Thursday, November 17, 2011

Inspiration


I haven't made much jewelry lately. Really, I've hardly made any jewelry at all in the past few months and when I have I haven't felt very inspired. I'm come to the realization that I've started making things with selling in mind and let that reason sort of take over from making things because I like them, because I've been inspired. The last number of items I made were because I was trying to get stock together for consignment, following a store owner's suggestions. And while her input is really valuable, I sort of felt like I was losing control over my pieces - like I wasn't following my heart anymore. I also started limiting my creations in terms of money - I resisted making things that would cost more for fear that they wouldn't sell, or wouldn't sell for a while. These are all good things to keep in mind (outside input, cost...) but they sort of dampened my spirit. I was down near one of my favourite supply stores the other day on an errand and even though I didn't really have the money to spend on supplies, and I didn't really need any supplies, I let myself go in. I ended up buying a number of things, including the three items pictured above. Things that made me go "oooooh, beautiful!" , that I was already dreaming about making into gorgeous, magical necklaces. And I realized I really missed that, and hadn't made things for those reasons in a really long time. So my advice to other makers is to make sure you make some things for the pleasure of it: the things you dream about or that make you dream. That geode slice definitly cost more that I'd usually spend on a pendant, but I finally caved because dammit, I LOVE geodes, I think they're unbelievably magical and beautiful and I always drool over jewelry made with them, so why shouldn't *I* make something with them? I'll really enjoy it, and even if they sit around for awhile before they sell, it's totally worth it. Yes, I'll still make some earrings and silk cord necklaces and other nifty things, but I've realized that those special silver charm necklaces are my ~thing~, and I need to make sure I let myself have fun making them more often. You've gotta be able to keep your passion going - otherwise what are you doing it for? I'm pretty sure none of us are doing it for "the money." (At the going consignment rate? HA!) Really, I think when you make things that you're really inspired to make, rather than "I ought to make this" or "this might sell well," it shows, and makes your work so much more special.

If you want more Etsy tips, Sarah did a great post recently with her top pointers.

5 comments:

CaL said...

I'm so glad you found your inspiration again! I feel like any creative outlet needs to be stepped away from for a while in order to be appreciate by the creator...if that makes sense. Or maybe I'm just hard on myself. But I love the pieces you got & I really think that you should make things because you love what you're making, not because it's what people want. Kudos!

Sarah said...

I agree a thousand times over. So glad that you wrote this, Stina. And so glad you're making things for the sake of making beautiful things! Can't wait to see your new creations!

beca said...

it's so hard to be in a business where you want to make the things you love but also want to pay the bills. I struggle with that often, Doug too. We know what is popular in our shop, but often times it isn't what we want to make. a fine line. Your thoughts are so easy to relate to. Good luck getting back to you! I cant wait to see what you come up with!

Hello and welcome... said...

You know what?...I love that you LOVE geodes! That rocks. Great to read about what makes you tick...it's something different for everyone!

Stina G said...

Cal: Thanks! And totally. I think it took that break from making things for me to really think about it. What I make, why I make it, why I wasn't feeling inspired. It gave me time to realize I need (or want) more focus and direction for my jewelry, which I think will just be putting more focus on those necklaces.

Sarah: Thank you! I can't wait to make some beautiful new things and share them. I need some time off now! (Didn't expect to be saying that so soon, haha. Work is good! Just very time consuming).

Beca: Totally. And I have the luxury to experiment more in that way since I'm not in any way living off jewelry money!

"Hello & Welcome": Thanks! Rocks rock! Har har. You're totally right! We all have our quirks :)