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Start a Handmade Business

Lesson 5 of 39

Fear and Unexpected Success

Kari Chapin

Start a Handmade Business

Kari Chapin

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Lesson Info

5. Fear and Unexpected Success

Lesson Info

Fear and Unexpected Success

I am going to start out the segment by telling you even more things you need to know about carried shape in I made of this big list of jobs that I've had, and part of why I've done this is because I wanted you to know that we all do so many different things. We all start somewhere we're all beginners, and everything on this list is actually something I have been paid to dio, so I had my first job as ah younger person, I have course headways that I had to earn allowance, but my first paying job that my parents were not my bosses was at a frozen yogurt store in denver, colorado. Then I worked in a card store that I was a nanny for years, all over the country, a long time I did that I've worked in more coffee houses and coffee shops than I can count, and those have been some of my favorite jobs. Actually, I was a beanie baby scout when beanie babies were popular, I would earn money by going from store to store to store, looking for certain beanie babies for collectors, and how that sort o...

f ties into what I do now is I've always been on the hunt for, for things that matter to other people and figuring out like how to get them all together eso even though that doesn't make up a lot of direct sense, you know, that definitely ties into things that I've done today. I've worked for numerous, not for profits as an event planner, marketing person, a volunteer coordinator, marketing public relations all of that plays into what I do now have been a publicist for loads and loads and loads of theaters that's been one of my favorite jobs, and this is what I was talking about a little bit earlier about how I've had a lot of jobs in my life, for that allowed me to write, which was important to me because I knew that I wanted to be a writer. I have worked as I'm afraid where I worked in galleries, I've been a waitress more that I have maybe been anything else in my life. Actually, I've been a private shopper. I was a furniture designer for awhile, I sold my own furniture that I made in art galleries into private collectors. I have been a personal shopper and author, teacher, consultant, I've helped people write their own book proposals. I've done things like this and, you know, I mean, we waive all have so many jobs, and when you really think back to all of the things that you've done there's probably little bits and pieces of all of those things that can help you. Figure out how you got to be where you are today where there was a job that really help you develop your sense of humor really develop your aesthetic or style or just let you know what you wanted or didn't want to dio those are all things that bring us to the point where we are now does anyone have a job that they used to d'oh that they think helps them where they are now marlowe um I was in the theater for quite a bit when I was living in l a it was kind of my first ambition was to be an actress so yeah all of that kind of theater experience being in front of people it helps me even if I do a craft show you know it's relating to people and being able to say something when other people are look looking at me it's so true aa lot of that comes informs who we are mean I grew up with a in a in a theater on one side of my family and definitely a lots of times if I'm really scared like I was this morning before segment one I just thought gonna act I'm gonna act like creative business teacher and liking authored I'm going to go out there and do my job as an actor and so that's often a prompt I use to get myself going a little bit to step outside of myself where my he fears actually hiding so I actually have actually I just want to tell you guys to that I've been fired from a lot of these jobs and a part of that was because when I was doing them I really wasn't meeting my true desire to be free so eventually I did something whether it was not show up for three days in a row or the frozen yogurt place actually fired me and I was fifteen because the cute voice on their skateboards would come by all the time and I was constantly giving them free frozen yogurt and eventually eventually got found out there so whatever but you know all of this sort of ties into who we are now and and you could actually help address some of your fears if you look back teo teo a similar situation that you've had where you have done they can help you move forward to where you are now so I lost one of my most favorite jobs I had as a buyer and a manager and a home good store a few years ago and that was a store in the berkshires of massachusetts and I loved working there we sold primarily home goods that were made by our sister company which were rugs, pillows, sweaters made from recycled sweaters and so we needed to stuck other things in the store to sell the rugs and the sweaters which were at a higher price point and at sea was sort of new on the scene and making iko friendly goods was just gaining some sort of traction and I started writing toe etc sellers saying, hey, I really like what you made there out of, you know, trash bags and duct tape can I buy twenty? What your havoline cheat what's your wholesale costs and people just weren't writing me back and a part of it was is because they didn't have the language they didn't know what I was saying they didn't understand what I wanted to know and when that company and store closed down, I realized I had a book I had written so many e mails to so many people in so many of you blood said, can I share this with my community? Can I share this email with my etc street team? My friend once was approached to show to sell our stuff in a store but she's not sure if she's doing the right thing can you help her that at the end of the day I had a book so when I lost my job I thought ok it's now or never I've always been afraid to write a book I haven't known what I was going to want to do I just knew I wanted to do it, which I think is a pretty common place a lot of us