Tuesday, March 3, 2009

Homespun from the Heart trip down memory lane...

This April, Homespun from the Heart will be 5 years old! Can you believe that? I am amazed at how quickly the time has gone by. I have to take a little trip down 'memory lane' about my crafting and where it started... I hope you will indulge me for a few minutes :)

I have been sewing for a long time, I started way back in the Girl Scouts around 10 years old. My goal was to get that badge on my sash (which I did and I still have that sash believe it or not!). I didn't pick up sewing again until after college, when my dad & stepmom bought me a sewing machine for Christmas. Carol is a quilter and sewer so I started getting interested in what she was doing. I also had started crafting with a friend of mine - making things like Eucalyptus swags, wreaths, little odds and ends to decorate with.

When I got my sewing machine well, let's just say I fell in love with sewing. I made Christmas tree skirts, stockings, table runners, curtains - things to decorate with mostly. I turned my dining room in my apartment into a craft room! You couldn't eat on that table because it was covered in 'stuff'. When I moved to my own house, I made sure I had an extra room just for my sewing and crafts.

I started selling my work, having home craft parties and those went over really well. Through word of mouth, I sold lots of my work. I branched out and created some baby and kids things too, which were a great hit. All the while, I kept thinking .... okay if Martha Stewart can make a living with her crafting, why can't I??? I wasn't making enough for that and I needed my corporate job to pay the bills.

Soon, I met my husband-to-be. Mike and I got engaged, I sold my home and moved to PA (and was laid off in the process from my big corporate job). He kept telling me.... take your time, figure out what you want to do. I didn't really know? I thought I wanted to just do a career change and work in education somehow. I love education - I have a master's degree in Adult Learning and spent alot of my corporate career in some type of learning job. I had a little voice tell me... what about creating/crafting??? I kept telling it to be quiet! I was practical, how could I make a living with that?

Well, time passed and practically speaking I needed a good job with health benefits so I accepted a position at LCCC, a local community college. I met some amazing people, many of them I am friends with still today! But... the job wasn't for me. It was a job as a Retention Advisor, trying to convince the students in trouble to stay at college; well it was a losing battle. I felt like a truancy officer and just did not agree with the concept philosphically.

So that little voice kept talking to me about creating/crafting. I started to listen. I started searching for ways to start a website. I peeked around on eBay and saw lots of neat things being made. I stumbled onto a primitive rag doll - WOW I loved it. Then I bought some patterns and started making dolls. I did this on the weekends or at night; I started coming home from that job and would run for my sewing room :)

I bought a pattern from someone who had a website with Prim Mart. What's that? So I clicked on it. WOW I could have my own website for $20/month?? NO need to know programming or complicated things? I'm IN! So I registered my domain name in early January and signed up for my website shortly after that. I worked alot of hours for a while to stock my site, keep up with shipping, etc. It was VERY slow the first few months.

But I didn't give up. I was so motivated to get OUT of there so I did alot of investing in advertising, promotions, and product. Eventually it paid off and I was able to leave my job and do this full time.

It was hard work but worth it. Now I can stay at home to raise my little girl and also do what I love and help support our family while I do it.

Okay so now you know how we got our humble beginnings! I am rambling but i have some more things to share so I will get to it in another post :)

1 comment:

TeresaM said...

Just think Cindy........... you can be a Girl Scout in a another couple of years!!! I loved doing that with my girls. Our crafting careers started out pretty much the same way! You have me thinking if I have any pictures of some of my early creations!

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