Saturday, August 16, 2008

Is this a healthy obsession? You can make it so.

How shamelessly obsessed are you with your Etsy life? I am pretty new to Etsy. I really knew very little about it coming into it. I was never even a buyer (I know, booooo on me, but I have bought a load of stuff since then!). In April of this year, I decided to list a few of my creative endeavors and, lo-and-behold, people liked them. My first listing was just over two months ago and I am now shamelessly obsessed with my Etsy life. I know you have all been there and still live here.
I am a stay at home parent with two small children (5 and 2) and I consider the work I do for my shop on Etsy as my ‘work’: My real-life, tangible, get-paid-for-it-in-real-money, work. My children are my joy and butterflies and all those other happy, lovely images one gives when they talk about being a mother. All true –most days.
Being an obsessive Etsy shop owner takes its toll on our little ones, loved ones, friends, relationships, etc. I make no apologies for wanting my shop to succeed or being in love with my work, but I do not want it to negatively affect my life, because, then, what would be the point? So, I invested in an inexpensive little timer with a loud buzzer to keep my obsession in check , and what it ended up doing was help me manage my time and invest it where it needed to go – so EVERYONE is happy! Don’t get me wrong, there totally needs to be more hours in the day, but at least now, I have more definite direction of where my time is going.
I typically set up my email/convo time for fifteen minute segments a few times a day. I make sure that after every thirty minutes of Etsy work, I take a break and hang out with the kids – even if that means just getting out the Play-doh or having ‘tickle-monster-time’. For those more involved projects, I wait until my littlest is napping or they are both in bed for the night. Twenty minutes is devoted to setting up shipments for the next day, another thirty to plan new designs, etc. You get the idea. It is all pretty magical. Oh! And if you get real fancy – you can get a timer with multiple features like counting up, so you can hit “start” right as you begin a new piece so you know exactly how long it takes you to create it for pricing. Shamelessly working the double-duty. Gotta love that.


Leaping Lizard Glass Art said...

Great posts! Staying home with the little ones is so important for their mind & soul. Your work is beautiful and unique and I'm glad you love Etsy. It's people like you that give it credibility. Keep up the great work!

Tiffany said...

Very informative post! I am fascinated with the idea of getting a timer. I think I would be able to manage my time a lot better if I did. Your post on wholesale pricing was good as well.

tagisa said...

What you are doing is something I need to implement. It sounds very "FlyLady" (

Great blog!

Lily said...

I 'chunk' my time too. (that's what my child's teacher calls it, anyway). I'm working with etsy as well-- trying to balance family and work, and really wanting to succeed with etsy. I think chunking time is about the only way it can be done. Good luck-- you have beautiful pieces!

I have two shops, one that I've had for a little while, and one that I just started. and

UxCritter said...

Wow! Yes, I need to implement the timing idea too. Lots of time spent online at Etsy, but I am studying it and tweaking my shop and handling it like a business meeting for the most part. Chatting can be time consuming, but usually there is something new to learn that way too. It's getting offline and creating projects that I need the time for specifically.
Great blog!!! Thanks!! And OH SO WONDERFUL ITEMS YOU MAKE!

Bejeweled said...

Awesome post! That work/life balance is so hard to get when one is a busy mom working at home, but sounds like you have mastered the balancing act! I chunk tasks too and it works just fabulously.