find ourselves in and one day I just said, where is that cliff? Because I'm about to leap right off it and do what I would like to do in the world. And so that's what I did. And I wrote this a little book called the handmade marketplace, how to sell your crafts locally, globally and online. And I just wanted to share who the illustrators were, because that was a really big part of my marketing plan. And we'll talk about that more when we talk about marketing. But I was afraid when I wrote this book that people were going to be like, what number one, why do I need to know this? I'm just going to put my stuff up online and it's going to sell and that's all there is to it and number two, who are you? Um, I see you have a twitter account, and all I can tell from that is that you have two dogs and you drink a lot of coffee, like what makes you the person who should write this book? So I thought that I should rally might community around me to give me some support right out of the get go when I was so afraid that people wouldn't respond to it and that's when I went to emily martin who has an etsy store called the black apple and asked her to do the cover design for me and at the time she was the number one seller on etc and I knew that if somebody was in the book store and they were interested in handmade business if they saw that cover emily was going to sell that book regardless of who wrote it because somebody was going to say I want own that that emily has put her signature on and so that was a pretty good strategy because is here we are but as a response to that book a lot of people wanted to go deeper they had more questions and this goes back to what jennifer asked us in segment one about you know I have this passion what do I do now what I did what I did was I listened to my readers I was getting so many great e mails and comments in such such a vocal response which thank you thank you thank you thank you thank you so happy for that that my customers actually told me what to do next my readers have guided my whole path my readers have said I want to learn more I want a workshop I want a community I need another book I want a consultation I want to know about this I don't understand these new kinds of social media I need you to explain them to me my my audience has guided my entire path and when I have been smart enough to listen to them when I'm not listening to what my people want is when I am really sitting around saying I don't have anything to offer so this this was the second book and this is about business planning and it was illustrated by a wonderful woman in jennifer dead mcgee who but jennifer did this and it's a beautiful paper cut and then this happened just like two weeks ago you guys in the middle of may this is the second edition of the handmade marketplace and this was in response to the first one doing so well and also in response to you our community grows like this it's like thunder and lightning and the way we move forward it's frightening with the speed that we need to know new information and that new stuff happens whether it's social media or the choices that are online venues give us or the things that people want or if it's the way people are expecting to be marketed to that changes so quickly that I was able to write a second edition of the handmade marketplace and this one is the same cover but I just want to tell you that an amazing woman and texas rachel hobson embroidered it for me knowing that embroidery is what I like to do when I'm crafting I can't get enough of that and she had to watch the tv show firefly the whole season like four times while she did this and she would send me pictures of her finger like in a big banded band aid soaking in a glass of ice where she was working so hard because it was actually hours and hours of work and very very thankful of that so all those jobs they had before like finding the right unicorn beanie baby and many editions special from a fast food restaurant and whatnot are all those things added up to where I got to teo wearing them right now tio I'm standing right in front of you and along the way I've been scared of almost every single thing ever so this whole time I have been afraid and I had to face my fears every day whether it was deciding that I was good enough to write a book that I had enough information to share whether it was saying yeah I think I can do a three day course on this or of course I can fly out to meet you and help you at your business no matter what no matter what I've done on this journey I really have been afraid of it all and I think that when we look at information online a lot of times we see these statements that say just say yes uh live on your edge I never really understand those things so somebody someday would explain them to me it would be great because I almost never feel like yes, I feel and ok that's on super great right now and then later because I'm always changing my mind in my direction I feel more like yes it's time to do something new, but once I sort of figured that out, it really helped me get over a lot of fears that I have and that's something I try to work with people one on one with a lot actually because a fear is really distill imitation that you're putting on yourself it's you putting yourself in some sort of bound box saying like you, you can't move past this fear is more than just something to the real thing to be afraid of if you have a fears how how why're you limiting yourself and how are you doing this? So I wanted to get this out of the way in the beginning because it's tough stuff and if you are sitting around scared you're not going to be motivated to be creative and if you're not motivated to be created we're not going to have anything to share and if you don't share what you make with the world then we're all were soft so it's really important to decide that what you make matters and that somebody does want to buy it even if you don't know who they are yet and that it's ok to put yourself out there s o I really want you to know that it's normal to be scared and that it doesn't have to be a place where bad things happen it could be a place where good things start so that's how I try to think of my fair all