love choosing all the fabrics and lace and stitching all the elements together.  When I am handstitching on the buttons, there is a slight tinge of sadness because I know I am approaching the end of my pleasure (buttons are usually the last thing I stitch before binding the cover to the hard back book.)

One of the sad things about my journals and notebooks is that they don’t sell as well as I would like, and I am not sure why because they get lots of positive feedback!  I have been wondering, and considering, making just removable covers instead; perhaps these will be more popular!

The gaps between my sales on Folksy can sometimes seem extraordinarily long – ten days to two weeks often seems like an eternity!  All the old doubts creep in – will I sell again?  Why aren’t I selling?  What’s wrong with my stuff? Where are the customers?  Are my prices too high/low?  Do other sellers sell the same items cheaper?  What am I doing wrong? And so forth... and so on.  sometimes I feel like I have dropped through a black hole totally confused and perplexed!

This is the agony of selling on Folksy.  Unlike some sellers I don’t have sales every week or every day!!!  They are few and far between!  True, I did celebrate six months of selling on Folksy recently and I had achieved sixty sales, but that works out to an average of ten sales per month.  I suppose it is not a bad average compared to some sellers, but I it is not a great average compared to other successful sellers either!

I try and sell my items because of the compulsion I have to make them!  Creativity is what I live and breathe every day.  Even when I am not physically working on a project, I am often thinking about current ones, future ones, and new ideas for projects!  I am constantly inspired to make something beautiful, something eye-catching, with texture and yet also something that will have a practical purpose.

I don’t have a huge amount of storage space available, and I am at my limit really, so I have to sell to create more space for new items! 

Sometimes, just when I am at my lowest ebb I have a sale or two and suddenly the sun is shining and I feel loads better!

I love seeking out the purchased item from its storage box and lovingly wrapping it up in pretty tissue paper. I get a kick out of winding the lovely satin ribbon around it. Then I pull out a grey postal bag and cellotape a large typed label that I have printed off from the computer on it.  Then, off it goes to the Post Office! It gives me a huge amount of pleasure to send the item to someone who has paid money for it.  But the pleasure doesn’t always end there, because after a day or so, I sometimes receive some lovely feedback that cheers me no end!

This is real feedback that I have received from my customers!

“Beautifully packaged, arrived quickly. Love both purses. Many thanks.”

“Beautiful Bag from lovely seller/maker Highly Recommended to all, Such lovely work. Thank You.”

“Lovely bags very well made, pleased with my purchases and the prompt delivery. Thank you.”

So this sums up the Agony and the Ecstasy of selling on Folksy – there is lots and lots of pleasure, but also for me, lots of pain too!

To finish here are a few of my favourite things from Folksy sellers:  NOfkantsCurios, UniquelyYours Accessories and Gifts, Whimsy Woo Designs, and PollyKrafts.



  1. Your journals and notebooks are so beautiful Edwina. I can't understand why they don't sell more.

    Removable covers might work better - my Book Cover Bags sell quite well.

    Get yours on Etsy as well as Folksy, I bet they would do well.

    Thanks for including my Beach Huts kindle cover.
    Shirley x

  2. I know how you feel about the highs and lows, I feel the same. I keep making but this time of year the sales are non existent. I think we all go through the whole cycle of doubts regularly, you are not alone.
    Thank you very much for including my shoe clips in your lovely selection, it is much appreciated.


  3. You do make beautiful creations. I think we all go through the highs and lows cycle constantly, you are not alone there.
    Thank you for including my shoe clips in your lovely selection, it`s much appreciated.


  4. What an honest post. We all have ups and downs - my solution was to sell in more places so that if I don;t get an Etsy sale I do a Folksy and vice versa.

    I think removable covers would work well. I have a gorgeous diary cover from Leanne Woods and am happy to pay a bit more if it's going to last a bit longer.

    The only other thing I would say is Tweet more! I've had 3 direct sales from Twitter this week - it works!

    Dottie x

  5. A lovely and thoughtful blog, I think we all feel the self doubt at times, but you really should not doubt yourself as all your items are wonderful and your notebooks are truly gorgeous! Of those you you have featured, I particularly like the Japanese themed one, I love anything oriental.

    It would be a good option to offer as removal covers, I think it would give people a choice and enable reuse, giving more flexibility.

    I know I have adored all your items I have purchased!

    Thank you so much for showing my hexagonal handbag today, so kind of you!

    Natalie x

  6. I know exactly how you feel because my thoughts mirror yours exactly. I haven't been selling well on Folksy for a few months. I think a lot of it is because poeple just haven't got the money. I've opened an Etsy shop hoping to get some sales through that and I have sold one item already but since then not even a whisper of a sale. Like you, I get lovely comments and feedback but no dosh! I think it's maybe a good idea to do removeable covers on some of them at least, maybe not on all of them. They are very beautiful and well worth the money. I love your bags, too. They're fantastic. Hang on in there and perhaps the economy will pick up a bit soon.
    Many thanks for including my flowery scarf. You are elcome to include my items any time! :)
    Polly x

  7. I love your journals! They're really beautiful and classy.

    Sales seem to be slower for a lot of people lately. I suppose it's due to the economy. Fingers crossed it will pick up soon.

  8. I do think removable covers is a great idea - that way you can promote the fact that the covers last forever, as long as they fit standard size notebooks.

    I'm not selling much at all at the moment on Folksy, in fact I never really have. But I do view each sale as a success and it pleases me to think something I've lavished care on to make has found a special home. That's my consolation! And having even just a few sales gives me an excuse to keep making!!