Once upon a time..in a land far far away…

Called Ohio 🙂

About 20 some odd years ago I became a stay-at-home mom.  After being independent with my own income, it was a challenge to stay home and not have an income.  I struggled with that for awhile, and then found and ad in the paper to do a little sewing.

*A little sewing* consisted of making hundreds of tiny little bears and bunnies.  It didn’t pay much, but it was a little income and it was a foot in the door to starting my own wholesale line of handcrafted items.  I made not just hundreds but thousands, probably tens of thousands of all sorts of little dolls and pins from wood and fabric.  When I was finally done with all of that I was so burnt out on crafting that I never planned to do anything again….

Flash forward to today…I’m not quite sure what got into me, but one of my goals for 2010 was to establish an Etsy shop.  I love Etsy and have spent quite a bit of money there buying yarn from other crafters. I have even ordered a few patterns from people there.

When I started looking at ways to add a little income to cover my travel adventures I first thought about doing some of the fabric gift bags that I use for wrapping gifts.  But looking around Etsy there were other people making that sort of thing, and far cheaper than I would even consider making them for.  Next thought was to handknit baby sweaters and to make matching bags for them.  I could get a better price for them, some of the handknits on Etsy sell for a pretty high amount.  But realistically with my hectic life in Dallas would I have time to knit many sweaters.

One night I got the idea to begin to make dolls.  I have looked on Etsy there are all sorts of dolls, but I didn’t seen any dolls that were like the ones that I have made in the past.  When I moved out on my own, I left behind all of the patterns that I had used in my business years ago, positive that I would never need them again.  I looked online, looked in craft stores, and I didn’t see anything close to what I was looking for.  My plan B was to design a pattern–that was a first for me.  Creating my own pattern gave me the rights to not only sell the dolls, but I can also sell the patterns…my revenue stream just expanded.  🙂

When I did this 20 years ago, I didn’t have a degree in digital communications/emarketing.  There were no interwebz being used by the general population and there was no such thing as social media.  I find myself now on the edge of a unique opportunity to not have to make dolls by the thousands, but to focus on selling them at a retail level through Etsy, a blog and a web site.

I’m getting a kick out of using this creative side of my spirit.  It just feels like it’s the right thing to do.  It’s worth taking a chance and exploring the possibilities.  Twenty years ago my business was called Annie’s Heirlooms…my new business is Something Special by Design.  I’m going to take that little bit of extra special that I put into things I do for charities and for friends into my new little online business.

Official launch date is 02/10/2010…

I’m excited!

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