the time like this isn't bad this is the beginning of something great because the one thing that we all have in common while there's two things we all have in common and that is we all have twenty four hours in a day like beyonce have you guys ever seen that like beyonce has twenty four hours and days I think it's really funny whenever that comes up but that's ok and the second thing we all have in common is we're all beginners we all start somewhere heather you had never made a mixed media piece at one point in time right until the day that you did it right? Absolutely leslie wasn't there a point in time where you did something for the very first time that relates to what you're doing now? We're all beginners we've all been beginners and working through that fear is is a really big part of realizing it doesn't have to be scary, it's just new and figuring out how to feel a different way about that kind of thing. So the fear section of the workbooks starts on page eighteen fears, obstacles and limitations, and I want tio share quote with you by my childhood favorite, judy blume. So judy, blue men just about everything in the world to me when I was in the fourth grade and I still read several of her books annually as a little christmas tradition, I have seen me and judy hang out on the couch, but you know, I really love this each each of us must confront our own fears must come face to face with them. How we handle our fears will determine where we go with the rest of our lives, and I can't say it better myself. If you decide that you're too afraid to do something, then you're just not going to do it. So rather than wallow in your fear, just decide that's not there anything for me and move on, release yourself from the fear and then they guilt that you have from indulging the fear none of us have got time for that, so if you were too afraid to do something, let it go, you'll either come back to it or you won't come back to it or you'll be glad that you let it go or eventually you'll just say that wasn't so bad after all, I'm going to push forward, so if you are really letting fear hold you back, either release it or decide tio push forward, so she says to experience adventure or to be limited by the fear of it. I want tio experience adventure, and even though that doesn't always feel like yes, I'm totally gonna rock that it's still, I love the feeling of like, yes, that's something new and I'm going to do my very best. So see what's this fear have to do is starting the handmade business again, fears are just limitations on you deciding that you're not going to let yourself explore something or be happy about something it's, not something really physically scary none of you are most likely afraid of serious harm from whatever is holding you back from starting a business like, well, if I never get the hang of taking good photos, gonna probably lose a foam for sure, you know that's not really going to happen to you, so your fears and something really happening, it's just a fear of a feeling, a fear of a feeling like no one's going to buy what you make no one's going to like what you make now it's getting care that you made it that you're going to look like a failure in front of the people that are important to you it's really important to get past what what those fears are to figure out what they really really mean and I would like to know what's stopping you from moving forward with their creative dreams you know a for me in the beginning it was I thought nobody was going to be interested in what I had to say that they would just think it was useless information or that they thought I was the wrong person to say it so that was really fears of not feeling like I was good enough to put my work out there so wear definitely going tio get into fears and how to dissolve them in fact that's what we're going to spend a large part of the segment on on but we're going to talk about our ideal days but first I would like tio whoa I'd like to introduce you to this lady emily mcdowell isn't she beautiful? Ladies internet she make stationery and this is one of her cards and it says thank you for existing which I love and you can all visit her on her website emily mcdowell dot com and she has a really interesting story she was an art director for a long time working in advertising agency, but she wanted to do something that was more for filling and something different, but she didn't really know how to get out of this situation she was in and she had always wanted to have a card line but the first year so that she was in working for herself as with the handmade business, she actually managed to put off the card line out of all the things that she did. She tried other things first without doing what she really wanted to d'oh and then the minute she put her first card up on etc, she had something like well, ask her to confirm anything she's something like one hundred of them printed and she put it in a net see store in january of two thousand thirteen on a whim. Eight days later she had sent out thousands as he put it on their facebook pages, saying, like here's a great valentine's day card option and within eight days she had more work than she could handle. Her whole family had to rally their whole house became a shipping station and when she was at the national stationary show just ten days ago, she won five louis awards for her card line because she stopped being afraid of just going for what she really wanted, which was cards just like when I stopped being afraid to write a book, I got what I really wanted, which was a book that was really easy for me, but eso emily's going to join us via skype? So I'm gonna stand over here and we're going to have a chat so and she's going to take oh, my gosh, it's so great to see you. Your choose welcome to creative live thank you. Welcome to the world because there's people all over the world watching us online, he says. Very weird it's so weird. I am really happy to see your face, though makes me so, so glad. It's, emily was just sharing a little bit about your story about how you put off starting the card line for the first year so that you were working for yourself. I did condemn us. Why were you afraid? Because we're