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Confession and a Craft felt question

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  • SuzanneOrleansOntario
    replied
    Re: Confession and a Craft felt question

    Originally posted by SewLiz View Post
    I haven't touched my sewing machine in many months. I've been thinking about just selling all of my sewing/quilting stuff because of this. I'm attempting one last project to see if I can make it turn out half way decent. If not, then I think I'll call it quits. It's not that I don't like quilting, it's just that I'm not very good at it. The plan was to make stuff to sell at craft shows, or ebay/etsy, for extra money. But it takes me so long to make just one small project and most of the time it doesn't turn out good enough to sell. I recently tried to make the 10 minute table runner (Jean Truelove's youtube version) and was a mess (I used fabric that I didn't care for, so no real loss there). I've spent a ton of money on fabric through the years and I just don't feel like I can make anything worth even getting half of my money back now. I've already started putting fabric/notions that I know I won't use on ebay, but I can't help but wonder if I should just get rid of it all now and be done with it.

    So with all that said:

    I want to add felt (used Accuquilt's fowl die to cut the shapes out) to a wall hanging that I'm working on, but I don't know if I can machine stitch it down or do I have to hand sew it on (I hate hand sewing). Should I fuse it down first? One color of the felt is thicker than the other, but they came from the same package, so I don't know if that's going to affect anything.

    The top part is mostly venting, so no real need to respond to that, I'd just like to know about the felt (or should I even use it?). Thanks.
    Hi, you say that you are not very good at quilting, I cannot tell by your one photo, and we can be our own worst critic. How about taking some classes at LQS, or some guilds offer classes to improve skills. This might help you build skills where you might be lacking to make items faster. This is the key to being successful at selling your products. Handmade sells, but it and you must present a professional image - not a hoakie crafter.
    Years ago, I approached it as a business would. I researched my market and where / which craft shows generally had more people traffic. What you sell might not be needed by some people, but the more people who see your product, the more opportunity for a sale. Also, I packaged my products and had information tags for each product, and always with my contact information so they could reach me for more. This kept me busy, with repeat customers, calling in between craft shows. You need to learn to cut, sew, product style, even with different fabrics. This minimizes the time to reset up your cutting area. Chain piece with same colour threads, changing as necessary. I also registered as a small business, which meant I collected and paid tax, but this ,east I was also able to buy my fabric wholesale. Difference between paying $6/m to under $2/m. Sure I bought bolts of 13/m but I also produced. In my first 4 months, i sold just under $30k of product items, expenses at about $10K. I worked at this for a few years, but scaled back the
    level of production as this was hard on my body and family. I continued to produce, but at a lesser level. That was 17 years ago from my first craft show. Now I sew enough for one 1-day show, and with sales just under $1k. That is good enough for me.
    Once your product is ready for the show, have a table/booth that displays your product to maximum. Cover boxes and drape with solid colour fabric. You can add height and interest at your table. Hand out business cards. On the back, add list of available products.
    On your chickens, they are cute, if you haven't used fusible before cutting, just set in place with dabs of glue, and do a blanket stitch all around. Felt won't fray when washed.
    Keep at it, don't give up unless you really don't enjoy it. Remember, sewing / quilting or any other hobby/sport is meant to be fun and meaningful.
    Suzanne

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  • vbarb1014
    replied
    Re: Confession and a Craft felt question

    Oh I just love your chickens. Thats what I have in my kitchen. Good job its gonna be so cute.

    Leave a comment:


  • Rock
    replied
    Re: Confession and a Craft felt question

    Regarding using felt: I have been working with felt recently in making blade bags for drones. Felt can be stitched down easily with a machine. Use an applique stitch to ensure the edges are tacked down as the edges will pop a bit.

    Leave a comment:


  • jjkaiser
    replied
    Re: Confession and a Craft felt question

    That wall hanging is nice! I think it is coming along great. I have been quilting for 15 years and have never even tried to sell anything at a craft show..but I do enjoy going to them and see what others are making! Ask yourself some questions before you throw in the towel and get rid of all your sewing stuff.
    1. Did you enjoy making your wall hanging?
    2. Did you have to rip out a lot and do over?
    3. Was it hard to follow your pattern?
    4. Did your pattern feel too technically difficult for your level of sewing?
    5. Did you have trouble using your sewing machine?

    You know there are so many different items out there to make besides quilts if you think a quilt is too big of a project. Only you know if you enjoy sewing enough to stick with it. And whatever you decide I hope you are happy because this is a hobby that should be fun! It sounds like it is stressing you out too much. Idk if you just are overwhelmed or if you picked the wrong project to match your abilities.

    Leave a comment:


  • pewa88
    replied
    Re: Confession and a Craft felt question

    Another suggestion is to practice more before you try to make items to sell. You might consider making charity quilts, pillowcases, totes, anything to get better at the craft. Nice looking handmade items does not happen quickly, it takes time to master this craft of sewing.

