photo source: Oh Joy!
Looks what’s coming in the mail today…I’m so excited to read Mom Inc., The Essential Guide to Running a Successful Business from Home.
Two years ago, I took a leap of faith and listed my first item on Etsy. A collection of pillowcase dresses, nursing covers and a few bags filled my little shop. I shot all my pictures with my Nikon D40 on auto mode (yikes).
In 2011, I decided to shift over to only selling extra large totes. It was a scary move for me. I knew that nursing covers and pillowcase dresses were good sellers on Etsy, but I did not LOVE making them.
My heart said to make what I LOVE, so that is just what I did! I focused on the extra large totes, started shooting my pictures on manual mode and refined my style. Much to my surprise, sales were better than before. I felt like I found my passion and my niche’. During this time, we moved to a small town (for my husband’s work). This meant a whole new schedule and a shuffle to figure out the preschool situation for our twin boys… my work week was reduced to nine hours per week! I met another mom (former elementary school teacher) and discussed the possibility of watching my twin boys one day a week. This increased my work week to about 14 hours per week. This meant working a lot of evenings after the boys went to bed. This summer we worked out a schedule to watch the boys about 18 hours per week. Still left a lot of sewing for after bedtime, but worked out great.
Next week, the boys will start their 4-year old preschool program and my work week will reduce back down to 9 hours per week! I’m constantly evaluating, trying new things, figuring out what schedule works…Should I continue to sell made-to-order? Should I pre-make and sell ready to ship? How many bridal orders can I handle per month? What tools/equipment will help to optimize my time? How do I stay motivated? How do I stay focused? Is it okay to take a break when I need it?
Working from home, being a mom and running a handmade business has definitely had its challenges, but the rewards always win! I love the flexibility it offers our family. Running my own business has given me a sense of purpose and identity. Don’t get me wrong, I love to be introduced as someone’s mom, but I also love to be introduced as the owner of Lucy Jane. I think all moms struggle to find the right balance between their identity as a mom and their identity as their own person.
Looking forward to a good read and maybe a new perspective…
DO YOU WORK FROM HOME? WHAT WORKS FOR YOU? DO YOU HAVE A DESIGNATED WORK SPACE/ DESIGNATED SCHEDULE?