talking about here. Yeah, you wasn't going to make up here, okay, just getting I know I didn't think I make money selling cart, right number one you're wrong. I didn't know how I could make money on, and I just didn't think I could, and so I didn't do the thing I really wanted to dio um, I was freelancing and advertising, so I quit my full time job in two thousand eleven knowing I needed to do something else and not having any idea what that wass and so it started freelancing, which you do what you can do in advertising and you take sort of tweet jobs that are like two weeks, three weeks at a time and in between I started drawing pictures going in, writing things, going back to what I love to do as a kid and to try to figure out what I actually wanted to do on I started drawing, I started doing illustrations and I made a nancy store earn started you know? I put them up and I was selling prince eight by ten and eleven by fourteen prints and I really I kept thinking of ideas for cards and I kept being like, oh well, in order to make car, print them out and cut up by hand and fold them and send them and like, how could I do that and sharks four dollars and it doesn't make any sense and I can't get it whatever. And then I started looking tio how people actually make parts and it turns out that printing on your printer is not really the way to go on that you can print them way at a local printer even with digital printing that you could do small numbers for low investment. And so january of thirteen, like kerry was saying, I had this idea for that awkward dick making valentine card that is a card for the person you are kind of dating but like not really dating you got more like you know or maybe like you have a saying but it's not really thing and it would be weird to get them a normal card but then it would be weird to not get them anything right? That is such a and I felt like that such a common relationship that happens on valentine's day and it definitely was true for me for so many valentine's days and so I made a card for it and I put it in my etc storper and they printed a hundred um you know and it was like, you know, the box or something and I fifty I don't remember, but I was like, you know, maybe I'll sell or who knows and as he did, they put it on their facebook page that day and it just blew up and that's the are the internet really is that thing? And if something resonates with it an audience things can just go viral instantly. And so it was everywhere from like buzzfeed nine gag called humor the front page of reddit glamour magazine like it was just all over the place within three days and I shipped seven hundred of them in the eight days that I have before I had to cut off shipping because it turns out that when valentine card you probably shouldn't do it january twenty fifth lesson learned lesson learned lesson learned get an editorial calendar so when you started like from you went from like whim tio wound now basically a little over a year later give us give us a snippet of what your business looks like today oh my gosh my business is it kind of saying we have a two thousand square foot studio in downtown los angeles and I have five about to be six full time employees um and several part time employees and fifty four sales reps and we're in seven hundred stores independent stores plus urban outfitters and paper source and we are about to start distributing internationally in new zealand australia um and canada july one on and we are now we're doing gifts as well as cards tote bags dish towels no pads I was talking about your temporary tattoos yes a little while ago and how much I loved that cat lady forever cat lady for life that is actually you know it's funny and it is sort of a story of the temporary tattoos are being discontinued on I need to get those boss lady ones really quick yeah it's a lesson it's a thing that we learned so my whole this whole time I mean I've been doing this now we launched I launched officially my stationery line at the at the stationery show in twenty thirteen so it's been just about a year that I've had a thing as opposed to myself it's my bedroom drawing pictures and um the every single day is trial and error is pushing through fear is not knowing what I'm doing and just doing it anyway and figuring if I do it wrong, I can redo it, and if I do it right great and most of the time knowing I'm not going to do it right the first time and that that's. Okay, um and so the temporary tattoo thing it came about because I actually reached out to tat lee to partner with them and they never wrote me back. So that's great, I was like, ok, well, I guess they're not interested, but I couldn't do this myself, and I just I people are like, how did you know how to do that? And I and I googled I mean, I just honestly like there's so much information online about how to do so many things, and I I googled touching manufacturing. Um, you have a question I was just going to say, do you mean there's? A place we can go online where we can type in questions and answers just appear like that's, that's, amazing that's going to be one of the top things we learn google there is a magical place called google yeah, it's a the disease has been my mba like I really I feel like I've graduated are not graduated but in the process of going to school at the school of google not in the good news is it's free and the bad news is it's like super confusing but uh but so I looked it up and kind and just figured out how to do it and we just did it and made a small amount of first to see how well they would sell and then made more and it turns out that they sell but the labor involved actually package them and put them together the thing about our tattoos and more tattoos in general I found is that the labor and packaging is more expensive than the actual product on dso and that's true of a lot of things and it's something that you need to figure out in factor and when you're starting to do wholesale business and so it's turned out that it's not we sort of break even on him and it's not it's I love doing them but it's not worth it so we are going tio let go the statues in favor of some other stuff well I can't wait to see what that