    Leave a comment:


  • snippet
    replied
    Re: Confession and a Craft felt question

    I think I have that fabric! I got a sample of it at the birthday bash last year and thought it was so cute. I love your chickens too.

    Everyone gave you great advice. Marilyn (auntimerm) is a craft show pro and hit it on the head. Don't be discouraged by what sells and what doesn't. I have found at the craft shows it might take a few shows before something will sell well. So have patience. Small things sell much better than the expensive items. Dish towels, bibs, aprons, casserole carriers, bowl cozies, sleeping masks, tissue holders, phone charging holders all do well.

    Keep sewing and post your progress! We love to see what you've created.

    Leave a comment:


  • cv quilter
    replied
    Re: Confession and a Craft felt question

    SewLiz, your wall hanging is lovely. I really like the colors you have put together. The felt appliques will be adorable and I agree with the straight stitch. I have sewn felt and it sews beautifully. I think a using a light fusible product, like Steam a Seam 2 before sewing your appliques down will be perfect. You have more talent and creativity than you know. Have fun with what you do instead of worrying about selling your works. Make pillow covers, simple curtains, table toppers....JUST FOR YOU. Don't sell your things...enjoy sewing for you and I think you will change your mind about your creativity and talent.

    Leave a comment:


  • lots2do
    replied
    Re: Confession and a Craft felt question

    You've received very wise advice here. Please post a picture of your wall hanging when you are done. It's looking good!

    Some craft fairs I've attended here in FL have looked like really tough places to make any money. My Quilt Guild in New England has a table where members can sell their items and if they are priced reasonably, they sell well.

    Leave a comment:


  • Wyora
    replied
    Re: Confession and a Craft felt question

    I'm going to make a suggestions about your "rant." Take a step back and take the pressure off yourself. Instead of sewing something to try and sell, make a few things just for you. Try to find the joy and pleasure in the craft, instead of turning it into a stressful thing. Even if the item you make isn't perfect, learn from your mistakes. Hopefully in a few months you won't look at the sewing machine as a "job" and look at it with pleasure.

    Leave a comment:


  • SewLiz
    replied
    Re: Confession and a Craft felt question

    Thank you everyone for your words of encouragement. I think I will just do a straight stitch around the appliqué for a rustic look, as this wall hanging is just something for me to hang in my sewing room. As I said, I was just venting about stuff and need to really take time and decide what it is I want to do with all the stuff I have. For now I will just make things for me when the mood strikes and go from there. Thanks again. I will post a pic of the project when it’s finished.

    Leave a comment:


  • Hulamoon
    replied
    Re: Confession and a Craft felt question

    I will agree on the straight line, no fuss about turning around those corners.

    Give it a little more time. I'm going through a lot and don't feel like sewing either. Instead, I pick up a plant every time I go to the market, lol

    Leave a comment:


  • MaryUK
    replied
    Re: Confession and a Craft felt question

    Firstly with regard to the craft fairs, for the last few years I have been making things for a friend at church to sell at a craft fair to raise money for The Leprosy Mission. 2016 she sold very little but I still did the sewing and added to her "stash" - 2017 she sold out of everything I had given her. Sometimes you never can tell.

    Secondly, I have incorporated felt into things, I use a glue stick then straight stitch a few times around. As it doesn't fray, you don't need to zigzag etc unless you want to. That sort of style is popular over here, but I do understand not everyone likes the 'homespun' look, if you know what I mean.

    Don't give up with the crafting just yet.

    Leave a comment:


  • Rhonda K
    replied
    Re: Confession and a Craft felt question

    Your colors are great and the piecing looks perfect. I understand if you are no longer feeling it so perhaps a break is what you need. Give yourself a certain amount of time to see if you feel differently. Find a project/fabrics that you like and see if you are inspired later.

    Good luck with your decision!

    Leave a comment:


  • auntiemern
    replied
    Re: Confession and a Craft felt question

    As an avid quilter, and crafter I must tell you one thing. Don't underestimate your talent. I have done very well at craft shows, and bombed at others. The biggest thing I have learned over the years of doing both...you will make more $ selling small, inexpensive items, vs. higher priced things. I had a very good show this past Nov. selling a ton of small, $5 and under items. I am still getting orders for bowl cozies. Peruse Pinterest for ideas, and schlep away. You would be amazed at some of the simple, little things you can find on there. Good luck, with whatever you decide. I love doing it, so it is all comes easy to me....I learn as I go, making stuff. Perfection is also not necessary.

    Leave a comment:


  • mischiefkat
    replied
    Re: Confession and a Craft felt question

    Your little quilt wall hanging is cute. Not so sure I would sew the chickens down. Just as a suggestion google felt appliques on line and see what other sites say about fixing them to the fabric. The other posters have given you good advice about selling your crafts. Don't forget to post them, we are all curious as to the outcome. Kathy

    Leave a comment:

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