other stuff is meteo so center business grew so quickly and just exploded its it's amazing but I would think that that would have to be pretty hard I think it's something that we all really dream about and we feel like oh um she's the best selling book like I wonder what color ferrari she got and allow that ladies you know went from zero employees tio fifty four wraps and selling all over the world but it's still it's it's something that you're always learning or there's always things that crop up that make you feel like wait where did that wall come from what just happened there yes yes every day this year's been amazing it's been something I could never have predicted it's been something I never could have even dreamed what happened on dh in some ways it is amazingly fantastic and in other ways it is incredibly hot tiring and hard and and frustrated you know because I have I started out doing this because I love making things and because I love drawing and writing and how where I am now is I have a business and so my time is really eighty percent of my time that has to be sent running the business and twenty percent of my time is making stuff um and it's it's fine I mean I like running a business and some people really don't and some people find that they really really dio and I do like it I like making stuff more but I do like running a business and so that part is great but there are things like just logistics I mean my to do list for this week does not include any creative at all right and in order for me to do the great of I have two car about specific days where I'm out I actually have to leave my own office to do creative work um and go and sit somewhere and not be interrupted for three days straight in order to make stuff because there's just too much other stuff teo to manage and did you see that coming at all means that knows what I'm working with people were talking about how to make their business successful and somewhere along the line they say like um excuse me, you actually get to make anything you know, like I want to hand me a business where does that part come into play because there's so much to just making it chug along yeah and I did see it coming although not to the degree that it that it has been I deaf and he's not coming and I think that you know, going in my my thinking was more like oh, it'll be fifty fifty like I'll you know, draw up in the morning and then in the afternoon I'll have meetings and like that's not what it's like you know, right so like casual like first my sketchbook and my like oh, indeed how much? Yeah, I just had an idea yeah, yeah well, you know it's not like that at all it is not really not like that at all it's more like where's may flask and you know a genie and right like what does this word mean like this person I'm supposed to call with this thing that they dio like what does that even mean? You know what is international distribution? You know, pre ticket it like all of these things that you're like but I just don't know, you know and so it's just an education every single day first her so every day you have to push there's some kind of fear and everyday decide to like just jump off that cliff again and again and again so since everything happened free so fast and you're really sick still very much a new business is there anything that you would tell emily from just a short year ago to look out for or tio do from the beginning um be a little more organized that would help you be really, really organized like the over organized in the beginning because it will help you um it will help you down the line and also just trust yourself. I mean, trust what is inside you, um because really all of the things that you're afraid of khun b learned um they're all things that can be conquered and that can and that and that you can figure out and so don't ever not do something because of fear you could not do something because you don't want to do it or you decide like that's not for me but if the reason under those things is just fear it's not a good reason and not knowing how to do something is not a good reason to not do it um and for me there was a lot of the beginning of like, well, I don't know how to do that and I've heard a lot of people say about especially about things like manufacturing like I don't know how to do that and I've always wanted to do it, but I don't know how and so I'm not going to and something that I really learned this year is that it is possible to just not let that be a reason and there are resource is there people that you can reach out to you? The internet is amazing theirs a wealth of information out there if you want to figure out how to do something don't let fear be the thing that prevents you from going in well said thank you for that. Does anybody have any questions? Family looks like we have some online questions or we can start in our studio any of you d'oh? Yeah great kathy kathy this is tapping and she makes, um party supplies like grant graphic design party supplies and principles for parties so she has something a little bit of something in common with you. Emily your your story is really inspiring and one of the things I've been wanting to branch out with my designs is into stationary thank you's give invites in that kind of thing and I've always spent on that well, I don't know where to find that printer or what that digital market you know, the printing is going to look like and how to distribute them and so I've let it you know, keep me hold me back from introducing the whole line of into my products and I'd be curious, you know, digital printing small printers just find someone local in your in your area so any ideas? Yeah, I agree, so I reached out to some different organizations like the which is that american is an institute of graphic artists that designer and I can't remember but it or just horrible but it but they have a they will have a list of local vendors in your area. I also reached out to some designer friends of mine who do a lot of freelance where I reached out to some card companies a lot of the time people not tell you who your sources are because they fear it proprietary information yeah, sometimes they will sometimes they won't end and I just respect whatever their choices but there are other ways to find it even if your other card companies that won't tell you I would reach out to is not like graphic design organizations in your area will be a little you know but I didn't at first I started when I found a printer was I when and priced out visited and priced at like five or six printers and I mean left a lot to choose from and so I went and found some recommended ones and it was amazing like the difference in price um from like standard and it actually wasn't and so there was like a huge huge range in price if you are looking at making digital sample what if you if you want where this is slightly technical there there's a kind of a digital print how did you get that yeah yeah and it's important that you find additional pressure with one of those who confront at on if your digital samples toe look like offset printed meaning not shiny digital sometimes has its own look which is like a sort of a shiny coding and the off in an offset printed look is like a is a match um on shiny surface and the way that you would get a digital a digital prints will look like a map print is by using an indigo press with uncoated paper stock on dh so that's something that that I learned that I feel like it is valuable information thank you so much for those tips that's where some good sharon way have a question online oh hello emily I'm susan we have a question online from amanda roy who says I fear that I have been dealing a feel that I've been dealing with a lot lately is making my products stand out amongst competition when I first got in my business I was one of the only sellers on etc that made this product today I have several competitors that sell very similar items do you have any advice about how to deal with and stand out amongst competitors? I'm sure that's a fear that we all have oh yeah you think about that actually, um you actually yes here's your future card for you right there? Actually yes so that is a really unfortunate part of what we do as creatives who are selling stuff and really the only thing to dio is tio stay ahead of it um and if people are copying your ideas there's not a lot. I mean, look at anna bond of rifle and she and I actually talked about this a couple months ago and really just looking at all of the cop people that copy rifle huge companies now copy her stuff and just rip it off right and left and you just have to stay ahead of it and you know, your competitors know where you've been, but they don't know where you're going um other thing in terms of standing out from your competition that I think is really important and then I always try to do is when I developed my stationery line, I was sort of blissfully ignorant in a way I was not involved in the stationery community, and I didn't have a huge understanding of what exactly was out their competition wise on I was not looking at other stationary lines for inspiration when I did, when I created my line on guy actually stopped looking, I mean, I look at pinterest, but I look at things like architecture er and fashion and things that have nothing to do with theo industry that I work in in order to find inspiration on guy think that what happens with a lot of people is people start looking at it, especially in stationary, as people start looking at each other stuff. Andi, all the stuff starts sort of looking starting to look like derivatives of each other stuff, and even if you're not trying to be influenced by someone else's work, it just sort of gets into your subconscious. And, you know, I think that what what I've learned from having my stuff in stores and from talking with roofs and store owners is that everybody who's doing it. Like it's important to do something that's different it's important to do something toe off if you are starting out it's important to offer something that's not already being offered because everything that's already being offered is being offered in a million different ways in stationary especially because there are people that like don't do something that is already there um do some try to do something that is your own thing that is not influenced by something that is that exist on day you'll have luck with buyers and sales reps that way, but as far as like as far as people coming in and you being the only person on etsy who has a thing and then people copying it I hear you I actually had a buyer say to me at the stationery show this year your stuff looked so different last year than everybody's and now I just walked around and I thought you licensed your things to three artists there were three people who stuff looks so much like yours that I thought they were like I thought you had doesn't license your fines and I was like no andi that's not like I mean that's just that just it's people see a trend and they want to capitalize on it and that's what they do so you just have to stay out of it, which is hard and I get it and it kind of stinks but at the same time if you were the first to do that on s e you have that in your brain and you will be able to do it again yeah your ideas we talked about this a little bit earlier ideas will just keep coming like you're not going to run out of ideas you know? So you can always I think trust that something comes after that you know for sure if you're if you're willing to find it for sure emily what's so this part about owning your own business um that I get to make stuff that I love and I don't have clients and I don't have somebody I mean I don't have somebody saying no you have to sell this lexus in this way because that's what I was doing from lexus which is like so not me and that I get to I have an idea and put it out in the world and people respond to it and people relate to it and inspire people to do to go and put their idea that in the world and it's that part is just so often also you get to make really great friends you do get to make really great friends yeah that's young one of my favorite cars meet you thank you so much for joining us I am so glad that you're here it was wonderful and thank you for sending cards for everybody. They each got a card and, yeah, yeah, you're welcome. Thanks, emily can tio. Thank you, carrie.

Class Description

Most artists and crafters are easily inspired to create new work, but getting inspired to build a business that shares that work with the world can sound like a much more daunting prospect. Kari Chapin, author of The Handmade Marketplace and Grow Your Handmade Business, is ready to teach you everything you need to know to break into the online marketplace and share your work with the world.

Kari will help you determine the online sales venue that’s best suited to your handmade goods. You’ll learn about the pros and cons of both selling through an existing online marketplace (like Supermarket or Etsy®) and setting up your own independently-operated website. You’ll also develop the optimal marketing strategy for sharing your products with the world, from social media to blogging to branding and packaging. Kari will cover essential best practices for running a successful crafting business, including confidently setting price points, creating media kids, acting as your own publicist, and much more.

No matter what you make, this course will give you the confidence to see the things you have to offer as uniquely valuable to customers, the inspiration to take your work to new heights, and the foundation you need to ensure your business’s success.



Kari Chapin's course, Start a Handmade Business, was a game-changer for me. Her content was presented in such an accessible, engaging, easy-to-digest, and oftentimes hilarious way. At the same time, she did not sugar-coat things. Having a handmade business is a job and requires work. I love that she emphasized that fact. Not only did she give the nut and bolts of how to start a handmade business but spent a lot of time on the emotional component of being an artist trying to sell her work. Her guests (Skype and in-studio) were well-chosen and showed the rapport she has with her community. This showed that she lives what she teaches. The interaction with the studio audience and online community was integral to the course because it showed real-life examples of business owners at varying stages in their career. (I was so lucky to be one of the studio audience members. I will forever be grateful for this opportunity!) This class was a comprehensive look at handmade businesses that everyone from fledgling businesses to more established businesses can benefit from. I highly recommend this course! Thank you Kari for sharing your mind-blowing wisdom and warm and fuzzy heart with us! And thank you CreativeLive for having this awesome resource for the creative community! --Cathy Pascual,


Well, it's been a few days since the course and I am still pumped. Kari said a few things in particular that I needed to hear and I'm so grateful for that. I have been involved in the facebook group she put together and I am so happy about that. It's an awesome resource and my fellow creatives have been very helpful and encouraging. I totally recommend this course to any creative entrepreneur at any stage in their journey. Plus she is cute, funny and has just the right amount of snarkiness. I so enjoyed it!

a Creativelive Student

I loved this course with Kari Chapin! Her wealth of information delivered with such an honest and funny voice was refreshing and inspiring. I have accomplished things in the last few days that have languished on my to-do list for a year or more, largely due to this class. Kari is very down-to-earth and just plain adorable! I highly recommend this course for anyone creative who has or wants to have their own business.